While I was not at this year’s Twitter Math Camp (nor have I yet to be at one) I have definitely been following all about it from many of my Twitter peeps since I’ve heard about it. I really need to go sometime but that is not what this post is about 🙂 One of the things that I noticed around the time the conference was ending was a bunch of posts with #TeacherLeader on them and lots of tweets about @jreulbach as the keynote speaker. I knew I wanted to see what this was all about so I was excited when Julie blogged about it and included a link to the video.
Honestly, this couldn’t have come at a better time for me. I’ve been teaching for 21 years, soon to be starting on number 22, and while I absolutely LOVE what I do and feel like I’m always striving to do my best and constantly learning, I have often felt that it’s never enough. On one hand that is good because it constantly keeps me wanting to learn more and grow, but on the other hand do my students or even my colleagues sense my lack of confidence that I feel like I could be doing better? Thoughts like “Am I kidding myself to think that I could have something worth sharing with others?” when I did countywide PD had always popped in my head despite compliments by several other teachers. Then finally this past year I did the scary for me, after feeling the prompting that it was time, and stepped out of my comfort zone in a big way – leading from behind the scenes is more my style – to interview for the ITL (basically our county’s code word for Department Chair) and I got it. I’ve been taking time this summer to wrap my head around this new position and what I wanted to do not only in my classroom but for our department. I’ve been wondering if it will make a difference and how my colleagues, many of whom I’ve taught with for over 10 years, will react to me in a different position asking them to do new things with me. Then Julie said it in her keynote: “YOU ARE NOT AN IMPOSTER, YOU ARE ENOUGH” and it finally sunk in!! I AM ENOUGH!!! I CAN DO THIS! As long as I do my best and not worry what people think then it WILL work!! I don’t like to draw attention to myself – hence the behind the scenes – BUT I DO have a lot to offer!! Thank you Julie for this wake-up call. Really every teacher needs to see this keynote – I think those on Twitter will relate to it the most though 🙂
As Julie says “There is no ONE way to be a Teacher Leader!! Share your passion.” My two passions are teaching mathematics and professional development with other teachers. Duh! Why did it take me so long to realize I could do both as an ITL? Oh yea – I never thought I was enough. NO LONGER!!!
So what can I do as a #TeacherLeader as Julie has charged us with? I will start with this…
I am a Teacher Leader because I love what I do and I constantly strive to learn more to grow to help my students. More importantly, I am enthusiastic to share this with others that I meet.
This year I would like to grow as a Teacher Leader by stepping out of my comfort zone and get into my department’s classrooms to look for the best in all of my colleagues and help them to know that they too ARE ENOUGH and are doing a great job by sharing it with others.
Seriously if you haven’t seen Julie’s keynote you need to do it. Right NOW!! While I was not there to get a sticker, I am going to print out this phrase to keep in my view this year. I am even more excited about this year! Perfect timing as I meet with my principal tomorrow to discuss this upcoming school year in my new role…I CAN DO THIS!!!
How will YOU be a #TeacherLeader this year?