It just takes one…

June 14, 2008 at 1:52 pm | Posted in Content Area Literacy | 10 Comments

Taking the example from Mr. McNamar over at The Daily Grind,  finish the sentence below as you reflect on your learning from this course.

It only takes one…



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  1. …good teacher to change a student’s life forever.
    …call to a student’s parents to develop a relationship.
    …voice to create change.

    I chose these three sayings because I feel that creating an environment of community (both in and out of the classroom) is essential to helping our students become good, active memebers of our society, which is ultimately our purpose as teachers.

  2. …person to be their for a student to show their not alone
    …informal conversation to develop a connection.
    …compliment to start building confidence.

    I chose these sentences because I think it is extremely important to show a student your willing to go beyond the classroom in order to help them. It’s the little things that truly do make a difference. All the teachers that I will always remember were great in these areas.

  3. …moment to make a child a reader for life.
    …smile to make a student feel like they’re not alone.
    …teacher to start a chain reaction to influence the lives of many students.

    I guess I was really influenced by the Friends of Rachel program which was started by friends of a girl named Rachel who was killed in the Columbine shootings. She would say that it only would take one person to start a chain reaction, and it is definitely true for teachers. One teacher can influence one student or one other teacher, who influences another. The chain reaction starts and a major difference is made.

    I know how much a subtle gesture can make a difference in a person’s life. Students really pick up on the smallest things that teachers do, and it really makes a difference, especially for students who need that little bit of caring.

    Any little action can really spark an interest or a change in a student. Because of that, I’m scared to hold this responsibility; I know that I can make a positive change, but on the other hand, I have to be so careful not to have a negative impact on a student’s life.

  4. …step at a time to make a change.

    We have all been exposed to so much during the last four weekend classes. We have all formed our own thoughts and opinions. We have all birthed dreams and desires for what we would like to see done and achieved in our classrooms, through literacy as well as integration of technology. We all desire to be the best educators we can be. However, we must all remember that change is a process. We must take our goals and break them into reasonable chunks. Trying to reach our final destination in one leap will only create stress.

    In the words of Bob Wiley from the movie What About Bob? , “Baby Steps…”

  5. caring teacher to instill confidence and hope in a child.
    callous or indifferent teacher to crush a child’s dreams.

    I chose this juxtaposition to showcase how teachers’ actions, for good or ill, can have a powerful effect on students. If we, as teachers, show confidence in our students and provide encouragement, we can foster the development of engaged and enthusiastic learners. On the other hand, a mean-spirited or disrespectful teacher can make children think that they are worthless or even stupid. Any child with this frame of mind will feel no incentive to be involved and he or she will most likely find school to be a painful experience.

  6. one experienced teacher to share their wisdom with an experienced teacher to make a difference…………………………

    I hope that there will continue to be teachers such as yourselves who take the time out of their busy schedules to teach future teachers of tomorrow. Thank you. It is wonderful to see that teaching can be a passion.

  7. …one sustained look into a student’s eyes to let them know you are listening, that they matter, that you care…

    During my 50 hours of observation in a Rochester city school last semester, I was continually surprised to see how a little attention from me caused a student I was talking to to stand a little taller, smile a little more, become more relaxed. Eye contact is such a powerful, yet subtle means of encouragement from an adult to a child, a teacher to a student–couple it with a smile, and you have made a friend.

  8. …test to make or break a students dream.
    …’how are you feeling today’ to brighten a students face.
    …attendance at an extra curriculur event to show the students you care for them!

    This course opened my eyes to a lot of new things. I have always wanted to incorporate technology into my class more, but didn’t know how to do it. This class let me learn a little bit about blogs and wiki’s and how to use them educationaly.

    Also, being a content (science) person, I never really understood how I could teach reading and vocab and writing in my class. But again this class has taught me some skills that I really hope to be able to implement well.

  9. …dialogue about honesty to change the class.
    …meaningfull investigation to engage a student’s interest.
    …conversation at the door to let students know you know them and care about them.

    Paulo Friere writes that our students will only respond to an authentic educational experience. An honest conversation about the role of education in their lives would help students see purpose and take ownership of their education. An engaging project that is relevant to their investigation of their world could change their view of school.

    In our education classrooms we learn the value of classroom community. What better way to foster classroom community than a conversation with a student about their life as they walk into our classroom?

  10. …colleague to make up your mind about a future student.
    …class to change a students behavior.
    …time to excuse yourself from a negative conversation about a student.

    Far too many times i have heard other teachers talk down about a student on my new class list for the year. After teaching these students for a while now, whenever the conversation about a new student in my class turns negative i just politely excuse myself and walk away. I start the new class off with a positive outlook and dont listen to the negatives.

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