Student or Teacher???

Student or Teacher

As the regular school year has come to a close I find myself sitting here reflecting on the school year and my career as an agricultural educator.  Throughout my 11 years as an educator, there have been many of lessons learned.  Some have been more easily learned than others and some have hit me like a eighteen wheeler running down the interstate.

Though not a new lesson to many of us, but probably one of the most important lessons, is the importance of building relationships.

I am blessed to have the opportunity to not only build positive relationships with myWade 1 students in the classroom but also through the FFA organization. I find many of my week nights, if not working with FFA career development events, following my students and their athletic teams.  Through my attendance at these activities I don’t only develop positive student relationships but develop relationships with their families also.What some overlook is that those relationships can often make or break many of our students and us as educators too.

Over the years I have had the opportunity to work with some of the greatest kids in the world.  Though there is a couple of experiences that stick out the most. One of those this spring a group of student and I traveled the state every weekend from mid February through the end of March traveling from one FFA contest to another.  Over 1,000 miles spent in a van, you get to know each other pretty well. They definitely expanded my knowledge of popular teen music, as the first stop we ever made was to buy an aux cord. During one of our practices one student’s statement really made me realize the importance of positive relationship building.  This student told me I was the closest thing to a dad she had ever had. She appreciated that I cared about every aspect of her life, just not the academics.  The role we take as teachers is continually evolving.  To some students we do become that parental role for others it may be a different. Continue reading “Student or Teacher???”

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How can I ask if I didn’t know?

How can I ask if I didn’t know?

how-can-i-ask

Recently, hubby and I had a heated “discussion” about my belief that I had to physically drive to the bank to pay the truck payment. My belief goes back almost 20 years.

In 1998 my mother co-signed a loan to purchase a new car for me. When we left the bank, the loan agent told me, “Each month just bring in your payment and the loan book. We will tear out a receipt for each payment.” After that I just always took my payment book to the bank.

As our “discussion” wound down, my husband said, “If you don’t know something, just ask.”

How was I supposed to ask, if I didn’t know that I didn’t know it???? Continue reading “How can I ask if I didn’t know?”

What do you want to learn?- a first day question for students

What do you want to learn?– first day question for students

What do you want to learn

On August 23rd I began my teaching journey at State Tech. My lesson plans were written, my Introduction PowerPoints ready to go, syllabi were photocopied, and my broom was ready to fly. (More about the flying broom will be discussed in later posts.) What I was not prepared for was the openness my students would show towards learning.

To kick things off in my COM 101 course, I created a grammar pre-test. It was important to know what grammar skills my students possessed. It consisted of 15 multiple choice questions and was not for a grade.

Within a minute or two of starting the test, I could see frustration forming on the faces of my students. After four or five minutes, their grumblings were audible. By the time they finished their pre-test, I could almost smell a mutiny. In my most professional and reassuring manner, I tried to persuade them it would ok.

We finished up the pre-test and headed back to our regular classroom. I observed head shaking and defeated student reactions as I followed them. I had just learned that grammar was not my students’ strong suit.

Fortunately, I had anticipated this and had a question ready for them. Continue reading “What do you want to learn?- a first day question for students”