Admitting Mistakes

As a volunteer teacher, I have a liberty that many professional teachers do not: publicly admitting my mistakes without fear of losing my job. And admitting mistakes is important. It’s very true that the first step to fixing a problem is admitting there is one, and it’s near impossible to learn from our mistakes is we don’t admit they ever happened.

In that spirit, from time to time, I’ll be sharing a story of when something didn’t go right. I’ll start, though with a small one this time: in a previous post, I talked about an impromptu moment of learning that happened. I wrote that I had learned that one of my students was Jewish, and that I had the opportunity to connect a little more with her by wishing her a Happy Hanukkah before break.

The morning before break, I completely forgot.

On the scale of things too forget, it’s a small one. But it’s worth sweating the small things when building a relationship, even (really, especially) a teacher-student one. I know I remember many of the small moments I had with my best teachers much more than any of their lectures.

Look out for the next part in this series, where I share a time I taught for a semester and felt like no one learned anything – and how it turned the following semester into one of the best ever.

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