and now I am in your class, and I am super cranky. Not simply because I got a sunburn, but because I had gym class before YOUR class and all the girls saw that I got burnt and were making fun of me. Now I am in pain and embarrassed, and have chosen your class to express my anger in. How will you keep your cool, and prevent my acting out? This is where your “Mental Set” will come in handy.
The Mental Set, for me, was more helpful in addressing teacher burnout. I can really relate to it mainly because I have student burnout, and the suggestions they gave are what I do all the time. I can rarely think back on occasions where I thought that my teachers were super stressed and it was affecting their lessons. One teacher I recall had been cheated on by her husband and was going through the divorce, and she let her classes know in advance that she was going through this. It sounds unprofessional, but in reality I thought it made the class feel important, like she trusted them with this piece of her life and they were going to respect that. Plus she was so cool, people always wondered who would cheat on her. For her, it must have been a bit of relief, because if she was having a rough day the class knew why.
The teachers who can keep a handle on their emotions and stress levels are easier to be around also. I have been in several classrooms where the aides were stressed and overwhelmed with certain students and they took it out on them. Those instances were some of the hardest ones that i have had to sit through and watch. I never want to be that teacher, and out of all the suggestions the book gives us I adopt humor as my weapon of choice. I love to watch the Cosby Show after a bad day, and my Dad and I like to watch Brian Regan youtube videos during lunch.
The “withitness” I understand and completely agree with, however the procedures do not really fit my image of myself as a teacher. I think that they were helpful in starting up thoughts about what I would actually do in those situations, though I am doubtful that I would go through them one by one. I enjoyed some of the research I read where it advised that teachers are with it in a more round sense, and go the extra mile to relate to their students culture
I thought this site was good because it talks about the mental set in not just terms of school: