Habit 7: Sharpen the saw

Saturday, June 23, 2018

Reflection: I was reflecting on this in my leadership disposition. I am one who needs feedback to better my practice. I need to know what I am doing well, but also where I can go from here/there. I love attending workshops and PD’s. I find new people to connect with and share ideas with. That’s why I love Twitter. It allows me to connect with other educators and gives me a push to try something new in my class. However, as much time as I spend improving upon my practice, I also have to take time for myself. I struggle with this. I know that in order to be at my best in the classroom, I have to take care of myself outside of the classroom. Eating right, exercising, the usual things. This can be hard simply due to time. But time will always be an excuse. In order to help me stay focused and recharged, I find weekly activities. This helps keep me on a schedule but allows me to be at my best. For example, on Thursday nights I play kickball. It may sound silly, but I look forward to kickball every week. It is at the end of the week so I have all week to look forward to it. I play it with my friends, so I get to see them and hang out. It truly helps me recharge so that I can be at my best in the classroom. I also love to cook and go grocery shopping. I don’t know what it is, but those two things relax me the most. Finding the time to do these helps me recharge my batteries while staying focused on my big picture goals.

Habit 6: Synergize

Reflection: When I first thought about this habit, I thought synergy and teamwork/collaboration are synonymous. I have found myself thinking more in terms of collaboration than teamwork lately. To collaborate, one must work together, the sharing of ideas is implied, and there has to be a sense of compromise. I am working on putting together a free professional development for teachers called Edcamp. This is my third year running this event and I feel as though each year it gets better and better. More and more teachers attend. More and more ideas are shared. More and more teachers connect. That is the end goal (habit 2 coming back around). But, I would not be able to have this event without my Edcamp team. We work together. This can be difficult for me because I like things to be done in a particular manner. Delegating does not come easily or naturally to me, but I have learned over these past few years. It is so much easier to have someone else do something to help than to do everything on my own. Edcamp is a wonderful event because of the team that I am a part of.

Habit 5: Seek first to understand, then to be understood

Reflection: At the beginning of the school year, I found a neat poster online that showed how to apologize. It had multiple steps, but were super simple, so I created a poster for it. The frames are: I am sorry for… It was wrong because … In the future I will… Is there anything I can do? I loved it. Super simple and perfect for 4th graders. In my head, this was going to play out so very well with my kiddos always using this template. Nope. Maybe a few times, but overall, not so much. The few times I did have students use it, it made a huge impact! I found myself using more “I felt … when you … “ with my students. They didn’t realize the effect their actions had on me. Now, I’ve been spending time with my cousin’s 3-year-old and I’ve been using these I feel statements to help him better understand how what he is doing is affecting me. He may be little, but he is starting to see the cause and effect of his actions.
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