I’ve lost my teaching mojo…

It’s 7am on a bloody cold Autumn morning and I’m sitting on my lounge, stressing. School resumes next week. On Monday I have to run PBL workshops all day at a very prestigious selective public school. On Tuesday a guest speaker is coming to talk to my gaming class about game design and on Wednesday I am giving a presentation on VoicEd at a big conference in the city. Whilst I’m used to this kind of pressure/craziness, I’m usually excited by it. Right now, I’m not. I’m just stressed.

Last term was probably my worst term as a teacher. Or, at least, the worst that I can remember – I’m sure there was worse in year 1 or 2 or my teaching career. Maybe last term was worse, however, because I now know what quality teaching is – or should be – and therefore I’m more aware of how terrible I was and how far short of the mark I fell. To be honest, really honest, I haven’t even wanted to write on this blog all year. I have tried; I’ve shared a few things. Same with Twitter, I force myself to tweet something useful rather than just my own complaints or instagram pictures. Yesterday I even spent 20 minutes scanning the #pblchat tag to try and find some inspiration, or at least RT some tweets that my followers might find interesting.

I don’t know, really, what the source of my despair is… when it comes to the blog and twitter, I’m pretty confident that it’s pressure. The more and more people who follow me on twitter or who subscribe to my blog, the more frozen I’ve become. I keep questioning myself – should I post that? Does that make me sound dumb? Am I being too critical and not celebratory enough? Should I be honest about my failed projects? Why would anyone read this? Am I a hypocrite? I guess the same questions apply to my twitter feed. Am I inspiring enough? Have I pushed the boundaries? How do I use this social media stuff for good? Am I boring? Am I bitter? Have I lost my mojo?

And if I’m truly, truly honest, I think a lot of my anxiety at school stems from my new head of department. There’s nothing wrong with her – she’s actually completely awesome and the best leader I could have wished for, without a word of a lie – but she sort of ‘knew’ about me before she came. That sounds so damn arrogant. Urgh. But basically, she had a certain expectation, or a perception about who I was as a teacher, or what it is that I do or think, or something. I know cos we’ve spoken about this and she says really nice things about being excited to work with me – writing that makes me want to simultaneously gag and cry. I can’t deal with that… and it’s totally not her fault. It’s all mine. Evidently I’ve created some false image of myself via my blog, my tweets and my presentations. Last term I was outed for the fraud I am. My lessons were boring, my projects lame, my teaching didactic, controlling, even bitchy and downright mean at times. My students didn’t get excited about being in my class, they were bored or disinterested. I literally dragged my students through each ‘project’. They didn’t have the response that I seem to expect them to have – or is that just my false presentation of the impact of PBL? Probably.

I spent most of the 11 week term complaining about my students. It was their problem, they are apathetic, they lack knowledge of their world, they are narrow-minded, they are passive learners. I said all of these things in a high pitched voice with arms raised and a distressed facial expression. I did this for 11 weeks. Then the holidays came and I ignored school stuff… three days to school’s return and I’ve done nothing but bemoan the fact that I have to go back. My classroom is ugly; it repels me. There aren’t any projects forthcoming that inspire me. I know that it’s not about me (although the content of this post proves otherwise) but I can’t seem to think that there’s anything I can do (me, I) to make learning more engaging, inspired, challenging, thrilling for my students. I know I’m going to become a sullen cow within a week of term… I’ve lost it. I’ve lost my teaching mojo. I’ve lost all motivation to try. I’m pretty confident that term 2 is going to suck.

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65 thoughts on “I’ve lost my teaching mojo…

  1. Bianca – I’ve been there with losing my mojo too – all the best! It comes back when least expected. It’s completely normal to periodically suck at things. It’s okay to be average sometimes. All the best with finding refreshment. Your mojo will return when it wants to! xxxxxxx

  2. I can’t tell you how sad it makes me to read how you are feeling just now, Bianca, and how familiar that sense of “stuckness” is, as well…

    And yet (and I hope this doesn’t sound too trite or patronising), I hope you can believe, in some little part of your soul, that the operative words there are “just now”. Please believe me when I say to you that I have been there… and have come through to the other side. And even though we have never physically met, that is an insignificant detail – I feel I *know* you, through what I have read in your blogs and your tweets, and I KNOW you will come through this too, in time.

