One day, when I was at the end of my rope (and hadn't bothered to write any lesson plans), I decided to just tell the students a story about an experience in my life through which I learned a valuable lesson. To my surprise, they sat up and payed attention. They laughed. They asked questions. I was able to incorporate the basic points of the lesson that we had been working on that week. Before I knew it, the bell rang and class was over. It was amazing.
I learned something very important that day: sometimes it is better to be a story book than an encyclopedia. Don't misunderstand me, there is a time and place for encyclopedias. But that leads me to another important lesson that I learned: a good encyclopedia doesn't need a flashy cover in order to convince people how much information it contains. I had to learn to be comfortable in my own skin, instead of always trying to prove myself by sounding smart. Nobody likes an arrogant or insecure encyclopedia.