Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Me as a Model

Not a fashion model, obviously, but a role model for my students. I've been thinking about this since Dan posted about keeping students' attention. It's a great post and my musings are way off topic, but it got me thinking. He has a short video in this post in which he calls his class "boys and girls." It struck me because I typically call my students "ladies and gentlemen" and they are a few years younger than Dan's students. I wasn't the only one intrigued by this. Dina posted a poll asking what others call their students. The responses are interesting.

Since reading all of this I've been more aware of how I address my students. I'm exceptionally polite with them (thank you, please, etc.), more so than I am in the rest of my life. I've also realized that I write thank you notes for anything my students give me, no matter how small. I am not that good about thank you notes to others who give me gifts.

I've realized that, consciously or unconsciously, I try to model the behavior I would like to see in my students. As a result, I am a better person as a teacher than I am in general. I'm not sure if I'm proud of that or not.

This also made me realize how much I'm teaching my students that has nothing to do with the SOLs or our county curriculum.


Anonymous said...

I was contemplating yesterday what I remembered about my elementary school teachers. Not a lot registered about my third grade teacher except that she sent me a thank you note at the end of the year. It was written on a note card with a pink rose and her monogram. She wrote a note on the front and back of the card and signed her FIRST NAME!. She even sent it through the U.S. Mail. I still have that card. It really made me feel special to get that from her. jj

Meg said...

I think you are doing more than just modeling here - you are also sending them the message that they are worthy of respect. Priceless.