    All will be well. It will. Big hugs, Alex

  3. We never know the impact we have on students (even in the midst of a tear-your-hair out term). I wore a handmade bracelet all of Term 1 that said ‘Dont be boring’ & I explained to kids that asked or saw it that I knew I couldn’t be entertaining or exciting all the time but that I would try not to bore all of them all of the time. My sense of teaching is that we offer what we have when we have it and that is a fluctuating line of energy, enthusiasm and wellness. Be kind to yourself. Take a break if you need it.

    • Kelly, that’s a great idea. I think I need to be more open and less controlling with my junior classes. My year 12 students know I’m a git who just tries her best… juniors just think I’m a bitch πŸ˜›

      • Hi Bianca – your last sentence in this comment resonated. I thought – yep that’s me. When I read your blog I am inspired, amused, challenged, despondent. The range of emotions we all experience as teachers. And yes we all do feel we know you because you have always just been yourself when you blog – you rant, you explain, your reflect, you enthuse. You are emotionally invested in what you say. I am always interested in what you say.
        And I have lost my Mojo many times in 30 + years! I have found that being open with your classes helps, so does recognizing that they can’t be excited, passionate, enthusiastic learners all the time either. Sometimes they are boring (not your lessons!)

  4. You know that’s perfectly normal right? Maybe you are putting too much pressure on you – perhaps you need to take a step back to re-evaluate? Re-connect with people who inspire you. It’s exhausting leading, explaining what you do in your classroom and how it works to people you know and don’t know. Quality teaching day in day out is exhausting and so is doing something that is challenges the status quo of teaching. The honesty of your blogs as you are on this journey makes them compelling reading – because I can relate to your highs and lows! How can authentically allow your students to fail forward – if you don’t allow yourself the same? Term 2 is going to be busy (Term 2 and Term 4 are my least favourite terms) what is something school or non school related that you can focus on to give you inspiration to get through?

    • Laura, it feels insane. I guess it is normal, but it’s not a good feeling at all. I am trying my best to stay positive, but I think this is a rut I’ve been carving out for a little while. Could taking some clawing out of, to be honest. I am heading OS end of term, that will keep me going πŸ™‚

  5. Hi Bianca

    I’ll bet the term wasn’t as bad as you are making out, you just have really high standards for yourself! I think all great teachers feel like this at times.

    Why don’t you ask the learners?
    Have them reflect on last term. What worked for them? What didn’t? What would motivate them?
    Give them an opportunity to be active co-constructors of their own learning process, rather than just do PBL projects set by you. Do they have ownership? Do they have a voice?
    I love this post by Kath Murdoch http://justwonderingblog.com/2014/02/21/how-do-inquiry-teachers-teach/

    Forget about your followers. When you’re ready to share something interesting, the ones who count will still be there.

    Good luck for the new term.

    • Thanks Edna. You’re always so positive and so great at presenting a new challenge. It’s easy to whinge and complain on here but much harder to sit and talk openly about it to the ones who matter – the students. I’ll do my best!

  6. What Lizzie said . Totally. Self doubt can be paralysing Bianca and I know that feeling well. Please take heart that it is just not you who is or has experienced this. I also think that for truly reflective people , this is par for the course and as such , looking outward and not inward is part of the key to moving on . For me , the key was doing something different for a while, something in Ed that ignited my passion. It did and I loved it madly. Returning from that was also very difficult though,the tension between What could be, What has to be, What is ……this I find hardest, working within these frames and focusing energy on them. The beauty is that just when you feel you are at the lowest or your head might be butting the proverbial wall, a student or staff member can share the smallest thing that reminds me of why I do it and love it. That said , I think it’s natural to assess our direction at certan stages of our career . Give yourself a break, be kind and not a self critic , trust your heart and your mojo ….and it will lead you . xx

    • I am loving my year 12 classes atm… love the texts, love the kids, love being in the class with them. The juniors, not so much. It’s like pulling teeth! I just have to grin and bear it πŸ˜›

      • It happens Bianca , kinda part of the roller coaster cycle of a teaching career methinks … Plus passion is naturally exhausting , giving your all , building relationships . Knowing how to ride your own coaster and enjoy it is different for everyone πŸ™‚ but one things for sure , it’s a ride we all take .

  7. Be kind to yourself. You’ve just done way more evaluation of your teaching than most others do. Don’t forget – that ‘average’ teaching occasionally by inspiring teachers is a much better learning environment for the kids than average teaching by average teachers – which, sadly still exists.

