It's World Teacher's Day on Friday, October 30.
To celebrate why not have a conversation with your school aged child in the lead up and discover who their favourite teacher is and why?
Perhaps encourage them to deliver a quick note to their principal to celebrate that teacher?
How fantastic would it be that on World Teacher's Day all the principals had the opportunity to celebrate their teachers from the perspective of the children they teach?
Every parent hopes that their child will have the benefit of 'the' teacher in their schooling life.
The teacher that affects them in such a way that it helps mould them towards a successful future.
That one your child might talk about years after, during their adult years, when they attribute a positive aspect of their life to Mr or Mrs Teacher from my year # class.
Robertson Public School has the benefit of a number of such teachers. The sort that has the students coming home talking about them in animated and excited voices, eager to share rather than the usual reluctance to talk about what they learnt today: 'Nothing'.
To have your child end their school day in such a way makes your heart sing. Particularly when they usually describe their school life as 'something just to be survived'.
One such teacher is Mrs Ponticello.
Her science lessons have had students across all years busting to share their learning after school. Parents have been prompted to desperately find a film cannister-like container to allow them to demonstrate their volcano learning.
It turns out those little lidded sauce containers from the Bowlo do the job nicely!
One student was so inspired they published a YouTube video of their learning. If you can prompt a child to spend time outside of school hours to share their learning with the world you know you're doing something right!
True engagement with your students is easily demonstrated in how they receive you in the general community, outside of school.
Where students aren't expected to treat them any differently than any other adult in the park. Often a student will turn away or pretend they didn't see a teacher in public.
When instead children gravitate towards their teacher looking to engage with them outside of school hours it symbolises success on so many levels.
If they approach a teacher at a restaurant and say 'Sorry to interrupt you Mrs Ponticello but I just wanted to tell you..' . A child eager to share their non-school experiences with their teacher is something to behold and aspire to.
Another such teacher is Mrs Norton.
What our kids have learnt from her does not just help them during their school years, but will help form them into the decent human beings we hope they will be.
To show compassion for each and every child, and particularly the more challenging ones, sets an example of how our children should lead their lives.
If your ordinary approach cannot reach someone - change your approach. If they can't learn the way you teach - change the way you teach.
If it takes your personal time - well aren't they worth it? For it is not what the teacher achieves, but what the child achieves because of the teacher, that matters.
Mrs Keat is another long term example of the impact a caring and patient teacher can have on our children's lives.
Not to mention Mrs Roodenrys, 'Mrs R', whose kindness towards the tiny kindergarten newcomers sets them up for their new life at primary school. And quite the dancer demonstrating the steps at the yearly disco!
All teachers should aspire to this.
To simply turn up and tick off the boxes that you've covered an area of learning is not good enough.
They need the passion to not just tick the boxes, but to make the effort that the box they have ticked occurs only when they've made the effort to engage every single student in a way that means ticking the box is not just a routine act, but a representation of their pride in giving each child something.
Of course, it's not easy, but it's not supposed to be.
The teachers that spend the time to identify, research and apply skills towards each child's specific set of characteristics are the teachers our children deserve.
The geniuses, the eager ones, the reluctant readers, the wigglers, the chatterboxes. Every single one of them.
To dismiss a child as 'difficult' isn't the child's failing - it is failing the child.
So if your child sings the praises of a teacher ask them to write it down. My favourite teacher is X because Y.
What better way to celebrate World Teacher's Day than to provide a costless gift more valuable than any other?
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