Compare and Contrast Initial and Final CSTP
I could have never fathomed the challenges that I would face this year. When I created my Initial CSTP, I was finishing my dream year. I rated myself "integrating" or "innovating" on all the CSTP's. I had twenty students, no severe behavioral issues, and a good amount parent support. Because of this and my success last year, I rated myself very high on the CSTP's. This year was an entirely different story. I have twenty-nine students, five severe behavioral issues, and no parent support. On top of that, I fractured my knee at work, spent sixty days on modified duty, and twenty days of off duty.
All of these conditions created a very challenging year. If I had completed my CSTP's in February when I returned from my injury, I would have marked myself very as "exploring" or "emerging" on several of the CSTP's. Class management was almost non-existent, they were all academically very low especially in the area of writing, and I became instantly overwhelmed with how to gain control and bring my students academic levels up to standards.
Area of Strength
My areas of strength are "Creating and Maintaining Effective Environments" and "Assessing Students for Learning". I thought this during my Initial CSTP, and it prevailed to be true this year. I was very surprised that I was able to return to the conditions I did, assess all the students in a reasonable amount of time, implement new classroom behavior modifications, as well as individual behavioral modifications.
Opportunity for Continuous Improvement
My opportunities for continuous improvement are "Engaging and Supporting All Students in Learning" and "Planning Instruction and Designing Learning Experiences for All Students". I think engaging "all" students is always a challenge and because we are implementing a new language arts program, planning instruction and designing learning will be new and unfamiliar.
A professional goal that I have beyond induction is to continue finding ways to support all students and plan instruction to the standards. I have already started prepping some changes for next year and I have implemented a few of them this year. More small group tasks to allow for differentiation and whole group activities to allow time for one to one assessments.
I want to connect more with my team. This year we have united to planning specific units with the new program. This means we will be all teaching the same materials and by working together, we will essentially work less.
In order to sustain energy and maintain a passion for teaching, it is important to find balance. For me, this is about enjoying life outside of the classroom, so that I can enjoy life within my classroom. Taking time for myself and my family is crucial to finding that balance.
Quote from Reflective Coach
Crystal is a committed and dedicated professional who has become a leader at her school site. Perseverance has been a integral component of this past year for Crystal. Despite the challenges that she encountered, Crystal remained steadfast, maintaining her purpose in spite of the obstacles before her. As a result, she has been able to prioritize her responsibilities. With Crystal's Induction Program coming to an end, I celebrate all her hard work and accomplishments. I know she will continue to evolve and grow in her career as an educator.
Advice for New Teachers
My advice for new teachers would be to try to maintain balance from the beginning, even though this seems to be an impossible task. Be prepared to make mistakes and do not sweat the small stuff. Be prepared for the unexpected and be ready to throw your plans out the window when things don't work out. Also, do not spend to much money right up front. Do some research, use our wonderful graphics department to make as much as you can, and hold off on spending too much, until you see what works.