    • Thanks, Linda. I haven’t done any school work for two weeks, so I guess that’s me being kind to myself… although to be honest it’s just adding to the stress :O

  8. Yep, welcome to teaching. In 22 years (I hate that I sound so old!!) I’ve lost my mojo plenty of times, we all have. I don’t know any good teachers who haven’t sat back and despaired about what they were doing and had to force themselves to keep going. Good teachers care about what they do and they care about making it good for their students. Maybe it’s the pressure, maybe it’s the feeling you have that you have to be the uber-teacher just to be enough, but don’t let it get on top of you. Go back to the basics, what works and what makes you feel good about what you’re doing. Me, I read your blog because I love knowing that out there there are other people who care about finding a different way because it might just work. I saw an ex-student yesterday who was beautiful and clever but hated school and left as soon as she could with nothing more than a School Certificate, who still doesn’t know what she wants out of life, but who is working and a productive member of society. We agreed that sometimes the problem was an institution that just didn’t fit the people who were in it. And sometimes, that’s my motivation to keep going – caring about where ‘my kids’ will be in 5years or 20 years time, not just their NAPLAN or HSC results. Hang in there, focus on the small stuff and the mojo will come back. Honest.

    • This is a really reassuring comment, thanks so much! You’re right… I LOVE chatting to ex-students (although it’s getting harder and harder to remember names!) and they always have such lovely things to say. I just need to find my teaching happy place again… fingers crossed it’s still out there somewhere!

  9. Dance. Make a fool of yourself in front of a class. I did an interpretive dance to explain a marking criteria to a yr 7 class. I went from “attempts” up to “with flair”. The students thought I was a tool but they understood the criteria and they have now lost any apprehension or fear in my classroom. It was fun as well.

    Maybe just play some tunes to them and get them to dance.
    Have some fun on the first day.

    • Oh, Matt – you’re awesome. See, this is the spirit of risk-taking and joy that I am missing. I am scared to do that kind of thing. I don’t know why… urgh! I need to just be silly again… serious Bianca is boring πŸ˜‰

  10. Thank you for posting something so honest and real. Im sorry you’re feeling like you’ve lost your mojo. I think it happens to all of us from time to time in teaching. Teaching can be very isolating and we question our capabilities, responsibilities and achievements. Try reflecting on your incredible professional accomplishments so far, to regain your mojo. Have confidence it will come back.

  11. You always have the kids’ learning interests at heart…that is why you will get through this.

    Thank god you keep it real for us with your honest posts…I thought I was the only one dreading Monday and feeling a tsunami of self doubt.

    PS. You’re human.

      • Discussed your blog post with my husband (also a teacher) and he reminded me of his favourite quote:

        “The greater danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that it is too low and we hit it.”
        ~ Michelangelo

        I reckon it’s one to live by and fits nicely with what we aim to achieve. πŸ™‚

  12. Bianca, I’ve been teaching for more than 30 years. I love it – and, like you, have been involved in the profession well beyond ‘my own classroom’ most of that time. The phrase ‘I’ve lost my mojo’ has come out of my own mouth MANY times over the years. The only difference these days is that, when it happens, I trust it will return. It always does. You have a fire in your belly as a teacher – that is obvious from your inspiring posts – but like all things, there will be times when that fire is burning low…when it is just a few, glowing embers. But it’s always there. I think we almost NEED to give ourselves some time when we release ourselves from our own high expectations and stop furiously feeding the flames. Even our greatest passions wax and wane. Go easy on yourself and trust in all the amazing work you have done so far to keep those embers burning without the need to stoke the fire. It’ll spark back up. πŸ™‚

    • Hey Kath, thanks for your comment. Love the fire metaphor… I wonder if my embers are glowing, more like smouldering, haha. I am kinda just hoping that if I chat to the kids, they’ll tell me how to fix it. It’s also kinda scary to admit to students that I’ve failed them 😦

  13. I couldn’t put it any better than all those above. Be kind to yourself and realise you are not superhuman – that first week you have planned would put me in the fetal position in a corner. You have passion for what you do ….. your mojo will return.

    • Thanks Sue… it is a BIG week. I just don’t wanna be a fraud when presenting on Monday. Hmmm… being kind to yourself is like really hard when you feel like a suckish teacher, haha!

      • The ideas you are presenting about soon are excellent and do work in classes. Even if you feel a bit mojo-less at the moment, what you will be training people about does work and you do have many memories and real examples from your classes which bear that out. It’s all real – the good PBL processes to support student learning and the boring lessons – it’s a real mixture and teachers will learn a lot.

