Anne Weidert is a “Teacher with Habitudes.” Anne Weidert is a third grade teacher at Woodward Academy’s Primary School. She teaches a self contained class of children who have special needs. She feels that the classroom habitudes empower her students to be more confident and passionate learners. She is excited to be a teacher of the Habitudes.
My goal is to let my third grade students know that they matter. Not only do I blatantly tell them “You matter,” I make sure they understand that they are important to the world and to the work that we do every day in our classroom. When someone it absent, it matters! We miss their important contribution to our learning. We talk about how important being here and working hard every day is to become a passionate amazing learner and citizen of the world.
We also focus on one of the first things Angela talks about in Habitudes that success in the 21st century requires. “Understand your strengths and the discipline needed to improve your weaknesses.” In my class that is made up of eight third graders, all of whom have special needs, we hear “I already knew that” and “I did that last year” when it is clear that they have not learned the concept and need much more work in the area. We talk about how every one of them has strengths and are very good at many things. However, we also need to recognize there are things we DON’T know and that those will take hard work and determination to master. We talk a lot about the fact that everyone has weaknesses they are working on. To improve them it takes discipline and focus.
Since we had been more generally talking about Angela’s ideas and not specifically concentrating on the Habitudes, I decided that we should do a lesson where we talked about the meaning of each of the Habitudes. I quickly found that my third graders did not know the definition of any of the words! The lesson I had planned to improve knowledge of the Habitudes ended up being a vocabulary exercise as well! We worked through what each one meant, we looked at the posters I found on her website and read definitions from the Habitudes book. Then, each child made a poster for one of the Habitudes with a picture that somehow related to that Habitude. Some are more loosely related that others but I think my students generally understood the idea behind the Habitude they chose. I am looking forward to many more Habitudes lessons and focusing on each of the geniuses in my class.