At the end of the school year, we often reflect on how we did. Sometimes there is a little seed of doubt planted in our minds as to how we measured up as an educator.
You may doubt yourself and think, “I must not know how to teach very well because so-and-so isn’t learning. I must not have good classroom management because my class feels out of control. Is next year’s teacher going to judge me because this student is still not reading or behaving? Am I as good as my partner teacher? Are parents requesting me for next year?” These doubts can lead you down an unproductive path and the belief that you aren’t good enough.
Having these kinds of doubts is normal and completely natural, but they do not lead us to growth or help us see where we excel as an educator. They certainly don’t help us see where we need to make changes. Better questions to ponder are, “Did I give my best? Do I continually seek to learn more? Did I make my best effort to develop relationships? Did I provide the structure and consistency my students needed?”
It isn’t about being a perfect educator. It isn’t about the kids being on grade level or if you have a perfectly well-behaved class. It’s remembering that you don’t have control over how your students turn out. However, if you’ve done your part, then you have given your students the BEST opportunity for success.
So let go, stop doubting, make the changes you need to for next year, and ENJOY your summer! We all deserve a break and a chance to recharge.