H3 – Honor the classroom/school community as a milieu for learning. It is important that all people involved in the education of students see that the school is an environment of learning. If any parties do not take view the classroom as a sacred place of learning, it will hold back the educational process. If teachers do not view it as such, then they might have some misconceptions about their career. If students do not view it as such, then they will not approach the classroom to learn, thus making a teacher’s job difficult to say the least. Finally, if parents do not respect the classroom as a learning environment, they might see the school as nothing more than a tax-sponsored babysitting program.
During Curriculum Night, my mentor teacher made sure to emphasize the importance of being in school every day possible. The handed out the sheet shown in Image 1 as part of the night’s paperwork. Under the daily schedule, she reminded families of the importance of each day in the classroom.
It is unfortunate that some parents bring their kids back from a long absence, see that there was little homework, and then comment that they’re happy their child “didn’t miss anything important.” It is this mentality that needs to be stopped. In education, we already have so few days with our students. Each day is important. Each hour. Each 15-minute segment. Any mini-lesson might be the one that finally gives the students that “a-ha” moment they needed in order to no longer struggle with certain content. If they are pulled out of school early for a vacation or to get to a concert early, they might miss that key piece that they need. In my own classroom one day, I will be sure to emphasize the importance of each moment spent in the classroom and hopefully make an impact on the families’ views on the classroom as a place of learning.