  14. Don’t be a fraud. Don’t pretend. Be honest. Just as you have done in this post. They will appreciate you for it. The more you do, the better you become, the greater your expectations, until improvement is an all-consuming monster, devouring everything in its path, including the realisation of your value and achievements. Be kind to yourself. Value and praise yourself as you would another. Don’t see yourself as wanting. Regardless of what more you think you could/should be doing, remember you have a lot to offer and your mediocre is another’s goal. Hang in there. Take the pressure off. No one expects more, or as much, of you as you do!

    • Hi Mike, oh yes, I still believe in it! Absolutely! I think what makes it so hard for me is that I am so excited about the projects and when my students aren’t (or they find them very challenging) I get really frustrated. I think it’s really important to ensure that students can have success and feel proud with their projects and that’s something I forgot last term.
      I continue to be passionate about PBL.

  15. Hi, I’m totally with you in the feelings of ‘lost teaching mojo’. Term 1 was a long and difficult term. I’m lucky I am getting a term out of the classroom to work with teachers. I’m hoping that I miss it all desperately and come back refreshed and reinvigorated ready to reattempt the fails of term 1.
    I am totally in awe of all the things you achieve as per twitter and I suspect that despite how you are feeling about it all, you will be a superstar presenter on Monday. I know I’d love to be there.
    Hope the term presents some lovely surprises of success and renewal

    • Congrats on the new gig, Jen! It does revive you, I think… last year I was off one day a weel for two terms teaching at uni and it was great. I DID miss my students and was happy on my return. I hope Monday is a success – don’t wanna scare the teachers, haha.

  16. get your kids to paint your classroom, and make it a new learning space that you can all be excited about, cover the walls with words and symbols – a room that screams a love of English. Turn it into a PBL moment, give them time to research language, find snippets of poetry that resonate with their lives but also show a mastery of the language, then at the end of the term they go for it. They then become their own public audience because they’ll be working in it for the rest of the year.

    • Hi Trent… if I wrote something else today I would have been a fraud. It’s 100% how I feel. Thanks for the link – wow, awesome! he wrote what I feel… weird and cool. Thanks heaps!

  17. Don’t forget you’ve got the end of holiday bluuuuuues…and that when you get back to school and see some of your more favourite classes, it’ll be better than you’re imagining x

    How much PBL do you do with your junior grades? It seems to me that PBL is a powerful but energy consuming model for learning and maybe can only be used about… half (?) the time for teachers to keep fresh. What do you think?

    Tell us what you are thinking of doing with your juniors, if you feel like it πŸ™‚

    • Yeah… really looking forward to seeing year 12 but we have no classes until the week after. Love them to bit! Totally agree re: PBL being time-consuming and energy-draining. I’m not doing it with year 7 for first three weeks – we’re blogging. Probably just as much work πŸ˜›

  18. Bianca, like others above, I’ve been teaching a long time – 25 years now. And like others, I love the profession and cannot even think of what I might do other than teach. There have also been countless periods of “black” – when I despair about my own hypocrisy as a teacher (especially now as Leader of Pedagogy when I cater for everyone else first and find myself often winging it when it comes to my own Year 7s – hate myself for that) – so I can sympathise completely. But what makes you so compelling to follow and read and know is not your perfection or your incredible skill and expertise (although we all learn heaps from you) but your honesty and generosity in sharing your journey. You cannot physically or emotionally continue to give to your students, your colleagues or your online community without taking some much needed time to replenish your own well. As Edna said, don’t feel compelled to keep giving to others – your online persona is only part of who you are, but not all. Take time not just away from schoolwork, but to feed yourself – read some great novels, read other blogs, get to know your students – and hang out with your gorgeous family. Your spark will come back – your passion runs to deep to be fully extinguished! As Dr. Seuss wisely says, “Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.” Best wishes…x

    • Thanks for sharing your wisdom with me, Denise. I totally feel like this! Like I’ve spent too much time trying to tell people how awesome I am that I’ve actually got no time to even be a little bit good, haha. I need to try to relax a bit. Hope your journey is smooth at the moment.

  19. I feel you. I taught for 10 years and then lost my path completely. It is a hard job. People do not get the emotional toll it takes on you. I spent last year soul searching. Ive since decided I cant do it any more and have returned to study to try something new. Good luck finding yourself again πŸ™‚

  20. Hi Bianca, I haven’t read what all the others above have said, but I’m reasonably confident to think that they’ll be saying ‘you’ll be fine, it’ll come back’! Most who have been around a bit would know that things wax and wane a bit in teaching.

