111|Sima Aleahmad - Podcast Interview
If you walk on the sidewalk outside our school you might see blood. - Sima Aleahmad
Frightening words from Ms. Sima, an elementary school teacher in South Central, Los Angeles, one of the most violent school districts in the United States. But it is here in this place that Sima has chosen to work, spending 20 years empowering hearts and expanding the minds of underserved children. Sima says it is not rare to see kindergarten students kicking doors and punching teachers. An advocate for school improvement from the inside out, she is a beloved teacher whose classroom strategies reach into the hearts of children who live in a world filled with toxic stress and fear. She calls her philosophy the SIMA method which stands for: success is mindful awareness. www.thesimamethod.com. “One thing I know after 20 years of teaching is that all children really want is to love and be loved. Connecting with a child heart to heart is how we create fertile soil. It is how we plant the seeds for a child’s future.” Her third graders have learned how to be mindful of their actions, how to stop and “refresh” before reacting violently, and how to fill themselves and each other with compassion and love. And it’s not just the students Sima is transforming, it is her fellow teachers. Increased performance demands and complex student needs have made teaching more challenging the ever before. In this interview, Sima advocates that self-care for teachers is just as important as creating a daily lesson plan. Armed with a masters degree in Elementary Education, Sima is also National Board Certified in Teacher Leadership. In this interview, Sima speaks passionately about the violence she has experienced first hand, including the devastating loss of students who have been murdered. She also shares her success stories and the everlasting belief that what drives student success can’t be found in a textbook. For this exceptional woman, the meaning of success is simple: “I do whatever I can to make a child feel safe, secure and loved. I want to be that one teacher who changed a life.” #thesimamethod #storybehindhersuccess #inspiringteachers
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