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YOU are the Most Important Asset.

Finger Pointing” by Kevin Sequeira/ CC0 1.0

You are it. You are where it all begins.

Show up with your head and your heart. Just by showing up for your students, you have already given your students the most important and effective element of your lesson.

Please stop, and take that in. You, the teacher, are the most important asset.

As teachers, we toil over lessons. We attend workshops- absorbing the latest and greatest methods for teaching our students to write, to read, to infer. We wrangle with how to best teach our students to create meaning in math, how to help our students implement the scientific method, how to support all of the beautiful connections.

It is overwhelming to create the effective classroom of our dreams, where all of the ideas and methods we take in are implemented in the ways they’re presented.

Please, give yourself a break.

Give yourself a break, and KNOW YOUR WORTH. 

There is nothing more important than the teacher in the classroom. You are the most valuable asset. Your presence, your energy, the culture you build with your students, your connections- there is nothing more important than you.

I wish I had been told that early and often. It is likely the most important thing a teacher needs to know. It should be sprinkled on our oatmeal, written on our lattes.

There is research to back this up.

I like data. I like research.

Professor John Hattie, renowned educational researcher out of Melbourne Educational Research Institute, is all about data to find out what makes for an effective education. His research backs up your importance.

Professor Hattie and his team looked at 252 factors that impact a student’s achievement.

#1:Effective Teacher.

#3:Teacher’s belief in student’s abilities.

So, if you, the effective teacher believe in the possibilities of your students, you can lift your students’ achievements by leaps and bounds. (Just FYI, #2 is self-reported grades, an interesting topic for another day. Just in case you were wondering. See Hattie chart in more research for further details on this study.)

John Hattie’s “Visible Learning” has a comprehensive website that is good fun to explore if you want to dig in further.

According to a 2012 study by economists Raj ChettyJohn N. Friedman & Jonah E. Rockoff, an effective teacher can increase a student’s potential earnings by $250,000.

From Cicero, a Management Consulting Company: The “Teacher Effect”

RAND- Public Policy Research Company: Teachers Matter.

Dr. Julie Hasson, Qualitative Education Research: Teachers We Remember TEDx Talk

There is much more, but you get the idea.


Why am I writing this?

I so want you to take heart. The work is difficult, draining, exhausting, invigorating, heartening, important. As you undoubtedly struggle to juggle everything being asked of you, know that you showing up is a huge success for your students.

It’s you. Put down the worries about mastering the newest program presented in your staff meeting yesterday. Remember that YOU and your effective ways are the most important assets predicting your students’ success.

You are it. You are where it all begins.

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