My student teacher, Isaac, started on Wednesday.
To say he is a God-send, would be an understatement.
He has only been with me 3 days and already I have learned as much from him than he has learned from me.
His observations are those of an outsider.
I don't have those "fresh" eyes anymore... I have been in the depths long enough that (even thought I love my job), I am oblivious to many of the goings on.
Example: He told me (after 2 days of eating lunch in the teacher's lounge) exactly which teachers are "done". (He also followed it up with that he is happy he was placed with a teacher who is not.)
You see... I hear the complaints, the mumbles and groans of my colleagues... but that it is normal conversation.... one that I don't even acknowledge as being anything but normal anymore. And it's hard not to fall into that trap myself.
Having a fresh outside observer though, has reminded me that I haven't always taught around people that are like this. Most love what they are doing and that is why they are doing it.
I have also learned with Isaac being in my classroom that I have been starved for adult interaction this year. In the past, I would walk next door to my bestie's (Laura) room and discuss my night or my morning. We shared everything. With her moving to 2nd grade this year, I have made attempts to go see her, but it isn't convenient to travel down to another part of the building every morning when things need to be done. I have felt outside of the group of the other third grade teachers. So, I have kept to myself. The thing is... with Isaac in the room, I have talked non-stop. I'm sure he probably wonders if I talk even in my sleep. I guess you could say, I'm filling him up. I filling him up with stories of struggles and things that make me laugh. I want him to know that all of this isn't easy, but it is worth it.
He also helped me see that it's okay when things don't always go as planned.
Don't get me wrong... I knew this already.
I am a teacher and I adjust accordingly multiple times a day.
But on Friday, I went to use our CPS clickers (Think remotes that kids can use to answer test questions) and halfway through the test half the batteries died.
I walked past Isaac and said, "Well... That was an epic fail."
(Looking back, I'm embarrassed with my negativity... things like this happen on a daily basis. You adjust and move on.)
He responded, "Yeah... but we learned from it. We learned that we need new batteries before we use these again. And isn't that what it's all about?... learning?"
I smiled, "Yes. Yes, it is. Thank you for the reminder."
Yeah... I think the next 16 weeks are going to be an unbelievable journey!!