Friday, July 12, 2013

Passion Starts With The Eyes: Don't Lose Your Students!

Deep in thought in the mind of a child

This morning it dawned on me that passion emits from us directly from our eyes. This is the essential signal sender that tells people in a split second whether you are passionate and alive. Before you even speak people can tell whether you are 100% genuine or not. It happens so fast. You can completely lose your audience or have them captivated before you do even begin to teach your lesson or interact with others.

It starts with your eyes. Don't believe me? Look into the eyes of a 2 year old or really any child and try to disagree! They will burn a hole into you with their passion for life. This passion can be excitement or the temper tantrum that they throw, but regardless their passion for what they are doing shines through their eyes.

My daughter woke up early this morning and I put her in bed with me to see if she would fall asleep. As we laid there looking at each other I could just feel her burning desire for life. Her eyes were intense with a passion for life and exploration.

It made me think about myself - Do my eyes emit the same passion as I looked back at her? Or do I need time to warm up, drink coffee, and get ready? Even more important, what message do I send with my eyes when I am in my classroom? Am I groggy? Am I sending the wrong signals? Or am I just bursting with passion? The more I think about it the more I realize that my body signals and passion in my eyes really determines the lesson at hand whether in the classroom or with my own children. Students will know right away before the bell rings or soon thereafter how good of a lesson the day will be before you even start. They will know whether the class will suck or not and will make that determination in a split second. You might have a great lesson planned, but if you don't show it as you enter the room or while standing outside the room, the lesson is over.

Before you step out the door perhaps you should look in the mirror and do a Passion Double Check to be sure you are ready to start your day! As students enter your building you better be ready. Don't sell yourself short because you are not bringing your A game.

With passion you can begin to persuade those students who are on the fence about school to slowly change their thinking. Don't let one moment ruin the joy of learning and the power of your classroom.

What are some techniques or tricks you use to make sure you are ready when the kids enter the class?

Now if only I could wake up and instantly be ready to go like my two year old I would be set! Thank goodness for my coffee.
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