    I remember my first permanent position in teaching it was in what some would have described as a difficult area….I had a year 5 class and I had them again as a year 6 class, we had a bond that I found to be rewarding….we worked well together, we bonded as I did with other first year teachers at the school….it was truly a special year.

    There have definitely been great moments since. Teaching kindergarten and caring for a terminally ill student isn’t something one would normally see as a ‘highlight’ in teaching but surprisingly it is. I worked well with a colleague and our classes were part of our family. The parents of the little girl who lasted 5 months in our care have become friends built on the knowledge that I cared for her and built a relationship with their daughter. Those memories are etched in my mind, the minds of the parents and in the kindy kids in our classes.

    A more recent high has been team teaching year 6 last year. It was touted by me as my best year of teaching ever! I even considered cancelling my LSL as I was enjoying myself and loving the connection we had with the kids! We were all genuinely sad to see the year end.

    This year I was excited to be with the same team again. I will say, it is NOT the same as last year….I was craving these holidays. I was needing these holidays. What has changed? I’ve asked myself over and over….is it me, my attitude, the kids, the size of the class, the weather, my lack of sleep…..the questions could be endless….but is it worth wasting time worrying over it, no as life is far too short to spend time worrying! Instead, I’m confident that the kids are working and my colleagues and I are still on the same page….however I have been teaching long enough now (some may say too long) to know that a new term brings new adventures and rather than starting with a negative approach…I’m just going to take it as it comes and roll with it….I don’t have to over prepare, spend every moment thinking about work or worrying about what others think of me. Being comfortable in my own skin helps to overcome that anxiety. It has taken a long time to get to this stage and it’s certainly not that I don’t care, because I do….it’s just a bit of an understanding of myself that I’ve come to realise with the help of my family, my friends, my colleagues and the classes I’ve worked with.

    Sorry this turned out to be a long winded diatribe. But you will be ok when you realise you will be ok! An old saying is ‘what you miss out on the merry-go-round, you pick up on the Ferris wheel…..teaching is like that.

    By mid term chances are you’ll have found a second wind and flying ahead! πŸ˜„

    • This comment is GOLD, thanks Bonnie! It is completely weird, right? You think you’ve got it all sorted and then BAM it doesn’t work anymore and you feel like a first year teacher again. Love your philosophy about self-knowledge… I’m not there yet. One day!

  21. We all go through this, especially when something which was successful in the past proves difficult.
    I am currently going through this. With my year 6 class last year, pbl was awesome and fun. This year, year 6 again, behaviour and social skills issues have meant that it has been largely unsuccessful. I have had to scale right back and work on social skills and problematise things like classroom cohesion. This has been partially successful but onward and upwards-redefine the steps that will get us to our final goals, right?
    While I have not commented before, I love your blog. You inspire your readers. You are also clearly a perfectionist. You know what they say, the best thing about you is also the worst thing about you. Your passion and perfectionism mean that you are great teacher, they are also the reason why you feel like this. It will pass.

    I’m sure term 2 will be a lot better. Try to laugh everyday and make sure that you do non teacher things-I like wine πŸ˜‰

    • Hello Barbara! It always suprises me that people actually, properly read what I write here. Often it’s so rambling and silly, haha. Today I just HAD to get this off my chest, it was really gnawing at me and it’s been so wonderfully reassuring to read all of the lovely posts and wise words. I think you’re very perceptive – I am a perfectionist and it’s a big problem sometimes. It makes it hard for me to accept less than perfect from my students, or less than perfect lessons, projects etc. Thanks so much for commenting, please do so again!

  22. Expectations not only met but exceeded.

    It’s not about the public success, the triumphs, the celebrations. They’re cool, and important for sure. But they aren’t the mark of a great teacher.

    The best teachers are the ones who struggle and strive and angst and stumble and doubt, because they’re the ones who are invested. Genuinely. And that comes at a cost.

    Every day we get to spend time with young people. And I think it’s important to remember that that relationship matters. A lot. Sometimes more than we realise. Will those kids remember the shitty lessons? The boring ones? The ones that went awry? Or will they remember you? The relationship they had with you? The ways you did your best to show them how to learn and discover and create?

    I don’t really care how many impressive statistics a teacher can rattle off, or how much they can sell their success. That’s all well and good, but personally, I’m excited by working with people who give a shit. And not surprisingly, they’re the ones who do lose their mojo, because they’re just so invested, and with that level of passion, the highs will inevitably be high, and the lows will really suck. They’re also the ones who get the most frustrated by the confines of the unwieldy system of which we are a part, and the challenges our students present us with. But they’re also the ones who keep looking for ways to do it better, because they know how much what we do matters.
    They’re the ones who think and try and push and who sometimes win and sometimes fail. But the point is….they know it matters and they care about the lives of their students and the world we all share, and the world we want to create.

