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Teaching or Overteaching

How much support is too much support? (215) This is my daily dilemma. I have to start out by arranging circumstances--practically aligning the planets, really--so that each of my students experiences his or her first literacy success, many times the first success since elementary school. Just like my own children, it's the weaning that is the hardest part.

Sometimes under pressure of time (because my students are with me for such a short time), I find myself doing so much for them instead of with them, hastening the process of building a positive, trusting relationship. It takes a long time to allow students to attempt, internalize, fail, and build enough resilience to try again.

Gallagher's last chapter is a powerful reminder to me to teach like I parent, with extreme patience and a long term vision.


One of your strengths is "extreme patience and long term vision". You are a teacher to teachers.

Ditto! I think this extreme patience that is needed is so important, but at times I'm at my wit's end and digging deep for it. I guess all we can do is take it one day at a time.

Jen, your entry moves me because "patience" is the lesson I feel that I continue to learn... and need to keep learning. School (with the way it divides up our time into class periods, semesters, etc.) seems to have a clock ticking in the background all the time, making seeing beyond the short term and having patience all the more difficult-- but important-- to do.