Day 34: What Do Groundhog Day, Teaching, and Starting Over Again Have in Common?


Open the window and take a deep breath; today is a brand new day!

Teaching is the most wonderful occupation in the world.  Every day I get to start all over again!  I can try a new idea, give a great big smile to each of my students, and write a new date on the whiteboard.  All of these symbolize the enthusiasm I embrace for starting over.

A couple of days ago was Groundhog Day.  In my home state the groundhog saw his shadow, meaning that there will be six more weeks of cold weather.  I guess it’s all in the outlook.  Every year it makes me think of the movie, Groundhog Day, and how it gave us an idea that we could do a whole day over and over again and try to get that one day right.  Starting over really excites me.

I love to start over because fresh ideas motivate me. I haven’t yet learned to weld, but it is still on my list of things to learn.  I love to go to a conference, take a class, or read a book that helps me learn to do something new.  There aren’t many things I won’t try given the right motivation and assuming that sports are not involved.    Some people believe that you should just do it right the first time, but most of those people don’t try many things.

I love to start over because I get to fix the mistakes I made last time. A funny thing about the movie, Groundhog Day, is that the actor tries to fix all the mistakes that are going on all around him.  Since he can relive his day again and again, he gets a chance to help people who are about to have accidents.  I used to teach middle school.  I would teach the same lesson four times. Each time it would be a little better than the time before, until the last time when I got bored with the lesson.

I love to start over because I want to see if I can inspire someone else to learn. My students are, in a way, my guinea pigs (groundhogs).  They get to try out the new things I learn, and I get to see what really motivates them.  Each school break, I spend a lot of time planning for something I believe will help students learn and enjoy. Trying something new excites me, and I love it when it activates student learning too.

A few days ago, USA Today put out an article about starting over. It’s worth the read and talks about Groundhog Day as well. Today’s creative activity is to consider today a day to start completely over.  I will imagine that I can do it all correctly.  What steps will I take to get started right, and how will that look in reality?  How about you? Which day would you want to do over again?  How would you do it differently?

“Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.” Maria Robinson



2 responses »

  1. Great ideas. I LOVE learning new things, a clean slate, and fresh starts with no expectations. I have great enthusiasm at such times.

    If given the chance to have a redo I am afraid that I would probably make some other mistake. 🙂

    The thing I want to remember is that I truly do have a clean slate each morning and it is me who drags me down into despair, etc.

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