Monday, September 21, 2015

The Imposter #SOL15

This week, I read Sandy Otto's blog post on sharing our failures. It was an excellent piece- check it out: http://ottogoingagainstthegrain.blogspot.com/2015/09/owning-my-teacher-failures.html  Sandy wrote that we often share all of the good on social media sites like Twitter and Facebook, but we don't share the flops, the failures, the lessons that went awry.  She courageously discussed what went wrong in her classroom that week and then what went right, too.  Thank you, Sandy, for starting this conversation!

I happen to be a mentor to a new colleague at work.  She just joined Twitter and after seeing my "followers" commented that I'm "famous." Now the pressure is on! We have to observe each other as part of our mentor program and I am already petrified that she will think I am the biggest fraud.  ("People follow HER? IF only they could see her in action!) 

I'm worried that since I started blogging about teaching and sharing my ideas, people might think that I consider myself some type of expert.  I really don't.  I am a teacher with a lot of questions about ways to improve my craft.  There are times where it all goes wrong.  I like to share my ideas but it doesn't always mean they are easy to implement or go the way I think they will in my imagination.  Teaching is a very human job with actual, real live unpredictable children in front of you.  Lesson to lesson may vary in its' effectiveness on any given day.  

So, here's a confession: I think I have Imposter Syndrome. I feel like people will eventually discover that I really am not as good as I sound in the posts I write.  The truth- The Parent's Guide to Writing Workshop that I created for a #TWTblog post? I ran out of time to share it at my own Open School Night. The territory maps I couldn't wait to try with my third graders? I shelved it for now because I wanted to give them more writing time.  I'm thinking of trying it when their ideas for topics starts to wane, but I feel guilty that I didn't do what I said, publicly, I would do.  

I found this article on Imposter Syndrome: http://www.forbes.com/sites/margiewarrell/2014/04/03/impostor-syndrome/.  There is a line that says, "But giving your best is not the same as being the best." I like that.  I really do give my best but I know I am not the best. I know there is still a lot for me to learn and figure out.  It's to my credit that I care to find the solutions- I read tweets and blogs, I participate in book clubs and online discussion communities, I share ideas with friends via Voxer, and I write about my own experiences here and at Two Writing Teachers.  I want to be an excellent teacher.  But if I make it seem like I already am one by my posts, please forgive me.  I am thoroughly a work in progress.