I'm linking up again with BigTime literacy to write about my teaching idol today! The best teacher I ever had was my second grade teacher Mrs. Lampley. She made me love reading and writing, and made me believe in myself more than anyone else. She took an extra interest in her students by getting to know each of us personally. She would go with me one-on-one to pick out new books from the school library. And, when I told her I wanted to be an author, she helped me make books by typing up my stories, letting me illustrate them, binding them together, and reading them to the class. It made me feel so special to have her "publish" my stories.
After I finished second grade, we kept in touch and she let me come back to her class and help her. When I was in 4th grade, she and I did a special letter-writing project together. Then, she saved all my letters and gave them back to me when I graduated from 8th grade. When I was in high school, I moved to a new state and Mrs. Lampley got in contact with me and we wrote back and forth in a journal. It was amazing to me that all those years later, she still cared about me and believed in me as a writer.
Mrs. Lampley inspired me to be that kind of teacher for my students. I try really hard to get to know them on a personal level, to invest in their lives beyond the classroom. And I build relationships that last beyond their year in my class. My classroom each morning is complete chaos because a bunch of 1st through 4th graders are coming back to visit - but I wouldn't have it any other way!
Since I joined the blogging challenge late, I'm also writing today about my favorite subject to teach. I really love teaching everything. I could never be the type of teacher to teach one subject all day long, because I love to teach it all and see how my students can make connections from one subject to the other. That said, math is probably my favorite subject and the easiest for me to teach.
"Every problem has a solution" - that is definitely what I love most about math. It makes so much sense. And since math is something I've always enjoyed, I love to make it enjoyable and understandable for my students, too. I love challenging them as we go through the year and diving deeper into our math talks.
Some of my favorite math resources...
These books are great for small groups/guided math and independent math stations.
Number Talks gives excellent support if you are trying to incorporate daily number talks into your math instruction. I highly recommend it! Hearing my kids explain their solutions to problems is super interesting, and gives me a lot of insight into their mathematical understanding. And, they learn a lot from each other during these talks! We do a lot of CGI during our number talks and in our guided math time. It's amazing to watch their growth in problem solving throughout kindergarten!