Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Teaching Well: Steering Clear of Discouragement

Yesterday I arrived home discouraged. That happens to educators for a large number of reasons. Mostly I get discouraged when I have little voice and choice over the mandates I'm asked to carry out. When the mandates don't match my reading and research, I am left with a tough dilemma--do I follow the mandate because I'm told to do this or do I follow the research out there that points education in another direction? Teachers everywhere face dilemmas like this.

This is why I continue to be such a fan of distributive leadership, co-coaching, and collaborative teaching teams in schools.

But getting back to my title, Steering Clear of Discouragement.

There are clearly people and priorities that fill one with enthusiasm, excitement, and investment for teaching well. To steer clear of discouragement, it's important to steer in the direction of positivity, motivation, and inspiration.

Last night I thought a lot about that. I took a number of discouraging elements off my list and highlighted a number of inspirational efforts and colleagues.

For a long time I've advocated for many efforts. Some fortunately have come to fruition and others remain a struggle. For now though I'm headed in the direction of positivity and encouragement rather than discouragement for a while.

I don't want to come home after a long day of school discouraged if I can help it. Onward.