Reflecting forward

I’m a perfectionist.  

It’s a curse.

I will “beat myself up” for days over something that I feel I could have done differently, should have done differently.  I have a hard time releasing these moments.  The blessing of these is that I am willing to learn from my experiences and try different tactics should similar situations arise.

While my continual recounting of whatever it was keeps me up at night … not all the time, thankfully … I own this.

~*~

I asked my staff to reflect on how they feel the school year went.  I’ve done this the last few years and I really value the feedback I get from the folks I work with.  I believe it helps all of us become better educators; the feedback definitely helps me in planning for the next school year and I take all their responses very seriously.  My paraprofessionals don’t like this little exercise.  They grumble every time I send out the requests.  Interestingly, they are the most reflective and give me the most helpful ideas.  They’re so silly!

~*~

I’m having a hard time wrapping my brain around the fact that we only have 8 instructional days left before we release the students for summer break.  

Eight days.  

Less than two weeks.  

Wow.

~*~

So, what went right this year?

  • I had a great time preparing for the beginning of the year.  I really believe the team-building activities we did helped ease all the new staff in my department into our culture with just a few glitches.
  • I’m still a long way from where I want to be, but I think I did well in applying what I learned in my graduate coursework into actual practice.
  • Oh yeah … I GRADUATED!  

Where do I need to improve & what can I do?

  • Communication.  I don’t think I’ll ever have this one nailed.  While I am better communicating with my colleagues and administrators at various levels, there’s always room for improvement.  The area where I really stunk was in parent communication.  Not that I wasn’t willing to speak to parents.  That’s not the case!  I had some very intense parents to deal with that required a lot of time and I just wasn’t able to continually update them on every. assignment. their son/daughter. failed.  Realistically, I’ll never have that time and I delegated some of the responsibility out; I do need to come up with an equitable solution so I’m not continually pulled in multiple directions and they’re not feeling neglected.
  • Time management.  I let a lot of activities take priority and I lost focus.  Which lead to sleepless nights because I had to bring work home in order to get everything done.  Did I mention I’m incredibly hard on myself & I’m still not that good at delegating or saying, “No?”
  • I didn’t follow-through on the book study.  I really, really wanted my department to finish the book study of How full is your bucket?  We at least started it this year.  We didn’t even get that far the year before.  Next year … we’re finishing what we start!  I need to make sure there are enough copies for everybody and then plan the calendar to discuss it.

~*~

I guess I should attempt to rest.  I’ve been up for several hours in the quiet of this early morning and I need to release all of my perceived failings and focus on the victories of this school year.  

And there were many!

Did I mention I graduated?

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