Confidence in the Classroom

Confidence in the Classroom

Letting them know you're the boss.
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As I reflect on my experience so far with student teaching, one thing that has thrown me for a loop was my confidence in front of my students in the classroom. Coming from a family of teachers, I always assumed that I would be a natural at it, an absolute rockstar. My first day in the room I was thrust in front of the kids with absolutely no idea what to do. I totally blanked. The lesson turned out to be a complete disaster.

Once I realized that my issue was regarding content, I put some steps into place to help me with my confidence. My cooperating teacher was also paramount in me getting over my fear of failure. He urged me to remember that I was college educated, and that due to my age I had advanced knowledge on the world, especially when it came to Social Studies. He said just remember that you always know more than the kids. He also said if I ever needed help, he would be there to help me; be it clarification or an issue with classroom management.

As time has passed, I have become more and more confident every day. My cooperating teacher seems to feel that my confidence level changes depending on how comfortable I am with the material. The more and more I brush up on the curriculum, the more confident I become. I constantly find myself looking at the History Channel website, Wikipedia, and other websites made by different educators across the country. It allows me to come up with interesting facts about the subjects my students are studying, especially things that aren’t technically in the curriculum. For example, even though we briefly talk about Renaissance Art and have a lesson on the Scientific Revolution, I always mention the anecdote about the house arrest and punishment of Galileo for his heliocentric theory that was banned by the Catholic Church.

My supervisor has also noted a huge increase in my confidence. From the first observation to the second, she said my confidence has gone through the roof. She said I was totally in control of my classroom, and that I actually look like a teacher. She said that the kids seem to respect me and that their total demeanor towards me has changed. I absolutely agree, and I feel that it will also get better the more and more I teach.
Cover Image Credit: Blogspot

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To The Girl Struggling With Her Body Image

It's not about the size of your jeans, but the size of your heart, soul, and spirit.

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To the girl struggling with her body image,

You are more than the number on the scale. You are more than the number on your jeans and dresses. You are way more than the number of pounds you've gained or lost in whatever amount of time.

Weight is defined as the quantity of matter contained by a body or object. Weight does not define your self-worth, ambition or potential.

So many girls strive for validation through the various numbers associated with body image and it's really so sad seeing such beautiful, incredible women become discouraged over a few numbers that don't measure anything of true significance.

Yes, it is important to live a healthy lifestyle. Yes, it is important to take care of yourself. However, taking care of yourself includes your mental health as well. Neglecting either your mental or physical health will inflict problems on the other. It's very easy to get caught up in the idea that you're too heavy or too thin, which results in you possibly mistreating your body in some way.

Your body is your special, beautiful temple. It harbors all of your thoughts, feelings, characteristics, and ideas. Without it, you wouldn't be you. If you so wish to change it in a healthy way, then, by all means, go ahead. With that being said, don't make changes to impress or please someone else. You are the only person who is in charge of your body. No one else has the right to tell you whether or not your body is good enough. If you don't satisfy their standards, then you don't need that sort of negative influence in your life. That sort of manipulation and control is extremely unhealthy in its own regard.

Do not hold back on things you love or want to do because of how you interpret your body. You are enough. You are more than enough. You are more than your exterior. You are your inner being, your spirit. A smile and confidence are the most beautiful things you can wear.

It's not about the size of your jeans. It's about the size of your mind and heart. Embrace your body, observe and adore every curve, bone and stretch mark. Wear what makes you feel happy and comfortable in your own skin. Do your hair and makeup (or don't do either) to your heart's desire. Wear the crop top you've been eyeing up in that store window. Want a bikini body? Put a bikini on your body, simple.

So, as hard as it may seem sometimes, understand that the number on the scale doesn't measure the amount or significance of your contributions to this world. Just because that dress doesn't fit you like you had hoped doesn't mean that you're any less of a person.

Love your body, and your body will love you right back.

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Margliotti

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Don't Be Afraid of Changing Your College Plan

It really isn't THAT bad...

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I can't claim to have any deep wisdom on life, but I at least have some good experience with a highly turbulent college career. I started as a game design major in a tech college in Rochester, NY, transferred to a college in Texas, and now I'm an English major at CofC.

My college life has been something of a roller coaster.

But I regret none of it. Maybe it would have been easier to stick to the track I was on initially, but I would never have been fully satisfied with it. Now I've finally found my place and, even though it may have taken a lot of shifting around, it was undoubtedly worthwhile.

I don't mean to say that everyone who is slightly dissatisfied with their major should transfer all over the country and change their major(I had to sacrifice the ability to get a minor because of the path I took, so I wouldn't recommend it to most people). I just believe that if you find yourself not liking the classes that are vital to your major or if you can't find a place at your current college, then changing your major or transferring isn't as horrible as you might imagine.

When I started college I was completely confident in what I wanted to do and what my future would look like. I thought it would be ridiculous for someone to stray from their initial path. That idea led to me deciding to transfer later than was smart.

I think everyone should know that having to change your plans for the future, sometimes in dramatic ways, isn't a bad thing. No matter how scary transferring and changing majors can seem, many people have done it before you and many will after, you aren't alone.

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