    I hope your mojo returns. But more than that, I hope you don’t lose sight of what it is that makes a teacher inspiring, cause you’ve got that bucket loads.

    • Oh no! You read this! Cry… so embarrassing. I had a complete brain vomit… or heart vomit cos this post certainly has no brains. I love what you said about relationships, and as you know, I think that’s what I have struggled with the most this term. I guess it’s hard in first term, when we don’t know each other and what to expect. Next term they’ll know me better (and my weirdly random teaching ways) and I’ll know them and their interests and strengths and weaknesses… it’ll be OK. I hope my mojo returns as well cos it’s gonna be a hard 7 weeks with bitchy Bianca in the staffroom, lol.
      Thanks so much for taking the time to write such a powerful comment… you don’t know how much it helps! See you Tuesday πŸ™‚

  23. Hey Bianca. I don’t know what the others have said, but I think you’re doing a great job in inspiring people. I know you have at times, and I’ve even got inspire enough to give my year 10 class a turn at using edmodo this year due to all the things you’ve said and done in the past.
    But it’s more than that. What you write, whether you think it’s great or horrible, always makes me think. And fun. Don’t give up on yourself just because you’ve had a bad term. Heck, it can’t be as bad as my whole year a couple of years ago. You’ll pull yourself through this,and get inspired and think of things to help your students again. Just remember what made you become a teacher in the first place, go through some of your first projects, and see what you might be able to get thoughts and ideas about for the future. You can do it.
    And I hope this doesn’t seem like a ramble. Too much wedding stuff on my mind!

    • Hi Janelle,
      This is an awesome bunch of advice! And thanks for saying the nice things about me and my blog, seriously, it means so much to me to think that I inadvertently help someone or someone’s students even when I feel like things might not be working the best for me and my students.
      Good luck with the wedding prep! πŸ˜€

  24. Pingback: Christopher Kerschen » Reflection #8: I’ve lost my teaching mojo…

  25. I wonder if it might reduce your stress and increase student engagement if you let students choose their own project? One wise mentor teacher once told me, do not do for students anything they could be doing for themselves. It seems to me that juniors and seniors should be capable of choosing a topic and designing their own PBL experience, with you to guide them, and with all of the wonderful examples you must have accumulated to share with them if they need inspiration!

    Thanks for writing such an honest post! It is easy to come off as superhuman when writing a blog. πŸ™‚

  26. Seems like it’s ‘Mojo Gone Missing Month’. The posts and comments are comforting and helpful – thanks everyone, you may just get me through the first day back. I spent the holidays stressing, thinking through: what am I doing wrong? Then I realized, it’s not about me. I’m here, alive, being a part of everyone else’s life. Today I’m going to focus on the smiles on the kids as they come through the door. My mistakes and imperfections can’t be that bad if they are happy to be here?
    The Choice Literacy article helped me to get my mojo back: http://www.choiceliteracy.com/articles-detail-view.php?id=1995
    Now, for that interpretive dance…
    Cheers
    Brette
    @brettelockyer

  27. I read your post with interest as I am going through a similar scenario starting at a new school. Living up to perceived expectations can be crippling if we let it become our focus. I took some time to chat with my principal about my feelings which helped produce some clarity. Take some time to get back to what makes you happy in the classroom – let go of curriculum for a few days and focus on relationships. Have some fun with your students. Some people have already suggested surveying your students this was very helpful for me as I was able to ‘see’ things from their perspectives. Good luck with finding your mojo – don’t worry about your blog – that will come with positive experiences in your classroom

  28. Well…I am so fortunate to work on staff with this awesome teacher, Bianca Hewes, who has inspired and revolutionised the way that I teach. Coming from a HSIE background, she has opened my eyes to a whole new pedagogy and English/PBL is something that I can talk about for hours. Even though you may not feel that you have inspired your students in the last term, you have informed and enlightened me and others in ways that I never thought possible. I’m very certain that others reading your blog feel the same way. Keep fighting the good fight because ultimately, you’re at the forefront of what we need to do for our students.

  29. Thanks for sharing, Bianca. It’s reassuring to know that even the most virtuoso teachers (you!) have times of trial. Rest assured, only the best have such times of critical reflection!

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