Thursday, February 7, 2019

The Teaching Community

Recently the pastor of my church (Trinity Lutheran Church) gave a children’s sermon called “Linked Together in Community”. She asked all of the children to hold on to a rope and talked about how when one person pulls on the rope, everyone is affected. She talked about how our whole community is affected by one person’s actions. When she talked about this, I was thinking about how this also applied to the teaching community.

My teaching community consists of other teachers, students, and parents.

When my student fails, I always wonder what else I could have done to help my student succeed. I look towards my teaching community to help me look for ways to help this student. Many times, my colleagues will give me helpful suggestions. Usually, the parents are supportive because they want to see their child succeed and may help me look for strategies that work for this student. Even the student’s peers are willing to help if they can because everyone in my class benefits when one person succeeds.

Whenever a teacher does something outstanding, I feel so proud to be a teacher. When I watch the news and there is something negative about a teacher, I feel it reflects on all teachers. If a teacher does something against the law, it makes all of us teachers look bad even if we haven’t done anything wrong. It seems like the negative stories stand out more than the positive stories. A friend of mine says that negative news stories sell easier than positive ones.

I wish when we see these negative stories about our school community, that we can get past the blame and the pointing fingers. I think we need to change our mindset and ask, “What can I do to help move in a positive direction?” I had a principal once that said I was either part of the solution or part of the problem. I think all people have to be one or the other. You can’t be “nothing” because by doing nothing, you become part of the problem.

When we see a story where a teacher broke the law, it doesn’t hurt to send a supportive message to the school. Letting them know that you don’t brand all of them because of what one person did can go a long way. That whole school is hurting because they are a family. If someone in your family does something wrong, your whole family hurts.

If there is a story about a local school not meeting the standards as expected, think of ways you can support them in order to help them. Contact them to see how you can help. You may feel that you can only help a little bit but all the little bits of help by others can add up to a big help. Remember that anything you do can affect the whole community, no matter how big or small.

What are ways that you help your teaching community? Please share.

Photo by Stijn Swinnen on Unsplash

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