Viewing Teaching As Magical by Gini Cunningham
Teaching is a magically powerful career. In what other profession can you wake up every day with a definite plan to help students succeed? Where else can you go to bed each night with the sense of well-being for a job well done (and a smidgen of stress for the tasks ahead tomorrow)? Keep the following productivity tips in mind:
- Always plan for excellence – in yourself and of your students. You are the magic that can ignite the excitement of learning in young minds. Teachers make a difference.
- Believe in yourself as a teacher; believe in your students as proficient learners.
- Set goals for teaching excellence; set goals for attainable and challenging learning.
- Honor achievement with direct feedback and encouragement that rallies students to even greater heights.
- Accept and promote responsibility. You are the greatest factor in the successful learning of your students. Guide your students to share responsibility for – and a love of – learning so that they can move to independence, needing you as a facilitator but not depending on you for the answer to every problem.
- Love teaching every day. It is a wonderful adventure that opens your eyes to children as they travel the knowledge pathway to adulthood.
- Design lessons that make learning a wonderful adventure for your students so that they can open their eyes to the boundless possibilities of the world.
- Take care of your PIESS: physical, intellectual, emotional, social, and spiritual health so that you can operate at 100% each day.
- Enjoy the magic of Ah! Ha! Moments, individual success, and the thrill of interacting with and developing young lives. Your impact as a teacher, as a dedicated professional who truly cares, lasts forever.
- Create a vision of teaching:
- What must your students know and be able to do to succeed?
- What must you do to get them there?
- How will you challenge the brightest?
- How will you re-teach and fill in the blanks for students who struggle?
- What will the last day of the school year look like? Feel like? Be like?
- What will be the greatest accomplishments?
© Gini Cunningham (adapted from her book, The New Teacher’s Companion: Practical Wisdom for Succeeding in the Classroom (ASCD). In addition to her writing, Gini is an author, workshop leader, and consultant who provides education for educators.