As a very stressed out teacher candidate, I feel like I tend to sometimes focus on the negative aspects of the student teaching experience. I know that I am not unique in this tendency as my entire cohort seems to agree. Whenever we launch into class discussions about students, schools, parents and community, we usually speak about issues in terms of the negativity that we see going on. For this reason, our field experience class has begun an encouragement forum in which we can share our positive experiences. I haven’t shared anything yet, but I want to share something positive here.
Yesterday I handed back journals with feedback to my students (the first papers I’ve responded to/graded!), and one particularly tough male student in my MTs fourth period asked “Ms. N, did you grade these?” She proceeded to point to me and this student smiled the biggest smile and said “Thanks Ms. P.” I was so touched, but I tried not to let on how touched I was. I did my little inverted frown that is really a smile thing. I was very proud of him. He had done a great job.
The second thing that happened in my MTs fourth block was a very quiet male student named R. offered me some kind of nut. He asked me if I wanted it, and I wasn’t sure what he was talking about, so I politely responded with “No thank you.” But he took it out two minutes later and presented it to me. He told me it was for good luck and he wanted me to have it. Apparently it is some sort of nut from a gum tree. It’s the first thing that a student has ever actually given to me and I think it’s appropriate that it is a large seed. I’m keeping it and treasuring it for the rest of my teaching career.