My Definition Of Success | Success means bringing about change and accomplishing something that makes a difference. Success also means to me as a teacher having 100% participation from all my students. It means reaching everyone I teach and seeing change happen – people growing and learning.
I Am Driven By | The urgency of the marine debris problem. The need to take action due to the harm that plastic marine debris is causing to the food chain, marine life, sea birds and the ocean/coastal environment.
I Am Driven By My Love For Dance | Wanting to share that passion with others so they can experience the joy of dance. The need to bring peace to the world through dance education – getting people to understand themselves and others better and to appreciate other cultures. Breaking down cultural stereotypes and barriers through dance education.
My Highlights | The achievements of the award winning, non-profit organization that I co-founded – Beach Environmental Awareness Campaign Hawai`i (B.E.A.C.H.) which brings awareness and solutions to plastic marine debris through: environmental education in schools and the community; marine debris removal and research; and plastic reduction and litter prevention campaigns in order to protect marine life, sea birds and the ocean/coastal environment. B.E.A.C.H. takes action to prevent and reduce plastic marine debris and has inspired other organizations to take up the issue of marine debris and get involved. For information visit: www.b-e-a-c-h.org
Being the first qualified, trained dance educator in my state, pioneering dance education in my state, receiving the QEII Grant for Young Australians, being the top dance educator in my state, inservicing teachers statewide, being able to do 30 + different dance forms, achieving excellence in teaching and being recognized for excellence. Pioneering learning of academics through dance in my state and pioneering contact improvisation in my state. Doing dance projects with children that helped break down racial tension.
The Difference Between good And Great | Being great at what you do is doing something at an outstanding, higher level that can only be achieved by extra work, more time, more effort and more thought. It also means putting in the preparation time, paying attention to details and doing what’s needed to be done behind the scenes to not just get the job done, but getting it done to the best that it could be done.
People who a re good at what they do only go so far as is necessary to be good without taking the extra time and effort to be great. People who are great at what they do are always striving to be better, evaluating what was good and what could be improved and they work a lot harder than people who are just good at what they do. People who are great put a lot of time, effort and energy into doing the best they possibly can. They also work hard over a long period of time and they go the extra mile all the time – even when nobody is watching or nobody knows what they do.
The difference between good and great is that those who are great go beyond and achieve a level of excellence. To be excellent at teaching you need to keep learning yourself through professional development as well as being open to the learning that comes from your students. As a teacher you need to be able to think about how to teach better and evaluate your work every time – what worked, what could be better and continously strive for better. Even if it was good, a great teacher will want to do better and that’s how you become great – is not resting at being good, but wanting to be the best you can possibly be. A great teacher inspires their students to be the best they can be also. A good teacher would teach well but not inspire or bring about major change in their students. A great teacher is prepared to go with a “learning moment” when it arises and is able to respond in the moment to the students and the class dynamics. A great teacher connects with their students, not as a friend, but as a professional. A great teacher inspires even the most reluctant student to want to participate. A great teacher can work with anyone. They understand people and how they learn and have empathy and compassion.
A Key Strength | One strength I have that has been critical to my success is knowing how to teach people – knowing how to connect with them and inspire them to achieve more than they thought possible. Also the ability to teach anyone.
I started teaching at a young age, then went to study dance education where I selected schools and experiences that would really challenge and develop my teaching practise. I didn’t pick easy student teacher placements – I went into schools that helped develop my ability to teach anyone.
Characteristics/ Actions/ Habits/ Behaviours | That have helped me achieve what I have been able to achieve:
able to think out of the box
openess to new/other ideas
I strive for excellence in my own work, setting high standards and realistic expectations and expect excellence from my students and those I work with – high expectations means the students rise to meet those expectations
As a teacher I am open to the learning and possibilities that arise and can adjust plans as I go
I am proactive rather than reactive. I work to make things happen rather than waiting for it to happen
I take action and don’t just talk about what needs to be done
I think about what is needed to make things better or see something that needs doing and then I do it
I’m continually learning for my own professional development
I do what I say I’m going to do
I listen attentively to people and communicate clearly and effectively for maximum learning for my students
I demonstrate the willingness to stick at something until it’s done
I use positive affirmations, thinking about things in terms of the positive rather than the negative
Leading by example
I make to do lists
I double and triple check my work