Episode 25: The Power of Positive Phone Calls Home!

podcast Oct 26, 2022
phone calls home

Join me in this challenge! I can't wait to hear how it positively impacts you! 💜

Here's the blog on positive phone calls so you can read some scripts of how to keep them short and sweet!

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Welcome to Teaching la vida loca, a podcast for World Language Teachers seeking inspiration, unapologetic authenticity and guidance in centering joy and facilitating language acquisition for the people who matter most. Our students, I'm your host, Annabelle. Most people call me La maestra loca. And I'm an educator just like you, and inspiring teachers is what I do. 

Episode 25 

Hey, hey, welcome to episode 25 of teaching la vida loca. I am so happy you are here today because today I have a challenge for you. This isn't going to be a very long episode, it's going to be short and sweet, but it is going to be so impactful. If you join me in this challenge. I know this because this is something that I shared at FLAVA. A few weeks ago, I had the honor and privilege of being the keynote speaker for FLAVA's fall conference. This is Virginia's World Language organization. 

An Addition To My Teacher Tool Belt 

And one of the things that I shared in my keynote was some things that I gained in the last three to four years of teaching, that I will never ever remove from my teacher tool belt, because they have so positively impacted my practice. And this is one of them. It's so powerful. And it's such an easy thing to add. Because I know you're like, don't give me another thing to do. Our plates are already over full. And that's so true. But this is something that's so easy, and the impact will be profound. 

Positive Phone Calls Home 

What I'm sharing with you today is the power of positive phone calls home. Don't hang up, not that you're on the phone. But don't pause the episode or stop the episode, I want to tell you about the impact they'll have first and then I'll explain the challenge. Okay. The impact of positive phone calls home are, it's incredible. And notice I'm saying phone calls, I'm not saying text messages, I'm not saying emails, I'm saying positive phone calls home, positive phone calls home, build relationships with you and that child tremendously, actually, huge. It reinforces behaviors that you're seeing that you appreciate and you like. And you want to see more of. Because you're naming those things specifically in the phone call what you're noticing of what you're appreciating what you're grateful for their participation, their enthusiasm, their effort, their growth, whatever it is. It gains community support, because that grownup that you're talking to, is so incredibly grateful 99% of the time, and so taken aback and surprised and pleased with the phone call that they are then telling admin, they are telling their friends or parents of other students at the school. And most importantly, it's helping your mental emotional energy and your mindset because you're focusing on the positive things you're seeing in your classroom, because we are often more often than not being like bogged down by the challenge in class we have at that end of the day, or that nightmare after lunch, or whatever it is. It's forcing you to have moments and bursts of extreme positivity in the day. Because these families are so grateful to be hearing such awesome news from you. And the reality is, they don't hear it that often. I made a phone call yesterday, I actually called four kiddos yesterday. All of them positive. And two of these parents cried when I called, one cried because she had never received a positive phone call home and had only ever been negative or, you know, he's really having trouble focusing or I really need your support because he's up out of his seat a lot and I just, you know, need your teamwork to figure out how we can best support this child. She's never received a call that was just like, celebrating him for his efforts and his enthusiasm and his great energy. So she cried. And then another grown up that I called, also cried, but because she had never received a phone call period ever. And this was a parent of somebody who always is doing the right thing. Always on point, always a leader, like just one of those quiet. I do my work work at work hard kind of kids, she'd never received a phone call. Because this child was just always doing the right thing. But those families deserve to hear as much as the families have when we need support. 

Families Are So Grateful 

All four grownups that I called yesterday, we're so grateful and excited to get the call. And I am promising you the longest call, because I knew I was recording this podcast and writing the blog. The longest call I had was two minutes and 30 seconds long. The shortest I had was 50 seconds long. It's really quick and easy, because parents are busy, you know, you're busy, you literally are saying, you know, I'm on my way to heat up my lunch. But I wanted to call and tell you how awesome such and so is doing in class, and I'm so grateful for their engagement. It doesn't take long. And the impact is huge. 


 So this is my challenge for you. Today or tomorrow, depending on when you're listening to this. My challenge for you is to call three families, three different grownups because it's not always a parent, right? Three grownups about a positive message, a positive thing about their child about their student. Okay, three grownups, and then take a second to reflect on that. And record it, just write it down. So you remember which names of which kids you've called, I keep a roster, like I said, and I just marked Oh, I called them positive plus. And a quick note about what I called about. That way I can spread out my calls throughout the year. I'm so excited for you to experience this, I wrote a blog that you can find. It's my most recent blog, posting it today on October 26, 2022, depending on when you're listening to this, about the profound impact of positive phone calls home and include some story scripts, in case you want some more ideas of like what you could say and how to keep it short and sweet. Because I know that time is of the essence for us. So it includes some story scripts and also just some more reasons you should be doing this and why it is so incredibly powerful. I'm excited for you. I can't wait to hear how this impacts you. And I will talk to you next time. Until then I'll be teaching la vida loca and I am sure you will be too! Take care teacher. Bye bye.

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