Last week I was rushing to get to one of my classes, after not being able to get away from one of those hallway conversations with a fellow teacher. I made it down the four flights of stairs and as I walked into the room panting, the students — looking at the clock — hollered “just 5 more seconds Mr. Shah… if you came in just 5 seconds later you would have been late!” Indeed, they were right.
This moment struck me deeply.
Why? This is the moment that tells me I’ve succeeded. I have clear expectations with my students regarding certain things, including being on time to class. And I make damned well sure that if I give myself permission to call out those who come in late, I’m going to be in the classroom every day on time.
I like that they’ve internalized it. This moment could never have happened otherwise.