Most of you know that I am a gym rat. I love to go to the fitness center and move with my friends. I’ve been to a lot of different gyms and have sampled many different instructors. And when it comes to being a student, I’m not that different from the kiddles in your classroom who are 60 years younger than me. I truly believe that every little child is doing the very best they can! Just like me, they want to please and they want to get it right. I’ll never be an Olympic athlete, but I can have fun learning and feel good about what I do.
So, here is what I’ve learned as a student:
Challenge - but don’t make it too hard that we can’t participate and give up
Fast pace – keep it moving because kids have short attention spans and I do, too
Music factor – music makes anything more fun
Novelty - keep us distracted with new things so we don’t chit chat
Encourage everybody – “great work class,” “awesome,” “you’re all doing a fantastic job,” “I know you’re trying”
Push – “just a little bit more,” “you’re almost there,” “you can do it”
Positive redirection (instead of criticizing) – “You might want to…” “Try it this way…” “I like to ….”
Model, model, model – model the skill or behavior and point out students who are doing the correct thing so others will know what to do – “look at….”
Social factor – My husband has enough will power that he can go to the gym and work out alone. Not me! I need INTENTIONAL TEACHING! And it’s so much more fun with friends. Just like children enjoy learning with their friends at school.
A student is a student is a student – no matter the age or content. And a teacher is a teacher is a teacher. A teacher plans and has a purpose, is encouraging, and has the magic touch for each child in the class!!
Special thanks to Lauren, Melissa, Susan, and Kelly - my teachers!!!