The other night I was visiting with my neighbor, who also happens to be my co-teacher for this coming school year. We had been talking about getting motivated for the school year, and bouncing ideas back and forth.
The S remembered that she had a book that she wanted me to read.
Fish! A Remarkable Way to Boost Morale and Improve Results.
S had been given the book by a friend of hers and it was such a good read that she read it in about an hour, and wanted to share it with me.
This book is amazing.
It tells the story of a woman named Mary Jane who is put in charge of a department in one of Seattle's finical giants.
The book talks about how Mary Jane took the philosophies of the fish mongers at Pikes Peak Fish Market, and applied it to turn the toxic energy of her department around in order to save the department from its demise.
The main ideas behind making your workplace into a place you want to be, and that your co-workers and customers want to be are:
Choose you attitude.
Make their day.
I can see how I can apply these to my classroom and help my students want to learn.
Choosing my attitude... I can choose to have a great day, or a miserable day. I can choose my actions and reactions to my students. If I walk into my classroom every day with the attitude that I have the highest achieving students in the school, the best behaved students in the school, then I will have them.
Play... I teach 3rd grade, that first year of high-stakes testing. Yet, the students are still little kids (by the end of the year, they have grown a ton!) they still need to have fun. I still need to make learning fun. I need to have fun with my students, I need to show them that learning is fun.
Make Their Day...Do something special every day, to show them that they are special. It does not have to be anything that costs me money. A nice word, encouragement, hug, smile, will go a million miles.
Be present... by being there every day, both in body and in spirit. Make sure that my mind is in the classroom focused on my students and what we are doing.
If you have not read this book yet, I highly recommend it!