Monday, October 27, 2014

To Fail Is To Succeed

I can't say that I have a favorite story about connected teaching and learning, but my personal and professional growth as a result of being a connected teacher is a story in it of itself.  I have learned to be more reflective (#reflectiveteacher), more positive (#BestYearEver), more in touch with parents (#GoodCallsHome) and so much more.  I have grown professionally by connecting with organizations like Teach Thought, Edutopia, the wonderful folks on the #ELLchat and not to mention all those blogs I read about others' reflections.

While I don't have a favorite story, I will say that the blog posts that have had the most impact on me have been by those educators who are willing to shed their masks and share their failures.  Those who have written about their mistakes and flaws in the classroom and other areas of the profession have, if you will, given me the permission to fail.  They have taught me that it is in failing that we succeed.  I'm really into motivational and inspirational quotes and I'm always sharing them with my students and my own kids.  Those quotes keep me going when I fail.  And even though I read quotes about failure all the time, I have to admit that I'm not one to talk about them with my colleagues, online or in person.  Now, I'm not one to pretend I have it all together.  I'm very genuine and am quick to apologize or admit my errors.  When I goof up in class and my students correct me, I graciously say thank you and move on.  I pride myself on dwelling on the positive, on being optimistic and hopeful.  However, I'm starting to think that perhaps I need to dwell on those failures just a bit longer so I can learn from them and make sure they are not repeated.  Perhaps that positivity is nothing but denial.

Unfortunately, I cannot specifically cite the authors that have so inspired me, but I need to say that I am thankful.  In the future, I will make sure to tweet, email or write a response on their blog.  And for those of you who don't write about your failures, please do so.   We all need to learn from our own mistakes as well as everyone else's.  I haven't yet to write a blog post about a failed lesson, but I will soon.

In success and in failure, this is still the #BestYearEver

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