Pick two of the errors described in Chapter 3, pages 9-13, of "Whole Brain Teaching for Challenging Kids" and write yourself a letter of advice about how you're going to avoid these mistakes in the coming year. Include one or two useful quotes from the chapter.
This school year has been great, and I know you are ready for a much needed break. Before you pack that final box and leave for summer break, I just wanted to remind you of two mistakes you have made this year. I really want you to think about these challenges and work to correct them in the upcoming school year.
First, challenging students can test even the most patient of teachers. You can't lose your temper in front of them. You are not known to yell at students, but sometimes you raise your voice. Please know that when we lose our temper, the challenging students become more challenging. Many students live with "high volume yellers," and if yelling worked, our challenging students would be our "Alpha" model students.
Second, you keep a fairly organized classroom, but let's face it, your desk and work station get messy by the end of the day. You started the year off great, but by December you were locking the door and leaving without cleaning up your high traffic areas. Now, what does that tell your students? I have to give credit where credit is due though. You always have your plans ready, and you always know what you are teaching. But, you need to put miscellaneous items away and keep them in the proper place. "At minimum, there should be a place for everything in your classroom, and everything should always be in the same place." If we expect all our students to be organized, especially our most challenging students, then we must be organized ALL of the time.
You have lots of great teaching attributes in your favor that help even the most challenging of students. You never confront a student in front of their peers, you have a passion for teaching United States History, you are always looking for new ideas to use in your classroom, and you are always willing to grow and try new things. You found WBT, didn't you? Who knows you better than me? Uhhhh, no one! So, when you read this letter again come September, remember that you are great. You are incontrol of your classroom. Don't lose your temper, and stay organized each day. Your teaching skills ROCK, Melinda!
Me, Myself, and I