Sunday, November 6, 2016

People Are the Changing Agents - If You Are Willing To Admit It.

You have to be ready and willing to admit imperfection if you are reading this book. Having read several of Todd Whitaker books, What Great Teachers Do Differently gives you 17 characteristics of a quality teacher.

Have you discovered the PLN of #WGEDD on Twitter? I chose to read this book in preparation for their conference in Weirton, WV being held in December.

Picture courtesy of
Peggy_Marco @ Pixabay
Your love in reading educational books shows your willingness to grow for the sake of your students. This book encourages us to come to the realization that in order to grow, it isn't what tools or programs we use, but in what characteristics of an effective educator we need to grow. We need to look in the mirror and be willing to see the effects we have on our students by what we say and do.

In reading the book, I imagined those famous characters we know who focused on revenge and consequence rather than prevention of misbehaviors and how it spiraled into things that became worse rather than better. There are some teachers thinking improvement is in compliance, however we need to "read" why students may be resistant.
Created on Google Slide
Top 5 Takeaways:

1.  It is the quality of the teacher that determines quality of learning or the quality of the school. Programs are only successful if implemented effectively by the teacher. Programs become the bandaid if there is no REFLECTION and refinement for how it is being implemented.

2.  Success in students does occur when we have high expectations for them. Better success comes if we have higher expectations on ourselves. Teachers are the VARIABLE for change and improvement.

3.  Effective teachers are able to see the situation in the eyes of the students and react as though all students are capable and GOOD.

4.  We will see more success and growth if we concentrate on PREVENTION of misbehaviors rather than on the consequences and revenge. If something isn't working, how can WE change.

5.  The effective teacher is continually maintaining and REPAIRING caring and respectful relationships.
Sketch note by @vrzemaitis using Paper by 53



Moving forward:

When there is chaos in my life: with a students, class, parents, and colleagues, I need to remember that I am the changing variable in the situation. I need to reflect on what I can do to improve the situation. Be truthful when you say, "I am sorry that happened." Am I demanding compliance or choice and voice? Am I "listening" to what others are rebelling against? Am I empathetic to the students and treating them as though they are good? Am I contributing to the negative climate or putting my super hero cape on using positive praise?

"Touch the heart then teach the child." 

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