Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Compliment a Teacher - #EdChat

The other day, I had a chance to shadow one of our administrators for half a day. He asked me how things were going and I rattled off everything that was on my mind. (Oops!) The biggest thing was trying to balance being a teacher part time and the tech guy part time. Not wanting to let either suffer and still do a great job is the biggest issue I deal with daily. Ultimately, I'm going to have to decide if being a full-time tech person (in or out of the district) or a full time teacher (in district) is something that is weighing on me. He listened intently as I rambled on and asked me which one meant more to me. I said I love being a teacher and that is hard to think of spending time away from it. He smiled and said he had hoped I said that because I'm an awesome teacher that is great with the kids in class. :-) 

I feel like it had been a long time since someone had really complimented me like that as a teacher. I've received compliments on lessons I've created or blog post written, but I'm not sure of the last time someone who has seen me teach has complimented me as a teacher. It made my day. I'm not sure if it solved my dilemma, but it was awesome to know that someone thinks I'm awesome at my job.

Initially, this post was going to be geared toward admins encouraging them to go out of their way to compliment teachers, but why should it stop with them? I challenge all educators to get out and see other teachers and compliment them on the awesome job they do every day in class. It might be the first compliment from a co-worker they have received in ages. I'm sure the feedback will help many teachers make it through the week, month and even school year knowing they are appreciated.

I hope everyone finds a few minutes to compliment a teacher.

- @TheNerdyTeacher


  1. Wow, my twin!

    I'm a techie turned full time teacher...

  2. Hey Pal,

    First, you're right: Complimenting teachers is a really easy way to keep their professional juices flowing -- but it doesn't happen NEARLY enough.

    I always wonder why that is.

    Is it because we don't really know what's going on in other classrooms? Is it because we just don't have the time to really spend with one another?

    Or is it because we don't want to celebrate some because it feels like we're putting down others?

    Regardless of the reason, compliments are the only reward I really care about.

    And they're cheap.

    Second: Juggling two jobs is going to kill you simply because you're the kind of person who is going to want to give 100 percent to BOTH even though they are supposed to be half-time gigs.

    It won't work, man -- unless of course you can settle for doing a half-baked job on both.

    That being said, if you decide to step beyond the classroom, PLEASE do everything that you can to continue to teach as frequently as you can.

    You see, I believe that there is an expiration date on practitioners who leave the classroom.

    They forget about the demands of the job, which skews their vision of what's REALLY possible.

    The result is a bunch of impractical dreams that they try to foist on classroom teachers -- and then a bunch of grumbling about how lazy we are when we push back against their plans.

    I believe that it is possible for good people to leave the classroom and be a voice for reason AND change. In fact, I believe that's the only way that we will ever really see real change occur.

    But I also believe that there are far too many people working beyond the classroom who have forgotten what our work is really all about.

    Anyway -- looking forward to seeing you at Educon.

    Rock on,


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