This year I have taught the same way I have always taught but with an entherisise on helping them mature as adults. Getting them working with other people in a professional way, to be better communicaters and gain more life skills as well as how to be hairdressers of course!
Its been a very 'full' year and probably my best year yet.
I started my teaching year this year as I do every year by recalling a teacher called Mrs. Mc Lochlin.
When my first child started school I noticed Mrs Mc Lochlin was the only teacher who, when the children were all in lines in the playground, waiting to go into their classrooms, would go down the line and speak to each child individually.
Saying things like, ' your hair looks nice today' thats a pretty dress you have on' or ' is that a new hair slide? She found something nice to say for each child. I remember looking at the childrens faces and saw how special she made them feel.
From that day I promised myself to be that teacher who made her students feel important and special no matter how small the compliment might be or how hard it might be to find one!
I couldn’t agree more with author, Madeline Levine, who states, “The biggest impact you’ll have as a teacher is the relationship you establish with your student.”
So in my first year of teaching I experienced the power of believing in each and every student and how doing so has made an enormous difference to every one taught.
Thirteen years later, many of them still keep in touch, I know how they are doing, where they are, career paths they’ve chosen, and number of children they’ve had. ( now that makes me feel old!) some still ask me for hairdressing advice for something they haven't come across before.
I also know they remember me and know that I cared about them. To this day, I hear the odd Auntie Lisa being shouted when I'm in town and they will rush over to show me or tell me some news they have.
Yes, this year has been hard, one of my hardest yet but also the most enjoyable and rewarding I have ever had.
Recording their journey on this blog has been a wonderful experience and not only shows how they have grown but they have seen for themselves a change.
A change in how they react to situations, approach tasks and problems, of course the many hairdressing techniques they have conquered and their I.T skills ....well ...we have learnt together on that!
On reflection, showing the students how much you care, how special and how important they are from the begining has been a must as well as everyday reassurance.
The trips out, the team building, the tantrums, tears, laughter and the much needed hot chocolate and cake moments have all been a part of this year and would I change anything?
A few moments yes but on the whole... What an amazing year.
I cant wait to see how they progress on the level two programmes and beyond.
Heres to next year! When I will remember again.
“If we do not secure their hearts, we do not have a shot at their brains.”
Thank you Mrs Mc Lochlin.