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Feeling inadequate compared to...
Old 11-03-2018, 07:12 PM
 
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I teach 5th grade with five other teachers. Two of them I consider fantastic educators - innovative, rigorous, and wonderfully creative. My classroom walls look sad compared to theirs.



The trouble is that I carpool with one of those teachers, and our ride to work is 45+ minutes long. She shares all the great new things she is doing with her class. She shares with me if I want, but I'm always one step behind her.



I've already unfollowed the awesome Instagram teachers with their own blogs. Their fancy student work boards and calligraphied anchor charts were just making me feel too badly.


I shared my feelings with the special ed teacher over a drink yesterday. She tried telling me I'm just as good as the two teachers I work with, but I still feel inadequate.


Anyone else deal with lesson plan/classroom decor envy?


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Old 11-03-2018, 07:16 PM
 
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I was really struggling with that with one of my team mates. What I finally realized is that we all have our own strengths and weaknesses. There are things I do really well that she doesnít do so well. Find your own strengths and revel in them.
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Old 11-03-2018, 07:21 PM
 
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Socalteach
I think itís only human to do that and we do it in our own life.
Iím retired now but when I was teaching I would do that too and those teachers would make me feel inadequate even if I thought my room was super cute
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Old 11-03-2018, 09:17 PM
 
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Comparison is the thief of joy.
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jealous for the right reason
Old 11-04-2018, 06:21 AM
 
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I'd be jealous if we have the same composition in class but somehow, this teacher's class is performing better. I will obviously celebrate this staff's accomplishment because of their magic bullet.

I cope by keeping my notes of appreciation I might get from parents, students, or admin. This might sound strange but I appreciate these more than receiving a "teacher of the period" award from somewhere's. When I was younger though I wouldn't had thought of it this way. Just be youself.


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Old 11-04-2018, 06:44 AM
 
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The core of what you are feeling is that you do not feel ok about what you do because someone else is doing something different. Do you feel confident about yourself in other areas if your life?
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Old 11-04-2018, 07:51 AM
 
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What do you remember about your favorite teacher as a kid? Fancy walls? Student work posted?

Fancy walls do not make one a great teacher. Iím sure you know that. Care about the kids; teach them compassion as well as the academic content. The rest is fluff. I have a feeling that you are a really good teacher!
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Old 11-04-2018, 07:58 AM
 
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I do not feel confident in other areas of my life. I am reserved; I don't take initiative; and I'm shy around adults. I never thought really hard about this.



I use humor a lot with my class. I think the kids like this about me.



One of the teachers I envy is a workaholic. She comes in to work every Saturday to make copies and to make weekly behavior charts. Sorry, not going to do that one.
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Old 11-04-2018, 08:02 AM
 
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I love this saying. I thought you might like it too.
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OMGoodness! I value humor 1 million
Old 11-04-2018, 09:38 AM
 
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times more than bulletin boards, doors, and decorations. If you came here and looked at mine, I am sure you'd feel like the most fantastic decorator ever.
I never was the "most flashy decorator, but I truly did my best when in a school that valued how everything looked pretty highly.
I just happened into a school where for some reason, very little value is placed there. ( You just gave me something to be thankful for- 1 way there is less work....many other ways are the opposite though.
The kids decorate for me with their work. I think it is pretty. It might even be the best in the school.... not saying much , but I do know what it is like to be in a school where it is valued.
There will always be someone better and worse at everything in life. Try not to compare yourself to others. In my old well decorated school, I used to get a kick helping an OCD ( I loved her though) BB paper hanger. I'd say: Down a little on the right, up a little, over..etc until she'd start laughing cus she figured out I was just playing w/ her. The kids will remember your humor long after the memory of decorations is gone.


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Old 11-04-2018, 10:04 AM
 
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Quote:
One of the teachers I envy is a workaholic. She comes in to work every Saturday to make copies and to make weekly behavior charts. Sorry, not going to do that one.
Sooo..do you really envy her?
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My former principal
Old 11-04-2018, 11:39 AM
 
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My former principal preferred our anchor charts be made by the students. She also believed less is more when it comes to stuff in the room. She felt all of that stuff can be very distracting to students. I agree with her and will continue to keep things simple and child created.
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Old 11-04-2018, 12:22 PM
 
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Quote:
Sooo..do you really envy her?
This was my thought as well. I have a workaholic teammate. She gets a lot of accolades from the admin and the rest of the staff (outside of my team, because we know she's nuts). Sometimes I find myself feeling a little jealous or inadequate in comparison.

Then I remind myself that I am just flat out not willing to do what she does. She works an insane amount of hours. At one point, her DH was getting so upset about it that he started timing them, and she was up to 19 extra hours worked for the week on Tuesday morning. She's also completely miserable and hates teaching. So when I put it in that perspective, no, I don't envy her at all.

I also like the suggestion above to think about things that you're good at. We all have our own strengths. Decorating is certainly not mine, but I've gotten numerous compliments about the way I run IEP meetings. It helps to focus on the good things!
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Old 11-04-2018, 01:27 PM
 
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There are some super pintrest-y teachers at my school. I was also feeling like I need to do more decorating to keep up with them but with my limited budget and 3 jobs and being a single mom I just haven't gotten there and was feeling a bit down about this.

Then the new fire marshal came for a surprise inspection-the pintrest classes were all out of compliance those teachers had a week to get their rooms in compliance with fire codes which meant that they had to stay late just to make their rooms look like mine.

Moral of the story is-more isn't always better. Sometimes more is just more trouble.

Do well with your lessons, help all your kids make growth, form great bonds with your students built on mutual respect and worry less about if other seem more creative. Good can infact be good enough
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Old 11-04-2018, 02:36 PM
 
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Thank you all for your replies!!
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Old 11-04-2018, 03:25 PM
 
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I often feel the same way, especially since my current and previous admins highly prized pinterest-y classrooms. This year, I tried to put up my bulletin boards that were slightly more decorative than I usually do. This required some effort. I was so proud of myself because it was hard! A few of the Pinterest-y teachers came by and complimented me and I said I know it wasn't anything like their classrooms. And you know what? They offered their help. One has already made matchy labels for my book boxes. So now I'm just going to ask people for help.
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Walls
Old 11-05-2018, 07:00 PM
 
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I had a volunteer put up some of my boards in the hall. I kept the ones in the room subject related.
There are people that would like to help in this way. Put in in your newsletter and see if you get a response.
I personally like to decorate when I have my own room and teaching General ed. I do always keep in mind not to overdo it though.
Iíve been in rooms where every piece of wall is covered in something. I canít stay in them very long. It feels like the walls are closing in on me. Can you image your walls at home being that covered!
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Old 11-06-2018, 02:37 AM
 
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Everybody is different. Girl, you just need to do you!
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Old 11-07-2018, 06:11 PM
 
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I consider all the "pretty" stuff to be distracting. The inspirational posters, the "you are unique" flyers, anything using clip art, or anything using the Comic Sans typefont, they're all just clutter. Student eyes will fixate on anything in the classroom, and that should be things that are hard to remember.

The only thing I have on my walls are things that directly relate to the lesson, such as vocabulary, diagrams, or reference photos.

The only non-essential decoration I used were a couple of joke warning signs: "Do Not Inhale Fumes, No Matter How Good They Smell" (which actually got referred to when students used a hotwire to cut styrofoam) and "Exposed Singularites: Black Holes, Cosmic String, Distorted Space-Time"

Of course, teachers and admin complained that my room didn't look "kid-friendly" so I put up some butcher paper and stuck some student writing onto it.
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