"I am not a teacher. I am an awakener."
2. Spirit Whisperer Contemplation [back
Remember Gandhi's line, "We must be the change we want to see happen
world"? Is there a way to be the change you want to see happen in
your classroom? Why not implement that change when you return from the
"About 100 percent of first graders walk in on the first day and
are interested in this thing called reading. Eighty percent of graduating
high school seniors tell us they will never again voluntarily read another
----Kylene Byers, Yale University researcher
4. Newsletter Update [back
The Response-Able Educator Newsletter may not be delivered as regularly
it has been in the past.
I have recently undergone a major operation to remove cancer and now
face several months of chemo and radiation. This challenge will take most
of my energy and effort. Please add me to your prayer list, and send me
positive thoughts and energy.
I will work on this newsletter as I feel able. It is uplifting for me
to share these concepts with others; doing so provides me with a sense
of purpose and service.
Do not be surprised if there is some disruption of schedule. Also, I
may recycle some articles from earlier editions.
Thank you for your understanding and prayers.
"Spirit Whisperers believe that when we teach students to look
themselves for the most important answers in life, we have them facing
wrong direction. Spirit Whisperers honor the Principle of Inner Knowing
help students look inward by using the phrase and philosophy, 'Check it
All of us know what we need to know. It's in every one of us. Call it
gut-level feeling, intuition, inner knowing, conscience, listening to
the wise part within, inner authority, or whatever other label you are
comfortable using. Regardless of its name, it is there, waiting to be
accessed whenever we are ready and able to call it forth."
If you liked this paragraph, you will love "Spirit Whisperers: Teachers
Nourish a Child's Spirit" by Chick Moorman. Available through Personal
Power Press at (toll-free) 877-360-1477, or at email@example.com. ($24.95,
Spotted on a wall in the media center in the middle school in Marlette,
FIGHT PRIME TIME
READ A BOOK
7. Article: New Year's Resolutions [back to top]
By Chick Moorman
Spirit Whisperers' New Year's Resolutions:
In 2004, I resolve not to teach children to have a happy, productive
but rather to help them choose a happy, productive day.
I resolve to design lessons to help students appreciate that there is
such thing as failure, only temporary results that students can use as
feedback to determine their next step.
I resolve to fix problems rather than fix blame by maintaining a
solution-seeking mindset and teaching students a problem-solving process.
I resolve to aid students in their struggle with autonomy by creating
balance of power through a shared-control style of classroom management.
I resolve to remember that I want children to behave in ways that reflect
what THEY now find unacceptable, not in ways that I, the teacher, find
I resolve to welcome interpersonal skill errors as learning experiences
as important opportunities to implement consequences.
I resolve to teach in a way that demonstrates that I believe the only
authority children take with them everywhere they go is their inner
I resolve to allow my responses to students to reflect a knowing that
lapses in self-control are developmentally appropriate. I remember they
certain behaviors because they are 5 or 8 or 14 years old.
I resolve to aid children in their ability to make "BE" choices
as well as
I resolve to teach in a way that reflects my belief that the process
important as the product.
I resolve to remember that I don't have to punish children for their
They are already being punished for their anger.
When I am stumped and don't know how to respond to a student, I promise
ask myself, "What would love do now?" I also intend to listen
for an answer.
I resolve to recall that I can choose to see any classroom situation
differently from the way I have been seeing it. I will remember that
perception is always a choice.
I resolve to relax, remembering that relaxing does not mean resigning.
I resolve to make my approach to teaching reflect the notion that education
is more about drawing out what already exists in a student than it is
putting in to fill perceived deficiencies.
I resolve to focus on the main purpose of education, the creation of
and what I really am as a human being.
I resolve to remember that "being right" doesn't work.
I resolve to teach as if I believe that a child's I AM's (I am athletic,
am creative, etc.) are more important than his or her IQ.
I resolve to live today as if attitudes were more easily caught than
I resolve to help students and myself stay conscious of the choices we
I resolve to remember the adage, "If you want a behavior, you have
a behavior," and I resolve to put that adage into practice in my
I resolve to teach for wisdom, which is knowledge applied. I will remember
that children are not in school to pass a test, earn a 9-week grade, or
memorize a poem. They are in school to learn to apply knowledge to their
own individual lives.
I resolve to stay conscious of the fact that information doesn't make
happy. No one ever got a divorce, became abusive to self or others, or
began an addiction because he or she didn't know the capitals of all 50
I resolve to help students live in more uplifting ways, reflecting the
notion that school is more than a preparation for life. It is life.
I resolve to see the hurting child in the child that hurts.
I resolve to "be" the change I wish to see in education.
I resolve to avoid fighting the educational world that is and work to
forth the educational world that could be.
Chick Moorman is the author of "Spirit Whisperers: Teachers Who Nourish
Child's Spirit," and "Parent Talk: How to Talk to Your Child
That Builds Self-Esteem and Encourages Responsibility." Both books
available from Personal Power Press at (toll-free) 877-360-1477 or at
firstname.lastname@example.org. Chick Moorman publishes FREE E-newsletters for parents
educators. Contact him at email@example.com to get your free subscription
one or both newsletters.
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