Hi guys! Today I want to talk about something that’s been coming up a lot in my trainings, and that is the amount of things that are stressing teachers out, outside of the classroom, that really don’t have any bearing on the experience of the student. Therefore, the students probably don’t care about it, because there’s a universal truth in education, and that’s the students aren’t aware of all of these things that are outside of your classroom, and they just want the best possible experience, when they’re sitting in their seats and trying to learn.
The first thing that students do not care about is the amount of work you have outside of the classroom, whether this is lesson planning, differentiating, setting up that lab, or putting together that amazing project or experience. Students don’t care or need to know how much work you put into that. They just want to know that you were prepared and have the best possible experience ever, in your classroom. I know this is hard because we put a lot of work into our instruction, but if you let that taint how positive you are or how you interact with your students, if it’s not going as well, that’s going to negatively impact your lesson, but more importantly, the learning in your classroom.
The other thing that students do not care about is how the last class acted, or what just happened in the hallway. For example, there have been times where I had to just break up a fight in the hallway, or a couple of students were doing something they weren’t supposed to, I had to deal with it very quickly, and this is a really emotionally charged situation, and you can get angry you can get emotionally involved in a situation, but when you go to that next class period, you can’t let it negatively affect you. You can’t be all flustered, you can’t let it just make the rest of your day awful, because your students do not care what just happened. They care what’s happening right now in your classroom. So it’s really important that you’re able to reset, refocus, and always deliver at the highest possible expectation that you have for yourself. So always deliver the best possible instruction, regardless of what else might be going on that day.
The last thing that students definitely do not care about is that new initiative or those seven new initiatives that you have to do for your classroom, school, or district. A lot of new initiatives get pushed out every year in districts across the country. Teachers have to spend time, training, implementing and planning for these initiatives. But students do not need to know, and they don’t really need to care about what those initiatives are.
So I want to make sure that you understand that when you are trying to implement a new initiative, by letting students know that you’re frustrated with it, by maybe not putting everything you can into that initiative, you’re actually hurting the students, because now you’re not instructing with fidelity, you’re not following an initiative with fidelity, so if it doesn’t work, you’re not going to know whether it was the initiative or a failure to properly implement the initiative because you were frustrated or overwhelmed or overstressed. I know it’s a lot of work, but your students simply do not care about all of these external things.
What does matter is this, everyday when you wake up, no matter what’s going on and throughout the day, if you focus on every student and every class, giving them what they need, when they need it, and providing the best possible experience while they are in their seats, you’re going to be fine. More importantly, you’re going to be teaching better. So please, I know you’re outside of work, how your last class acted, or things going on, or new initiatives can be stressful, but don’t let that negatively impact your instruction. Have an awesome day, and as always, stay awesome.