It has been a little over a month since I started my student teaching, and I feel that I have learned a lot in such a short time. I have become more aware of my shortcomings, but have also worked on honing in my strengths. But what has been the greatest development has been creating a relationship with my students. Even when there are days where I am exhausted or I feel like the lessons didn’t go well, I can always think about the positive connections I have made with my students, and that makes it all feel worth it.
I assume other teachers must feel the same. When I’m out in the hallways and a student takes the time out of their day to say hi to me, that makes me feel very good about what I am doing. The fact they went out of their way to greet me shows that they look up to me, and that they see me as a role model, or just someone that they can trust. This was exemplified the other day, as there was a school-wide fundraiser run, and I got to see a lot of my students run by, as I cheered them on and gave them high fives.
Another example: One student, who showed signs that she was struggling at the beginning of the year, has recently started to turn herself around, and has become a lot more confident in her work and attitude. I believe it was because we were there for her and because we encouraged her to try her best that she was able to succeed and become a greater student. And now, she always says hi to me and wishes me a good day when the class is dismissed for lunch. It is students like her that make me realize that I am making a difference.
While there are going to be students who are challenging, as well as those that will test my patience, I shouldn’t let this get me down, as there are many other students who have shown that they are glad to have me as a teacher. But another thing I should remember is that not every student is going to like me, and that is okay. If I strive to be the cool teacher that everyone likes, I’m only going to wear myself out and become disappointed when some students don’t end up liking me. I must remember that I am there to be their teacher first and foremost.
And that is why we must remember those students who appreciate us, and take the time to talk to us or say hi when they are passing in the halls. It is these relationships we establish that make the experience of being a teacher feel most rewarding.
Have you had any particularly positive experiences with your students? Please let me know in the comments!
Have a great day!