It is late but I wanted to post today. I had started a post on research for kids and for me as I am beginning work on a manuscript but it is a reflective piece and one that needs more thought. So I am leaving that for tomorrow and the light of day.
Tonight I just have so say I am amazed at how children grow! Not only the children we teach but our own children even if they are adults. Today I had the opportunity to be the reserve teacher in my daughter’s classroom. I am called Momma Toft whenever I am there. Cute – I know.
This is a high poverty, high aggression elementary school. I am hesitant to say violent but that is there as well. Tempers flare quickly, language is rough and the day is exhausting.
I was a reserve teacher early last fall and had to call in several support people within the first hour. The day was one of those that you just hold on and hope we all walk out unharmed.
My daughter is in year two of her teaching and was working ever angle she could to settle the group. You could tell they cared for her but behavior was not something they understood.
Through out the year I have stopped in to help out, gone on field trips and shared with her ideas to help the group or individuals. She has worked with many other adults as well seeking answers for this group of students. There are so many issues but underneath it all you see thinking children who want to do well but don’t know what that means.
Today I was once again with this group alone. I had over prepared and was a bit worried about the level of aggression I might have to deal with. I could not have been more delighted. Yes-I had lots of structure, yes-we had worked to build in rewards but I was amazed!
They read, they discussed similes and found them in Owl Moon, our read aloud. They worked with fractions, moved through the hall quietly and respectfully (even when others around us were rude and loud), they admitted when they not working in the “Green Zone” and worked quickly to change their behavior. They were great students!
Reminders were needed and a few tempers flared but nothing that couldn’t be settled. No behavior support was needed and we shared a treat at the end of the day. What a delight!
It is amazing for me to see the change that has occurred for this group of students. They have grown in so many ways. Also amazing to see what my daughter as a second year teacher has done in supporting the development of these students.
I could not be more proud tonight of them and of her! This is why we teach!
Just to watch them grow!