Saturday, April 8, 2017
My kids take an end-of-year state reading test in April. I was recently reminded how easy it would be for a teacher to think her job is finished once students take that test -- to finally breathe deeply and fill up the remaining weeks of school with fluff. This kind of thinking is erroneous. Teaching with a sense of urgency means I will give them my best teaching up until the very last day.
All the countless hours of effort, time, and energy I've dedicated to this year do not culminate in the ten minutes a student spends attempting to prove himself proficient for the state. What a waste of time if that were true. The past seven months of my life do not hinge on a test, and the same can be said for my students. So why would I use a test as an indicator that my job is done?
Secondly, the end of an official testing period is not the end of my influence. Minus the last few days of school when I wrap things up, I plan to use every last minute to joyfully teach every student. I'm not finished messing with their hearts and minds until they walk out my door on the last day of school, Then, and only then, will I breathe deeply.