Oh, it is so contagious. You have no chance of making it out unscathed.
Germs? Maybe. This post could totally be about the fact that strep has already ripped through our school in the first week of our attendance, or how lots of folks (myself included) have been horizontal and couch-bound for one or more days over the Labor Day weekend, but it’s not. This post is about a different kind of contagion.
It’s your teaching. Your teaching is contagious. Like, super contagious. You’d better watch out.
- If you teach your readers how to give an excellent sneak peek of a new book, then you’d better believe that they’ll straight-up call you on it if you don’t do the same during your next read aloud time.
- If you teach your readers how to use punctuation to help with their phrasing, then don’t be surprised when they start to notice punctuation all over the place. You’ll be hearing about periods, commas, hyphens, and question marks all day long. Math lesson about money? Check out those periods! Writing time? They’ll be discussing with their tablemates how to show a pause in the middle of a sentence. Recess? They’ll actually say the words, “Exclamation point!” to make their mid-play statements absolutely clear to each other.
- If you teach each of your students that you are so incredibly happy to see his or her face coming through the classroom door every morning, then each student will authentically identify with and own that knowledge and will consequently carry it through his or her day. There’s a good chance that you’ll get some sweet and shy love smiles shining your way. At the very least, your students who catch this sense of connection will be more open and able to come to you with questions or concerns about their lives.
Those are just three little examples from my first few days at school this year. I know there are millions of other examples out there as well. What are your favorite moments of teacher contagion?
This teaching thing is a sticky, sticky business. What you put out there is highly contagious. Proceed at your own risk.