Passport to Success
Part II: Lessons Learned and Advice for the First Year and Veteran Teacher

Always be mindful of the people around you. Do you know what's going on in your students' lives?

Take time to get to know each of your students as individuals. The READ 180 students have hopes, dreams, concerns, worries, people that love them, and careers and families of their own ahead of them. Some of your students might be coming from very difficult situations that you might not know about until you gain their trust. Let all of your students know you are there for them, in and out of the classroom. Everybody wants a strong force by their side that is going to be a constant supporter! Even if the student sitting in your class doesn't have that at home, you can be the one they can count on!

If this story, from The Houston Post, August 24, 1989 edition, doesn't change your life on how you look at each individual you come in contact with, I don't know what will! Read and remember that you can make a positive difference in someone's life. Be that special person your students look forward to being their best for everyday. Once your students know you care they will work through the READ 180 program with fidelity and that's a win--win for everyone!

Change your attitude and busyness with this story from HIS LANDLADY.

     "Yesterday was an old man's birthday. He was 91, and "home" was a small rented room with cooking privileges. He awakened earlier than usual, bathed, shaved, and put on his best clothes. Surely they would come today, he thought. 

     He wouldn't take his daily walk to the gas station to visit with the old-timers of the neighborhood because he wanted to be right here when they came. 

     He sat on the front porch with a clear view of the road so he could see them coming. Surely they would come today.

     He'd skip his noon nap that day because he wanted to be up when they came.

     He has six children. Two of his daughters and their married children live within a few miles. They hadn't been to see him for a long time, and today was his birthday. Surely they would come.

     At suppertime, his landlady brought him some ice cream and a small cake, but he didn't eat it. He was saving it to have with "them" when they came.

     Nighttime came and the old gentleman went to his room to retire. But first he knocked on his landlady's door and said, "Promise to wake me when they come."

     It was his birthday and he was 91."

Some of our kids have had their birthdays forgotten, their progress and report cards unnoticed, and no kind words of praise spoken. Don't let them go another day in your classroom without you noticing their new haircut or hair style, a perfect smile in your class, an enthusiastic answer, a kind word to a classmate or to you, finishing another book, pushing in a chair, offering assistance to a classmate, completing answers in their rBook or ReaL Book, being on time, and having good attendance. Be the one that they talk about when they are asked "Who had an influence on you?", "What teacher do you remember?", or "Who stood beside you and supported your goals and dreams?"

Be the ONE they will always remember!

Stage C READ 180 Educator

Philosophy of Teaching All of my life, I have enjoyed working with children and have always desired to teach. It is my belief that no matter what socio-economic background, everyone deserves to achieve his/her educational goals. It is my ambition to facilitate this process.Growing up in the Houston area, I have always been aware of the Cypress-Fairbanks School District. The district's reputation of excellence is well known, not only in the Houston metroplex, but throughout the state of Texas. As a professional educator, it is important to be associated with a school district whose goals for its students are aligned with my philosophy of teaching.