Heart Melt Moment

Earlier this week one of my student’s parents sent me an email excited that her child was finally in a class with a teacher that has a Scholastic account. We emailed back and forth about the importance of books and the importance of finding a book that students are interested in. She mentioned the possibility of her and her husband getting some books for the students and wanted to know how many students I have. I work in a school that is departmentalized so I have 3 ELA classes. That’s a total of 62 students. I cringed at the thought of sharing that info. I thought that a large number of students would damper their desire. She also asked if there was a book that I wanted. One of my favorite books is The One and Only Ivan. I purchased 6 copies of it for my classroom library and unfortunately, all 6 copies went “missing” by December of last year. I was hurt that my books were “disappearing”, but I just resolved to replace them whenever I could afford to. A day or so later I received another email. The parent informed me that she had purchased 10 copies of The One and Only Ivan for me and had also purchased a book for all 62 of my students! I was overwhelmed with gratitude. 

You may be wondering why am I so thrilled about this, but this is a huge deal to me. Getting children to fall in love with books is my goal, and this parent has stepped up in a major way. What I love most about this experience is that she gets it. She understands that we have to get books that are interesting in our students' hands, and then there may be some hope for getting students to enjoy reading! Today my heart is full, and I feel like my dreams for kids aren’t too far fetched. I also feel like my work is not in vain. In her first email, she mentioned how much her child loves my class, and how she and her husband just felt compelled to do something for my class. In a grossly underappreciated profession, their kind gesture means a lot. 

I can’t wait for that red and white box to be delivered to my classroom! What I love even more about this experience is the fact that the family wants to remain anonymous! I thought that was just beautiful, genuine, and completely selfless.

To all of my teacher friends out there keep doing what you do each day for your students, you never know how it is impacting them and their families. And who knows, maybe a parent will donate a book or 72!



Grow your PLN!!!

This tip has kept me going on the toughest of days in this profession. On days when I really couldn't express my frustrations to anyone, my PLN helped me  return to a more grounded place.

 Having a PLN is beneficial for so many reasons. For me, the support system is a major reason for having and growing a PLN, but the benefits extend far beyond support. PLNs are a great way to gain resources to use in your classroom. Resources come in the form of actual activities, ideas, and actual people who are more than willing to lend a helping hand in whatever way they can. I have learned so much from my PLN, I couldn't imagine my teacher life without them. 
My PLN helps me in working towards one of my teacher goals which is to be a world class educator! I want to be the absolute best! I want to bring perspectives to my students that require me to extend beyond the cultures represented in this country. My PLN helps with this. There are several teachers in my PLN who teach in different countries around the world. I love having them in my teacher tribe, because it gives me the opportunity to take a look into education in other countries. What are these countries doing differently? What can I learn from them? The amazing thing about a PLN is that it removes the limits from collaboration among the teachers in your building. If the only teachers you collaborate with are the ones at your school, you are missing out! 

If you're looking to expand your teacher tribe, I hope this tip will encourage you to take the plunge. In my opinion the quickest way to do this is through social media! Yes, social media! In my third year of teaching I took the plunge into online Professional Development (I'll blog about that later), and from there my PLN was established. I'd suggest creating a professional twitter account that will allow you to establish your PLN. Here are a few of the hashtags I follow: #bfc530 #tlap #kidsdesrveit #4thchat #engagechat and #satchat 

If you have questions about taking the plunge or want to know the logistics of setting up a twitter account feel free to email me at thelegitteacher@gmail.com
I'd love to help you get started. 
If you're already on twitter I'd love to add you to my tribe. Share your twitter handle and I'll be sure to follow. My handle is, you guessed it..... @thelegitteacher ! I hope this tip helps!