A Favorite Teaching Moment

Discussion in 'General Education' started by KinderCowgirl, Mar 17, 2012.

  1. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

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    Mar 17, 2012

    I'm sure we all have one. I was telling the story of mine today and thought I would share. This little girl graduated to middle school last year, I had her in Kinder, so quite a few years ago. I read chapter books to the kids and one of the main reasons is for the exposure to vocabulary. So I will often stop and say "wow, I just love that word, did you hear how the author used that-the lights flooded the night, can't you just picture that".

    Well, I was reading Charlotte's Web and the little girl's hand goes up and she says "Miss KC, I love that word-marvel. That was the perfect word for that author to use". It just struck me. I told her it was a wonderful observation and mentally thought "oh my gosh, they are listening, it is making a difference". Of course after the fuss I made over her observation, kids were raising their hands willy-nilly to tell me how they love the word "bread". ;) But I felt like I was really making a difference that day.

    Anyone else have any favorite moments to share.......
     
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  3. Myrisophilist

    Myrisophilist Habitué

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    Mar 17, 2012

    That's a great story. Sound to me like you're teaching your students to be metacognitive. Nice! :thumb:
     
  4. lovebeingteach

    lovebeingteach Companion

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    Mar 17, 2012

    I saw a former student this year at my child's karate school. He was DEFINITELY a difficult student when I had him in a resource room in middle school. He is now in high school. I sat down and he came and sat next to me. I said, "Hello", and he looked at me and said, "Things in my life really have changed, you know." I said, "Really, tell me about it." He said, "I am getting really good grades, and I just wanted to tell you that the reading help you gave me in your class really helped me in high school." He then went into all the ways that he uses the skills that I helped him learn. We talked the whole hour while my child was in karate. He was there with his little brother. When the brother came out of karate, I said, "Make sure you listen to your big brother because he is a very smart man." I got chills and realized that this little disrespectful boy I once taught is now a respectful young man, and I helped him get there. I think about this everyday.
     
  5. Jayneorama

    Jayneorama Rookie

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    Mar 17, 2012

    I loved the day that the word wizard in one of my fourth grade book clubs used the word, "Reluctant" for his vocabulary word. He asked for guesses from the group as to what it meant. Without batting an eye, another student came out with,"Oh, that's a synonym for reticent."
     
  6. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    Mar 18, 2012

    I received a new one just this spring. I got a nice little
    letter in the mail requesting I march with the graduating seniors
    at our county HS. One of my former students chose me to
    wear my college cap and gown and sit with them because I
    had inspired her in some ways. They have done this awhile and
    usually chose HS teachers. I am excited about it.
     
  7. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Mar 18, 2012

    stephen---that's awesome!

    Mine would have to be the day that one of my sixth graders (who could not read beyond a preprimer level) realized that he could take notes without words. It was definitely his break through to realizing just how intelligent he really was.
     
  8. chebrutta

    chebrutta Enthusiast

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    Mar 18, 2012

    Mine would be a Christmas card I received from a student several years ago. All it said was, "Thanks for giving me a second chance. No one else would."
     
  9. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Mar 18, 2012

    Mine is more "important" than "favorite."

    Brian was a bright, pretty quiet senior in my Pre-Calculus class. He got grades in the low 90s, but rarely had a whole lot to say.

    He graduated, and went on to one of the Service Academies.

    A few months after graduation, he was killed in an accident at school. Like everyone else, I attended the wake and the funeral.

    A week or so later, I got a thank you note from his parents. His mom raved about how my class was his favorite class, and how he would regale his family over the dinner table with stories of what happened that day in Pre-Calc.

    It was an important lesson for me. First, I need to make a stronger effort to really know those quiet kids, the ones who achieve without any extra effort on my part. And two, we never really know the influence we're having on our kids.
     
  10. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    Mar 18, 2012

    In the teacher list of needtoknow these should be top 5
     
  11. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Mar 18, 2012

    Definitely an important lesson.
     
  12. ciounoi

    ciounoi Cohort

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    Mar 18, 2012

    The day I (unexpectedly) left my LTS job teaching science at juvenile detention, a few kids were in tears. One girl didn't cry, but got the same stone-faced look I saw on her when her grandfather died. One of the boys who was a real pain for most of the teachers said to the assistant that I was the only person there who really cared about the kids... and there were a LOT of personnel. A few things clicked for me that day. First - I will never again underestimate the power of empathy in reaching kids - it seemed so simple, I didn't realize that it was so rare in these kids' lives. Second - those kids were human beings, including the child molesters, drug dealers, and car thieves. They had sucky lives, but they were good kids caught in a habit of doing bad things. I still tear up when I think about those kids who had failed their parents, families, societies, and themselves. Sometimes I can't believe that they are just so... real. Just kids.
     
  13. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    Mar 18, 2012

    It is so hard to pinpoint one, because each and every day I learn something new from my students. I truly believe I am a better person because of them.
    However, one lesson I learned just recently has stuck in my mind. I received an email from a young woman who was in my class in the late 90's. I clearly remember her-quiet, respectful, hard worker yet struggled a bit. She was one of those quiet ones, Alice, that you referred to in your post. In the email, she thanked me for making a difference in her life. She went on to say that the year she was in my class was an extremely difficult one (I had no idea!), and that she remembered me as being kind, fair, and willing to listen. I remember she moved away in 6th grade (she wrote and said she went to live with her father).
    I was so touched. I had no idea that she was going through so much-when she talked to me, it seemed as though it was the "normal" pre teen things.
    I learned that whatever I say does make a difference. I know that not every student will come back and tell me that, but for those that have, I treasure the memory in my heart, and I apply it every single day.
     
  14. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Mar 18, 2012

    My last day of student teaching, a lot of kids made a major fuss. They brought in treats and turned the whole day into a party. Even my dad stopped in from the high school where he taught to check out the kids at the middle school where I was. It was a moving day.

    My last class of the day was the one that had always been my toughest (and somehow, the one that was always observed). One of the boys, Kaanan, was small and slow, complaining that I was teaching commas when he didn't understand periods. He had transferred in from an inner-city school halfway through the year and had a tough time meshing with the other kids. He got into a fistfight with another boy, which I had to report, but I also reported that the other boy had been taunting him for the whole week and probably deserved the brunt of punishment.

    As I was packing up the last of my things, Kaanan handed me a piece of paper and wordlessly scooted out of the room. The note said, "You made me do this. :)" That note is at my eye level at my home office desk, to remind me that I can make a difference.
     
  15. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Mar 18, 2012

    Very sweet, cat!
     
  16. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    Mar 19, 2012

    I taught PS in my home for 5 or so years. One day, my DD2, who was in HS came home with a new boyfriend. He told me his name!! I asked him where he had gone to PS. He looked around the house, and said, "#$##$ it was here."
     
  17. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Mar 21, 2012

    I had another today.

    Shannon stopped by my desk on the way out of the room with a quick question, then "I love your notes! I'm so lucky to have you. Have a good day."
     
  18. jteachette

    jteachette Comrade

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    Mar 21, 2012

    Yesterday at the Zoo, the kids were looking at the signs with descriptions of the animals, and one little person who hardly ever says a word says: "Miss J, I think you might want to take a look at this."

    He wanted me to read the sign to him, but it was the most he had said to me all year!
     

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