Re: Perfectionistic teacher
    Posted by: lynne on 10/24/15
    () Comments

    On 10/21/15, newbie wrote:
    > I'm a new administrator and I have a teacher on staff who
    > is fabulous, top-notch. However, she's very hard on
    > herself. She has very high expectations of herself and is
    > very critical of her teaching when she reflects. As her
    > administrator, I have seen nothing but highly effective
    > teaching from her. How would you support a teacher like
    > this/help her improve in this area? I wouldn't even
    > consider it low confidence because she does have such a
    > go-getting, growth mindset. It's just truly that she's
    > critical of herself, always pushing for her to be better.

    To be honest, I don't see much of anything wrong in what
    you've described.
    Positives about the teacher:
    -fabulous, top-notch.
    -very high expectations of herself
    -nothing but highly effective teach
    -she's very critical of her teaching when she reflects*
    -does not have low confidence
    -go-getting, growth mindset
    -always pushing herself to be better

    The only part that could potentitally be perceived as
    negative is:
    -*she's very hard on herself/critical of herself

    And since you say that she does not have low confidence,
    I'm not even sure that this is necessarily a negative. A
    person can be critical of herself and use that grow, or can
    be critical of herself and have it drag down her confidence
    and self-image (i.e. "I can't do anything right..."). If it
    is the former, this is probably just her personality and
    it's really not a bad thing. If it's the latter, i.e. it's
    causing her to become depressed and feel that she's a "bad
    teacher", that's different. Reflect on which it is... is it
    really just a growth mindset, an "I can do better" that
    keeps pushing her to improve? Or is it more of an "I'm a
    bad teacher" mindset?
    I definitely would not discourage her self-reflection or
    her desire for continuous improvement or her high
    expectations and growth mindset. These are all very good
    and are probably among the factors that maker her a good
    teacher. Perhaps you could begin by praising that! And when
    you see good things happening in her classroom, acknowledge
    them. That may be all you need to do. Trying to convince
    her that things she criticizes are "good enough" is
    unlikely to be effective (she'll just feel that you're
    settling for mediocre and/or don't have high expectations
    of her or her students), etc. It sounds like she's a very
    driven and growth-oriented teacher and that should be
    encouraged and praised. I'm sure she'll be encouraged to
    hear that you see good things going on in her classroom,
    even if at the same she sees ways that should could have
    made it even better. Because she's thinking of those "ways
    to make it even better" she probably WILL do even better
    next time - next lesson or next school year - etc. - she
    realizes that even someone who is doing well can find ways
    to improve. (That's a good thing for her students to see,
    too! She's probably a great role model.)

    Posts on this thread, including this one

  • Perfectionistic teacher, 10/21/15, by newbie.
  • Re: Perfectionistic teacher, 10/24/15, by lynne.