Going Back to School - Part 3
But, teachers too, go back to school with goals to have a rich, critical thinking environment for their students. We know, too well that all the new ideas that we have learned over the summer look great in the books, and workshops and courses we have enjoyed. The reality is that it is hard work changing our own habits in teaching. We want to try these new routines, or teaching strategies, and darn it--we want them to work right away!
As with other times that we set goals to try new things, some things work for a while, then we get 'push-back'--both from ourselves and our students. When something is changed, it feels uncomfortable. And, all too soon, we might think, "This is not working." We might abandon or change our goals.
However, just as I wrote about the 'extinction burst' for children, we have our own extinction burst, where we just want to quit, abandon, or just give up because "it isn't working like it said in the book."
Of course not. However, this is a time for reflection and or perseverance. Just one more week, and I'll bet things will 'click'!
Also, teachers know that there is a range of abilities and behaviors in each classroom. So, part of the planning is based on providing some choice, and to have different entry points for children to access the lesson. This is difficult when the teacher is trying something new in his/her own repertoire to anticipate where some of the challenges will present themselves to different children. Be patient. Observe, and your instincts will kick in. You will know how to adjust the lesson, what to let go of at this time, and what to focus on. That is your skill as an educator, and the more you observe, and react with thought and flexibility, you will find your lessons and new strategies will meet with success! Perhaps, not exactly the way you envisioned, but that is part of the wonderful world of teaching!