Saturday, May 3, 2014
Big Apple Teacher Awards
It's an accumulation of days.
It's showing up.
It's the daily opportunity to facilitate the building of knowledge through exploration and perseverance.
It's the joyful interaction and exchange of ideas with students when the class is engaged in meaningful learning. The moments when I think there is no where else on earth I would rather be and nothing else I would rather be doing. Those times are amazing.
The other side of that is dealing with the administrative duties and excessive paperwork that takes us away from the students. All of the measures created to hold us "accountable" because otherwise we'd be doing...whatever it is untrusting, micromanaging administrators imagine.
Teachers quietly revel in the magical moments and patiently endure the bureaucratic hammering.
But sometimes our leaders see fit to give a little pat on the back for a job well done. The New York City Department of Education created the Big Apple Awards last year to recognize teacher excellence. This year I was nominated along with over 3,200 teachers for this honor. I have no idea who nominated me but whoever it was must have written a fantastic recommendation letter because I was selected to apply for the award (along with 500 other educators).
The application required a written response to four questions and two letters of recommendation (from a co worker and an administrator).
That went well and I was selected as a semi-finalist. The 100 semi-finalists had to appear for a 25-minute interview. I had my interview on Monday. I think it went well but these things are so subjective.
As a researcher, my inner voice kept commenting on the conduct of my interviewers. I wondered what training they were given for this and if there were key words/phrases they were looking for. Who knows? I felt that I was passionate, confident and articulate.
I would love to be selected because the award recipients serve as education ambassadors. Lord knows, I have a lot to say.
But, as the woman sitting next to me waiting to be interviewed stated, "It is an honor to be recognized whether it ends here or not".
It is indeed!