Yet again, I wasn't selected as Michigan's teacher of the year. I think I actually had to be entered to even stand a chance at winning...but it would have been a wonderful recognition.Here's the link to the article on the 2013 Michigan Teacher of the Year:
I've taught for the last twenty years at various smaller school districts or single schools. Before that I was a student. I'm what people call a lifelong learner. Frankly, I love learning, reading and gathering information. Luckily I've seen some amazing teachers, worked with plenty and have received some interesting feedback. Throughout my years, I've found out some things about teaching and what makes a good teacher. I'd love to hear your thoughts on teachers, maybe even your favorite teacher from the years.
A good teacher isn't working for the money--which would be nice to live on, because a good teacher spends much of her salary on things for her classroom, students and families. I have a standing order at some of the local teacher stores. They have the best resources to engage my students and I'm always interested in new resources! Not to mention, I need money for the various small things...penny drives, field trips, and fundraisers.
A good teacher loves children and thinks that they are inherently good. I know that Johnny likes to throw chairs but I can see that angel under his skin. Teachers understand that a cranky or sick child will limit their ability to learn, as well as have mad skills to help children understand and cope with broken friendships, worry over lost animals, or how to stop itching a million bug bites.
A good teacher is open and available for parents throughout the evening and day. Email has made it possible for parents to reach out to the teacher with questions or concerns at any time. I find that it's important to cultivate those friendships. A good teacher works with the parents, not against them and vise versa! Parents need to work with the teachers. Teachers will fall in love with your child and spend upteen hours worrying about your child, planning for your child, and arranging play dates. Honestly, I spend most of my day worrying about how to make each child happy and into the best that they can be. Sometimes I wonder if I worry more about your children then my own.
This brings me to my last point for the night... a good teacher must give of themselves... their time, their heart and their passion for what they do. Teaching isn't a job- it's a calling.
Now I'm sorely depressed that I'm not teacher of the year. I work very hard and all, but what makes a teacher special to you? What do you value?
Musings from Michigan