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Science Education Program Developer, Sci-Q Systems

Taking the word "climate"

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Taking the word "climate" more literally, some things that can be done to improve the classroom environment are to make sure there is sufficient oxygen in the room (hypoxia dulls brains), reduce interruptions from unexpected visitors, phone calls, and public address systems, and make sure kids have eaten (glucose energizes those neurons).

I think this is a great

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I think this is a great article. I agree that especially this time of year we are all so focused on testing and end of the year, we need to remember our successes. It's easy to get caught up in the chaos. Thanks for the reminders!

Shane, I would have to

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Shane,

I would have to disagree with your comment regarding soliciting compliments. Our physicians send out a comment survey following every office visit. They want to know what they did well and what they need to improve upon. I do believe they want to know how they were able to help our family.

Author, speaker, educator

Glad the article provided you

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Glad the article provided you with ideas and inspiration. I'd love to know how your actions are making an impact at your school and in your attitude. Keep me posted.

I love this article! I

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I love this article! I believe that the suggesstions are practical and definitely encourage educators to reflect on their teaching practices, actions, beliefs, and interactions. As an educator, I sometimes get frustrated because I feel underappreciated by my administration. Since my focus is on what I am not getting from them, I miss the the "smooth-sailing events." Your article has inspired me to set up a "troubles free" zone at my school. The teacher table in the cafeteria is normally the place where teachers gripe and complain about students, parents, administrators,and new initatives. I intend to anonymously place a sign in the middle of the table outlining the "rules" of the troubles free zone. Hopefully, as the end of the year approaches and frustration increases, the lunch table will now be a place of encouragement, praise, and appreciation that will remind teachers to try to find the best in unpleasant situations.

Author, speaker, educator

Shane - I appreciate your

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Shane - I appreciate your thoughtful comments and they remind me that not every strategy suits everyone. I see no down side to seeking appreciations. Unlike doctors and lawyers, teachers spend every day in a repetitive way for long periods of time with the same kids and their parents. In such a circumstance, there are so many wonderful things that most teachers do that go unnoticed and in my view seeking occasional feedback is a good thing. Further, I don't agree with your comment that creating a troubles free zone would further alienate a teacher in a toxic environment. Doesn't someone need to encourage a more nurturing place? Is it possible that any school would have nobody else who might support this and join in? In the many schools to which I have consulted, I have found there to always be at least some staff that are seeking and appreciate efforts to make their school a more caring place.

High school English teacher in Texas

Reality and Professionalism

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Some nice ideas here, but some definite problems with #'s 1 & 2. It seems tough to be seen as a respected professional and solicit compliments from parents and students. I don't think doctors and lawyers follow up asking for us to tell them all the ways they helped us out. Usually it's more about anything else they can do for us.

3, 4, & 5 are great institutional ideas administrators can turn to to improve the environment; however, if the environment is toxic, 6 is more likely to alienate a teacher further.

Overall, the ideas seem a little disconnected from reality.

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