Today was one of those days. I came home wondering what I had actually accomplished. I knew I had done a lot, but I didn’t feel like anything I did really helped in the goal of serving the students, teachers, and families of Riverside.
I think we all have days like that. We feel like we weren’t that successful. We start to doubt ourselves. At times we may even question if we are meant to be where we are.
Here’s the thing though – even on days like today, I love what I do. I love to see students accomplish amazing things in their classroom. I love to see teachers do the great things they do in their classrooms daily. I love the mission of helping kids be successful for anything that may come their way in the future!
I recently heard an interview of Kevin Systrom. If you don’t know who he is, he’s one of the co-founders of Instagram (I hope you all know what Instagram is!), that helps me on the days where I feel things didn’t go well.
I think we all realize that education can be really hard. And the end of the school year is one of those times that can be extra difficult. There’s so much we’re trying to accomplish during those final few days. We’re trying to soak up every last moment with this group of students because no class will ever be exactly the same. Add to that students who may be counting down the days for summer break who have mentally checked out of class. I’ve had several conversations recently with teachers and students about the difficulties of this time of year.
As an educator, many of us have heard (or maybe even said) that you have to love what you do to be able to be good at it. If that is something that has been ingrained in us, having a bad day can be really difficult to take. That’s why I love Systrom’s take on loving what you do. This work is hard, and some days don’t go that well. But he reminds us that great things happen through hard work. If the job were easy all the time, anyone can do it. But I think all of us in education know that this is not a job that anyone can do. It takes a special personality, a special heart, to be able to serve your students and community in this role.
The next time you have a bad day, and are questioning your ability, take a moment to reflect on the long-term accomplishments. Maybe it’s the growth you’ve seen from one of your students. Maybe it takes thinking about a big project that has come to fruition. Or maybe it’s as simple as that moment where you could tell that something you did or said to a kid had a positive impact. It’s easy to get sucked in by the bad, and we go on this negative spiral. Always be looking for the good. It’s there. And when you find it, hold on to it, because that’s the reason you love what you do!
So to close the post for today, I wanted to share just a few pictures of the awesome things that have happened at Riverside – just this quarter! These pictures were posted to Twitter by various teachers and staff members in our building.