Sunday, June 19, 2011

Success is hard: The realization that love is not enough

fathers_day I’m sitting at my breakfast room table on Father’s Day morning and thinking about how easy it is to love my children, yet how hard it is to be a parent.  Love alone is not enough.  If it was, then the parenting part would be easier.  The love may keep us from losing our minds and provide the necessary foundation for good parenting, but love alone is not sufficient.

How does this relate to education?

Loving our students is not enough.  Caring about them is not enough.  Wanting the best for them is not enough.

Sure the love, care, and hope are all critical as a foundation for success, but they require additional pieces to make a true difference.

Here is a list of additional qualities that help complete the profile of an effective educator (and parent).  Feel free to add to the list.

  • Patience
  • Skill
  • Good communication (clear and disciplined)
  • Accept that you need to let students “fall” a few times as part of the learning process
  • Organized
  • High standards, reasonable expectations, unwavering support
  • You’re not incompetent is you ask for directions
  • Actively engage with students
  • Never let students leave feeling that you do not care
  • Take time to play as well as work
  • Get comfortable with the idea that you are the only one who will ever take out the garbage (Ok, maybe that one is for dads only!) :)

And to all the dads out there, Happy Father’s Day!

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