It was a long and tiring week. I had my first classroom observation by my supervisor and being a new teacher, I felt pressured to prove myself to him, even though I knew I didn't have anything to worry about. After all, he's seen me teach before. Still, now that he's actually my boss, I had to step up and go the extra mile.
I was being evaluated on my ability to encourage students into higher-order thinking, where every child is constantly engaged and thinking outside the box. I had to teach but at the same time facilitate intelligent conversation between the students. I had to provide some pretty in-depth teaching moments.
It was a challenge, but during those 45 minutes, the class pulled it off. I was so proud of my kids. They showcased their creativity and wit. They spent a great amount of time synthesizing their learnings and going beyond what was taught within the curriculum, and taking it to real life situations and history. A few of them even engaged in a healthy debate. In other words, the lesson was entirely student-centered, which was not only a great thing to share with the principal, but also a memorable teaching moment for me!
I live for those 'teaching moments' at work. I find fulfillment, not in being able to teach kids something new, but in seeing kids teach each other, while I'm just there to mediate or facilitate. I treasure those moments when kids learn to ask meaningful questions and aren't afraid to embrace their curiosities. I love seeing kids experiment and find out things for themselves, with just their hands and their brains to rely on. I love witnessing the magic of light bulb moments when they suddenly figure something out. Oh, the joy in their eyes whenever that happens! It makes everything so worth it,
It's amazing when a big decision instantly turns things around, leaving my old place of employment and moving to this brand new one, with a brand new supervisor and in a brand new environment. Last year, I simply wanted to find the joy that I once lost in teaching again. I can honestly say that now, that joy is back.