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What Makes You A Superhero?

I have introduced you to my youngest son and his literacy antics in earlier posts. After a long week, I came home to a present from my son on top of my laptop computer: a drawing of me as a superhero with a large M on my stomach.


This small gift came at a perfect time as it had been a long week and, like many of you, I had become negative about the state of literacy policy and instructional mandates that teachers were working within. I was working with excellent teachers in my University classes who were grappling with how to actually enact research recommendations into practice when their school was mandating the use of a scripted program. This simple gift reminded me that, even though it may be challenging work at times, we still do have a superpower within all of us to make a difference in the literacy instruction we provide for our students. 

As I require of my students, I sat down and made a list of what I can control and the positive choices I can make to better literacy instruction for students…aka ways to feel like a superhero. Here is a start to that list:

Start by thinking what is right with literacy instruction. We are putting more time and effort into literacy instruction than in the past. While we might disagree with what some of our focus must be on, let’s take advantage it and use it as impetus for our work. 

Articulate my beliefs about working with adult learners and teaching younger students. Remain true to those beliefs and teach with intention and conviction. 

Connect with other like-minded teachers. Build a personal learning network online and support each other as we work to make change in classrooms. 

Make ‘Balance’ my mantra. Continue to learn about and work with the things I ‘have to’ (NYS curriculum, teacher certification exams, etc.) and make them work with what I know is right for students and teachers. It can happen and our daily work is evidence of that.

Start at home and cultivate the love of reading and writing in myself and in my children. 

This is only a start to the positive work ahead, but my superhero portrait is a daily reminder to seek out the good in what I do and remain positive. We do, indeed, make a difference, even if those differences seem small and difficult to find at times. 

As we head into break week, take some time to recharge and reflect. What would your superhero portrait look like? What would you add to the list I started above? How can we reclaim the work we do as educators? Let’s connect!

Stephanie

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