Today I spent 8 hours in training for a new teacher evaluation program. I’m actually quite excited for this program–it forces me to be reflective, it challenges me to step out of my comfort zone, it encourages me to think deeply about my teaching.
In short, it asks, “What kind of teacher do you want to be?”
I think about this occasionally, but it’s really been on my mind since Sunday, when I learned that my high school choir teacher lost her battle with cancer. She was the kind of teacher that really expected great things of us but still encouraged us to have fun.
Choir was my “school family” in high school. I remember when she was diagnosed with breast cancer, she told us, “I don’t have any kids. YOU are my kids.” I don’t remember anything she said after that, (it was mostly explaining what she expected of us while she was out for treatment) because a teacher had never before cared enough to bring me into her life that much. To admit, essentially, that we were important to her was so foreign to me.
Right now, the night before meetings start, I am feeling angst about this year and the only thing that is calming me down is the answer to this question: What kind of teacher do I want to be?
I want to be like Miss Mac.
I’ll start there, and I’ll let the rest fall into place as much as it can.