In this activity, you will answer a series of questions to support your authentic introduction to students. When thinking about how to frame your introduction, consider if this activity is part of your initial relationship building or if you are reintroducing yourself as part of a classroom culture reset.
New Class vs. Intervention
New Class: If this is a new cohort of students you are meeting for the first time, your introduction is a great way to connect with students and also model selective sharing/vulnerability.
Intervention: If you are implementing the student name story or community guidelines lesson, they require introspection and ask the students to reflect on their identity, which can be a vulnerable experience. One way to create a safe space is to model sharing without crossing your own boundaries / or feeling pressured to divulge information you don’t wish to.
Teacher (Re)Introduction Activity
Teacher Directions: Choose any questions you want to share, and feel free to add your own! Think about how you can connect with your students and explore your connection to learning.
Teacher Notes: (Re)Introductions are a great way to continually reflect on how your academic environment was similar to/different from the one you teach in now. How did that shape the norms of your classroom? In what ways might you be expecting students to model similar norms as you did, even if you recognize the environment is different?
Questions to Consider Answering:
- What is your migration story? How did you and/or your family arrive in your community
- What you studied, why, and how it appears in your daily life
- What was the moment you fell in love with learning
- Something you struggled with academically as a student and how you approached/are approaching this challenge
- Something that continues to excite/drive you (could be personal interest, something about the class you are teaching)
- “Challenging Days”- What you do when you have one, what might cause them for you, how might your behavior or demeanor shift, name how that might impact the classroom, how you give yourself grace, how you will show others grace, and how you and students can hold each other accountable to maintain a supportive classrooms environment when they need grace
- One goal you have for the year: you can ask students how they can partner with you to achieve it!
The New Year Teacher Toolkit is a resource for teachers looking to build intentional school culture and classroom routines with their students as partners.