I have been getting more and more excited about this coming school year. I love the challenge of helping students of all different abilities and skill levels succeed. This year I have a particularly high number of students with learning disabilities and even a few with autism. I hope that I can be the teacher that makes a significant difference in their lives.
I am planning to begin the year by telling the story of the Tortoise and the Hare. I love this story as it relates to education and I think every parent should start out the school year telling this story to their kids.
You all know the story about how the slow and steady tortoise wins the race because he is never quits and just keeps on plodding steadily along. On the other hand, the hare loses because he coasts and takes it easy, thinking that he has the race in the bag.
In my class, I translate the story into more modern language. Some of my students are like the tortoise. I call them Ninja Turtles. They might need to take things a little bit slower, they have a harder time in school and need extra help finishing assignments, but if they keep working hard and continue trying, they will win!!
On the other hand, some of my students are like the Hare. I call them Energizer Bunnies. They are gifted students who find school easy, but they will lose if they don't continue to be challenged. They need to seek out additional projects and assignments to keep moving forward. They can't fall asleep (figuratively) in my class or they will lose the race in the long run.
Share this story with your student at the beginning of the school year. Encourage your Ninja Turtle. Some of the brightest minds and smartest people in our world didn't do well in school (Think Albert Einstein.) If turtles work hard and keep trying, they are going to go on to do amazing things.
Challenge your Energizer Bunny. Don't let her get comfortable doing the bare minimum. Help your bunny take on additional projects or learn about things that interest him apart from school. Don't let a bunny coast for very long or he will lose the momentum he needs to succeed in the long run.
Whether you have a turtle or a bunny (or both), have a great school year learning alongside your child.