It's that time again across the State of Florida. It's FCAT frenzy. All students beginning at grade 3rd to 12th will be participating in standardized testing. This post isn't to rant about how much I hate the test (even though I do). I've learned to play the cards I am dealt (so far I’ve been winning). I love teaching/coaching and until the FCAT goes away (if it ever does) I am going to go into classrooms daily and spread my love of learning.
So why am I writing about this crazy time? No particular reason than to celebrate the positive in place to help our students succeed. Most of the discussion about the test would have you believe that students are grinding daily without any doses of love, care and tenderness. That's because my MS hasn't been showcased. Today the Principal changed the music that signals class change (we don't have bells). He selected R. Kelly's 'I Believe I Can Fly."
The day was so positive and the kids got a kick out of the Principal, Assistant Principal and I singing all on the same key, out loud and strong. We had movements to fly and soared around the main office hallway entrance like superheroes. It was fantabulous (yes, this is a word)!! What we communicated to the students today was they are capable of achieving any dream, mastering the FCAT, making an A in their science class, being kind to a student on crutches or setting an example by wearing their pants pulled up with a belt or the buttons to their collared shirt closed and still be a cute teen girlie girl.
Yes, FCAT is upon us (sighs) but we can use this time to teach students relaxation techniques. Remain calm, believe in them and most importantly be there to cheer them on even if it means you have to do something silly like sing in the hallway. In the end our students/children learn an important lesson: KEEP SINGING EVEN WHEN THE PRESSURES ON! What a life lesson that isn’t found in textbooks.