The first day of the next chapter in my journey to becoming a changed teacher was a definite revelation for me. My learning can be stated in two words: STOP TALKING. I'm referring to my own internal monologue during our first half-day of school together.
Instead of me droning on and laying out all the rules, I asked my students a series of questions. What I noticed even in this process is that I can't seem to shut up. I always felt the need to comment or parrot back what the student had already stated as another student recorded the answer. I knew that this change process would be difficult, but I am quickly realizing that I have challenged myself in a significant way.
As I listened to the students respond with possibilities about how our class could be organized, I hoped that they would give me some honest responses. I believe that the students were honest, though most certainly they are used to the "teacher-in-control" that is so common and that I had previously practiced for the past dozen year. Today's interaction was a tiny, but small step in creating an "nontraditional" classroom.
I'll return eagerly tomorrow for another day. I'm definitely aware that this year will be a challenge for me and the habits that I want to change. This should be an interesting year in our classroom.