17 Ways Teachers Change Lives
It doesn’t take a genius to see how incredibly valuable you are!
I hope you agree…because it’s true.
Well, it turns out that you can impact students and change lives in 17 different ways! And in this post, I’m going to show you these 17 ways.
But first, let’s look at the factors around that affect students.
Teachers Change Lives
You are more than a test score, more than a document, more than a number on a spreadsheet, more than an employee. YOU are a life-changer, lesson planner, student-reacher, teacher!
If your principal hasn’t told you lately…
If the last parent email didn’t tell you…
If that challenging student didn’t tell you…it’s still true. You are valuable.
You change lives – for years to come.
Four Influences on Students
There are four influences that affect students.
- Home factors such as family, stress, structure, material well-being, and background experiences.
- School factors such as the building, the schedule, the interruptions, and the people.
- Internal factors such as the student’s mindset, background knowledge, and skill sets.
- Instructional factors such as the curriculum, the teaching practices, and the teacher-student relationship.
The fourth influence, instruction, is you.
Of course it is. But instruction is not your only influence.
You impact more than just the instructional factors. You are specially positioned in students’ lives to make tremendous impact in all four areas! You spend hours, days, weeks, and months focusing on growing humans.
Yes, behind each student is an actual human – a human you influence tremendously.
You are the only person who is able to impact all four influences on a student! Here are 17 ways you do this.
17 Ways Teachers Change Lives
1. You impact the home when you listen to parents. You allow them to vent the frustrations of their parenting challenges.
2. You also listen to parents when you communicate their student’s challenges.
3. You influence the home when you praise students’ strengths.
4. You reach out, affirm, support, and build a team of support for the student.
5. Minimize the interruptions of the school…in every way you can.
6. Your classroom is a safe environment and with a culture of care and support.
7. Establish ways to celebrate each student, value their differences, and congratulate all the small successes.
8. Focus on life. School is not life. Learning is. When you keep that focus you make school an influential place for students!
9. Talk to students about their mindsets. Focus on growth. Mistakes are not the end. Where we are going is more important than where we are.
10. Every time you encourage students, you are shaping the way they think about themselves.
11. Listen to the nonverbal communication. What does their body language say? When you respond with that balance of care and high expectations, you adjust challenge their self-doubt.
12. Focus on motivated learning instead of motivated compliance. Over time, students will begin to see themselves as learners.
Read this post to find ways to increase student motivation to learn.
13. Students are humans. You change their lives when you maintain the human relationship…even when they don’t want to.
14. Focus on relationships. When students mess up. When they don’t care. When things are tough. Restore. You still find 1,000 reasons to smile and care.
15. Focus the curriculum. Too much is too much. Dig deep. Take time. Make it count. You know it may not be popular practice, but it is best practice!
Read this post on Slowing Down, and Finding Teacher Happiness
16. Choose the most effective strategies for teaching. You don’t choose your teaching strategies just because you like them. You find what the students need for learning. You tailor your instruction around them.
17. Stay energetic. Odds are, they didn’t wake up wanting to learn all those standards. You make it worthwhile with your energy!
So next time you’re having that bad day, just remember the impact you have on human lives!
You are valuable. Your value extends beyond the work you do each day. It reaches into the lives of countless humans. Your impact is among the greatest!
You are a teacher. You change lives.
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