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TEACH to the HEART Cover Page

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            Higher education has not provided all teachers with the necessary education needed to deal with the diverse problems confronting them in regular classrooms.   Although young people are 25% of our population and 100% of our future, education often allows children to exit the back door of failure.  Hopefully, my experiences and teaching ideas in this book will help other teachers reach the challenging students in their classroom.

            After teaching all areas of special education, I found my teaching style was the same whether for gifted, mentally challenged, learning disabled, behaviorally challenged, and hearing impaired, or “regular” students.  Communication skills, oral, listening, and written, proved to be most important, along with social skills.  Reading opened the world to children and developed as a result of speaking and writing.

            The curriculum in every classroom can uniquely provide students with outstanding learning experiences.  Every student is precious and deserves an excellent education.  All can be creative when teachers facilitate their development.  All are gifted in some area, whether it be math, creative writing, art, reading, science, or social studies.   Tailoring the curriculum means that teachers must adjust ways of teaching methods in response to students’ signals or learning styles.   Teachers need to reach each child’s heart to find the key to develop the child’s love for learning.

            Valuing and accepting each student is KEY! Each child is different but all have the same needs—to be accepted and loved. They are like flowers; needing to be nurtured, so that they might bloom.  As they adapt to the diversity in their classrooms, teachers learn from their students. Incorporating a student’s view of the world inevitably empowers that child’s vision.

            We celebrate achievements during our lifetime and children should celebrate their accomplishments as well.  The best way to do this is to create an environment where students are rewarded and valued by society.  

            Impart positive messages about their “good behavior”, acknowledging their value.  There are three kinds of students: those who fear failure, those who anticipate success, and those who learn not to care about learning. Through writing, children can learn who they are and focus on goals they want to reach.  When children learn they can succeed, they will be well behaved and become like sponges, eager to soak up knowledge.  Teachers are capable of turning a negative attitude toward learning into a positive one.  Giving teachers the feeling of connection and bravery and, “I want to do that!” is a gift that hundreds or thousands of students passed on to me   that I now pass on to you, the reader and teacher.

             Throughout this book, you will experience many examples of teaching to the heart, and read about students I taught who also taught me. I believe sincerely that teachers make the greatest difference in every child’s life even as they determine whether each child will succeed and become a lifelong learner. My love for teaching was the most important qualification I possessed to provide success for each life I touched. Hopefully, it will be the same for you. It is the best decision possible for your class.

On 8/18/2014,

Dr. Dale Despain wrote:

Roberta, I just spent a couple of hours reviewing your book!  It reads just like you are sitting down with a friend and giving them many suggestions and helps on how to be a more effective teacher!   No  matter how experienced or inexperienced a teacher is the book gives ideas that will be helpful.  As an administrator, I would find it helpful as a resource to guide teachers for improvement.

The education community is fortunate to have your wisdom and creativity in writing!  

Congratulations, Dale

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I've already read Teach to the Heart cover-to-cover. It was a great read with very practical ideas that I can use. Thanks so much for sending it, Aunt Catherine!  Many times educational theory is just that.… Theory and boring. This book was different.  I loved it!  Very inspiring.   

 Lisa from Missouri

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I did get to read your book and it was such fun to feel like we sat down together again.   It projected your passion for teaching and loving students – at whatever point they are at.   You are indeed a master teacher.           Hugs, Bonny