Student Impact?

Dewey
HeatherLyke
Posts: 34
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2016 7:01 pm

Student Impact?

Postby HeatherLyke » Sun Jan 24, 2016 7:37 pm

As a teacher I impact kids every day, and to a degree I get to see that impact. As a coach, I still get to directly impact kids. As a principal, how will my impact on students shift?

This past Friday I was coaching one of my Speech Team members. As we concluded our coaching session, she hung back--waiting for me to collect my belongings so she could walk out of the building with me. While she hovered as I bundled up to brave the cold, she shared with me that she has started hormone therapy. (This was not a surprise to me: last year I had asked her what pronoun she preferred and a smile lighted her face. "Her," she requested, and then thanked me for asking.) So, with this new information at hand, I inquired as to how it was going and she shared a bit about her hormone irregularity and then dove in to her struggles at home. She continued to go in to detail as we reached the front door of the school, so we sat on the benches beside the front windows as I let her continue to vent her frustrations. And then, after about 15 minutes, we started to say our goodbyes.

"Hey, Mrs. Lyke--" she said as as she turned back toward me. "You just need to know that I really appreciate you being willing to listen."

My heart melted. These moments are why I went into teaching.

Although this student didn't go into detail about how I have impacted her life, I know that I have. I can see it in how she no longer shakes as she walks in front of a room to give her speech. I can see it in how she analyzes her poems before she presents them to an audience, rather than simply reading the words on the page. I can see it in her smile every time she comes to a coaching session, team meeting, or tournament. And then, on Friday, I saw it in her willingness to share her reality in a candid way, despite the very personal topic.

Off and on this weekend my mind has ventured back to this moment, causing me to wonder if my impact on students will be less if/when I become a principal. Certainly, my awareness of the impact I make on students will be lessened, as I realize my impact would be less direct. Conceptually, I understand that I would have a chance to impact teachers and other building staff, and in turn they would impact students. But will that be enough? It certainly won't feel the same.
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Dave Pugh
Site Admin
Posts: 31
Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2016 1:41 pm

Re: Student Impact?

Postby Dave Pugh » Mon Jan 25, 2016 2:37 pm

Dewey would be proud of you!
Do you think as principals we could still have a group of students who we worked to build a closer relationship with? My favorite all-time principal taught one class each semester. He said he just couldn't do his job without that connection. What would "the man" say if I were a principal and said, "No I can't attend the meeting at Edison because I'm teaching that hour." :)
HeatherLyke
Posts: 34
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2016 7:01 pm

Re: Student Impact?

Postby HeatherLyke » Fri Feb 05, 2016 2:16 pm

I would love it as a building principal if I still had one class a day to work with. What would the students think--being in a class taught by 'the man' (as they see it)? Even without a class, I know there are many building principals who have a student advisory group -- so at least in that small way they have student connections. Also, in many buildings I see administrators actively making an effort to be in the hallway during passing time -- if used right, just those small increments of time can make a big impact (on the students and the administrator).

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