June 19, 2015

It's not just about me

I posted this last year during the last days of school and it still speaks for me. I decided to re-post today. 

Here we are, our last weeks of school.  It's so hard to believe that we've spent nearly 40 weeks together as a class family.  

As my wonderful crew of students move on to Grade Four, I want to take this time to ask for one more, I don't know what you would call it...a favour?  I'm asking that parents and loved ones remind students that the things they learned this year, the habits and practices they developed can help them to be successful in the future.  You know my feelings around the importance of routines and procedures in a classroom; they optimize the learning environment for everyone.

In addition to this, good habits help us to be successful in life and my goal was to teach my students skills to last well beyond Grade Three, which is why I've called this post, "It's not just about me". 

Sometimes students think that when they move on to a new grade and teacher, the expectations change. Of course, in many ways, this is indeed true. But there are also times where it's not, sometimes there are expectations that carry over.  My hope is that the boys and girls will take some of the things I've taught them this year and continue to use them to help them to be successful in the future. 

Specifically, I want the boys and girls to always remember that: 

  • using a person's name before you speak to them shows tremendous respect, especially in the work world 
  • manners and courtesy will take you very far, especially when you are in one of those situations where you're feeling unqualified or uncertain
  • always keep your work space neat and well organized
  • use your good judgement when problem solving, you'll never get in trouble when others see that you've tried to exercise common sense 
  • you all have great handshakes...remember this. A lousy handshake is, well, lousy. 
  • read, read, read 
  • make sure your work is your best work before you hand it in (use a whisper-phone,proofread aloud and then ask a few friends to do the same)
  • always use your teacher's feedback to improve your work
  • always remember to get the hard stuff out to the way first and then go on to the fun stuff
  • ask for help when you need it, even if you think the instructions were just given, you can always ask a classmate
  • when you have to point out someone's mistake, starting it with, "I might be wrong but" usually softens the blow  (especially when it's your boss)and makes you look and sound very considerate.  
  • remember to include your purpose for writing in all subjects. It keeps your writing focused and polished and in high school or beyond, it will be essential.
  • encourage others to follow classroom expectations-don't tattle, just encourage 
  • be kinder to others than is expected 
My hope is that years from now, when my students are well on their way to achieving their lifelong dreams, I might, in some small way, be a part of their success.  


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