The week before Thanksgiving is quite the opposite as a teacher vs. a student. I, for once, do not enjoy this week because I am rushing to get everything done and can't just push it back to Monday. The students have also been crazy with behaviors. They are excited for a week off, and to top it all off, they know my time with them is limited. They have all of a sudden taken an interest in everything about me. I am just not being bombarded with questions from my older students, and having them attempt to distract me in every which way. As much as I want to spend that personal time with each student, it is difficult because I have helped them learn so much that I want to keep that going. I am definitely starting to become sad that if I want to see their learning, I have to visit, and not just come in for another day at school. I had one student become sad and full of tears when I said I had two weeks after break left. As much as it hurt me to see the tears, I also felt happiness for seeing that I made such an impact on the student that he was sad to see me go.
The good news is (and they have yet to realize this) I will still be around and I will still be able to see them grow! My group of students and faculty members have become my family these past few weeks. They have been there for me through a family death, happy times, sad times, sleepy times, and many more. I never imagined my semester ending with a bond for people I grew so fond of. The students not only learned from me, but I learned from them. I learned to listen to what they have to say, even if it might be irrelevant because that may spark an idea to motivate a student to master a skill. I actually did this listening technique this week. I listened to my student week after week talk about this game, Minecraft. Well, I took this into effect this week by implementing a coloring exercise and math facts on a numbers chart. The numbers chart will eventually form into a character from the game. I also am using his passion for the game to teach him repeated addition/multiplication skills. When I said the word mine craft, I had him jump into a seat so fast, I wasn't sure how to react. It was so exciting to see that taking the time to listen ended up being successful for both of us. The student was engaged and I was teaching the student a skill that he is slowly beginning to master. It was a great week in the classroom, and I'm becoming more sad as I realize my time is slowly coming to an end with these amazing students.