Educators Corner: It Was Hard to See the Good in 2021 — Until I Started Practicing Gratitude
[Source: Ed Surge]
Between school closures, learning loss, intensified educator burnout, widespread staff shortages and increased stressors at home, it’s been hard not to focus on the negatives in education this year. In fact, it’s human nature to get caught up in what went wrong—an innate survival mechanism called “negativity bias” vigilantly draws our attention to worries and risks so we can better remember and avoid threats.
While I’m appreciative that my ancestors were wary folks, in 2021, I often saw myself and others trapped in this negative mindset, always tallying the losses and waiting for the next bad thing to happen.
However, in my work with educators this year, I began to notice that some were able to metabolize this negativity and keep themselves and their classrooms positive and adaptive despite the obvious hindrances. Interviews with elementary classroom teachers spanning a variety of settings and grade levels revealed that these resilient educators utilized a common strategy: they practiced gratitude in their everyday lives.
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