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Home : 2002 : Feb : 22

    You be the inspiration!
    By Tired, too!

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    As an "old", sometimes tired teacher myself I can relate to the teacher that doesn't always seem bubbly and enthusiastic! You do have a bit less energy as you age--and it's definitely more challenging to teach today than it was 20 years ago. I still love teaching--and wouldn't do anything else--but I can't say I'm always teeming with enthusiasm.

    We have a new (though older)teacher to our school this year and she is always bursting with enthusiasm and ideas. She has really inspired our whole school. Since you are so excited about what you are doing perhaps your enthusiasm can rub off, too.

    I would continue to show excitement about teaching and make positive comments. Don't get sucked into the "negative talk." It can be a real downer. And you don't want it to affect your enthusiasm--children need all the "turned-on teachers" they can get!

    I have two suggestions:

    #1 You may want to limit your time with this teacher. Just because you teach side-by-side doesn't mean that this is the only teacher you can communicate with. Find a "soul mate" in the school--someone who loves teaching as much as you do--and make plans to connect. Perhaps you could eat lunch together once a week. Or make a date to go out once a month/quarter/whatever.

    Start a group. At my last school we had a TLC meeting once a month that met in varying teachers' homes. This Teacher Literacy Connection was a great time to share favorite books and teaching ideas. And since all the teachers who came wanted to be there, the talk was almost always positive.

    #2 Level with the other teacher. Tell her that you enjoy "connecting" with her throughout the day, but let her know that her negative comments are getting to you.

    Good luck!

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