32 before 32 – Lesson 4: Reflection

“How could I have done that better?” is a question I constantly find myself asking whenever I am at the end of the day. To evolve as a human, there has to be a certain level of reflection practice incorporated into your daily routine. For today’s life lesson, I want to implore upon you the importance of being a person who makes a habit of looking to improve.

As a teacher, I reflect often on my best practices to better serve my students. One of my favorite reflection stores is from back in February of this year. My seventh graders were struggling with a lesson on the distributive property. In order to experience any type of relative success in math in 8th grade, I needed to make sure the students knew how to do distributive property. By the end of the lesson, there were a number of confused looks and frustrated faces on my 7th graders. After school, I sat and thought in my classroom “I need them to get this, but how?” Knowing my 7th graders, a class full of artists and kids who need concrete examples I came up with an art activity that would perfectly marry my need for them to get the concept and their ability excel using visual art. The result? 75% retention of the concept and one math class that now had some pretty neat art to display learning of the students.

Being a reflective person helps not only yourself but those who you interact with on a daily basis. Reflection is not only a practice that should happen when you do something poorly, but when something goes well and you want to replicate the success next time. I hope you strive for that daily personal evolution no matter how small of a reflection that may be.

One of my seventh graders’ visual display of the distributive property

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