As a teacher I want my students to think big, be brave and to take risks. To question the world around them and to figure out where they fit in. I ask my students to look deeper and be willing to get out of their comfort zone on a daily basis. Learning new things is hard and uncomfortable, and that’s o.k. I tell my students all the time that if something isn’t hard, you aren’t learning anything new.
Everyday I give this message to my students, and yet I was hesitant, scared even to challenge my thinking, to get out of my own comfort zone, to do something that was going to be hard.
When I was given the opportunity to move to a new grade this year I was scared and nervous and full of doubt. Moving from my comfortable world of grade 2 with a curriculum I loved terrified me. I was a grade two teacher for many years. I Love the grade two curriculum and I loved the fact that I knew the curriculum like the back of my hand. I could make connections and create tasks that hit every part of the curriculum plus more. I liked the comfort and confidence that came from the ease of teaching the same grade for many years. Not only was I going to teach a new grade, but it was 5/6 split. Two new curriculums, plus the pressure of PAT’s at the end of the year. What was I thinking when I said yes!
Now I was being asked to take a risk, be uncomfortable, do something hard.
I was asked to move out of my comfort zone, to challenge my thinking, something I ask my students to do everyday and yet it terrified me.
Then I stepped back and thought as teachers we expect things from our students, but are we willing to do the same things in our practice? Everyday I ask my students to take risks but why was it so hard for me to do the same thing?
If I want my students to be brave, to do things that are difficult and challenge their own thinking, then I too need to be willing to do the same.
It is now 3 months into grade 5/6. I am happy I made the move but it has definitely been a HUGE learning curve. Grade 5/6 is a whole new world…
It is hard, uncomfortable, exhausting and scary some days. I have been challenged in my thinking and pushed out of my comfort zone everyday (even writing this article challenges me to try something new, difficult and uncomfortable). Taking risks is hard but it is what I want my students to see me as, someone willing to challenge their own thinking and practice and to learn it’s ok be uncomfortable, because that means I am learning something new too!