Randy Pausch's Last Lecture
Dr. Randy Pausch was a remarkable husband, father, and teacher. The telling of his own experiences just proved how much perseverance he had in making sure he made a difference in the lives of his students, mentors, and colleagues. I loved his analogy of being either a Tigger or an Eeyore. Being active about an issue and not getting it exactly right, the first time, is better than not trying at all. After reflecting on my own life after watching this lecture, really brought up some times I didn't finish or go the extra mile to make the difference. As a future educator I will not be perfect and that's okay, as long as I improve from the short comings and give it my all.
Setting goals is one thing, but achieving those goals takes much more effort and commitment. My future in guiding students is a very important task that requires goals for me and goals for my students. Setting the bar high and expecting a lot may get results I can't even imagine, but when the results are below what I expect, I may need to examine the way I performed my job in explaining or instructing. The problem is not always the student. Many times teachers can stagnate learning by restricting classroom activities. Allowing and promoting students' creativity will cause the students to invest in their learning, a great deal more. When people in general feel that they are a vital part of something, their commitment level increases. As teachers we need to be the coach in the classroom. I can not do the work for students, but I can inspire and encourage them by guiding them through failures and successes.
I really like the "Head Fake". I use this a lot with my children at home. Sometimes when eating vegetables is a contest it is fun. My kids are getting nutrition and enjoying it at the same time. This tactic is not just for students. I spent twelve years in retail management and anytime work was perceived as fun, the results were far greater than when a task was simply assigned in its raw form. Rewards for exceptional work is always great, but rewards for a struggling student can make all the difference in their perception of success and failure.
As adults we tend to lose the creativity we had as children. The imagination is the key to becoming an effective teacher. Tapping a student's imagination can open up avenues of learning that are not achieved by any other means. Sometimes teachers expect respect from students but does not give it in return. Also being loyal to your students' education and needs will increase the student-teacher relationship. The big idea is to never give up, go the distance, finish the race, focus on others, and uphold any promises you make.