16 January 2009

One Teacher at a Time

How sweet is this? (identifying information removed)

Hi SG, my name is --- and I teach Jr. High English in the --- School District. I attended your seminar last week and I have to say, about once a year I hear something that changes my educational life, and your presentation [on grading] was just that. Life-changing. Honestly, I came back to school and explained what I had gathered to some other educators (and my principal) and everyone was stoked and on-board. We might even take a professional development day as a department to do some work with it.

There are days where all of my paper-pushing doesn't feel like it makes a difference. The fact is, it probably doesn't. That can be very frustrating. I'm all too aware of the needs classroom teachers have and the demands they are placed under. It seems like someone in my position could do more.

I've had several e-mails this week along the same lines. Here was another from my inbox this morning:

I wanted to let you know that your presentations are quite the buzz at our school right now. They have been mentioned in 3 school meetings. 4 of the teachers at our school went to the standards and differentiation presentations and LOVED them. They are talking about maybe a content area or two trying out standards based grading next year. Are there any resources that you recommend as guidance as teachers transition to this type of grading?

Thank you for everything.

Perhaps I can help one teacher at a time. Perhaps that equals 30 kids at a time. Maybe it means that regardless of what else I do with my life, my legacy will be that grading practices change in classrooms. These little e-mails are good for some self-affirmation the next time the more mundane aspects of the job have me down. Onward.


Clix said...

*beam* To infinity and beyond, SG! I'm so glad to hear that you're getting this kind of response, because you should be!

And maybe reaching one teacher at a time is even more than reaching a classroom at a time. Judging by this, reaching one teacher at a time cascades into those teachers reaching other teachers at their schools!


Michaele Sommerville said...

Rock on! Cool beans! In other words, good for you!
(and good for the students)


Hugh O'Donnell said...

You do rock SG!

I've often said that getting positive reinforcement in education is like wetting your pants in a dark suit. You get a nice, warm feeling, but nobody notices.

Thanks for sharing your positive strokes. They actually function as a nice, warm feeling for the rest of us in the SBG vanguard. :-)

I need to give you a heads up on how our union is representing, via their newsletter, on this issue, i.e., "poisoning the well." (Not here or on my blog. I'll give you a jingle.) Reminds me of your union hassles! :D

Joe said...

Okay, so the more I read about your sessions, the more I want to attend. Since I live two states away I'm curious if you ever UStream your sessions.

The Science Goddess said...

I never have. But maybe if I get my "consluting" business off the ground, I'll be in your area some time and you can drop in.

Anonymous said...

Ooh, I want you to come to MY school.