Thursday, January 12, 2012
Today was stressful. It was state testing at my school and I was ready to puke with the fear that my kids wouldn't show growth from the beginning of the year and for a teacher that's about as bad as it gets. These tests are our physical evidence that we are getting through to our kids. Everyday as a teacher you feel like you are teaching, but no one is hearing you or if they are they can't remember what you said two minutes earlier. Needless to say I was worried that my kids hadn't learned anything from me or at least not enough to show sufficient growth. I got to go into the room with them as they took their tests and make sure they took their time and then record their scores when they finished. One of my 4th grade boys finished first and this particular boy can't sit still in class or be quiet for a millisecond so I was super worried about him. His tests finished and I went to look at his score. He improved his score by15 points since he's been in my class which is insanely good! Most kids increase by about 5 at the most. I was so proud of him I got choked up and teary eyed and got to soak in the moment with him and express how proud I was of him. Every single one of my students improved! Another one of my 4th grade boys is really struggling in school, but improved by 22 points! I also had a struggling second grader who improved by 19 points! I was on cloud nine after the tests and really had to take a moment to collect myself because I was so overwhelmed with emotion for the success of my kids. Somehow, someway my teaching is getting through to them. Today I think I came the closest to getting a glimpse of what parenthood is like. I cannot even capture in print how rewarding it was to see these students of mine that really struggle in school have things finally click and feel smart after they realized how well they had done. It really has been one of the more special moments in my life to see my students realize they can succeed. Now I'm relieved to say the least and their success lit a fire in me that has given me a second wind for this last part of the school year. I'm looking forward to bringing Jesse to school tomorrow to see what I do all day and to a holiday weekend with Monday off. It's well deserved! I'm extremely thankful today.