Sunday, July 7, 2013

leading lambs to the slaughter

I've had a lot of time over the last year to sit back and take a look at my life and career. I can't help but be concerned about the educational system and the children who's lives it impacts. It seems as though ever 10-15 years a major revamping is undertaken by our state and federal government. No Child Left Behind appears to have left behind a huge number of children. Whatever happened to teaching the 3 R' s? It worked for me. I turned out pretty well I think. When did it become more important for our students to satisfy state and federal agencies by being reduced to a number? How many students are labeled as u.satisfactory because of one test? The one test that is really nothing more than a snapshot of that day, that moment? Is it really in the best interest of that student when he or she may be sick, tired, or scared because daddy came home drunk, grandma lost her job or they aren't sure where they'll sleep that night? 
Don't get me wrong, I understand the reasoning behind state testing. But really folks, how fair is it to issue a blanket test on students across the state when not every school has the same curriculum? Sure we all use the same states skills that we teach, but how different do you think a teacher in a sprawling metro school relays those skills compared to that of a tiny country school with a population of less than 200? That's like sending a vegetarian to work in a butcher shop.  My feelings on state mandated testing is really pretty simple. Every school teach from the exact textbooks at the same pace and test every nine weeks. Problem solved. 
That's just my opinion. I could be wrong. 

Friday, May 10, 2013

Settling In

My sister once asked me how did I know that teaching was what God wanted me to do with my life. I looked at her in amazement and said, "Think about our childhood!" I can remember lining my dolls up and teaching before I even started school. My mama was a Sunday school teacher and I thought that had to be the best job in the world. I was right.

I've taught little bitties, kindergarten, 4th grade and this year 5th grade. I feel like I've finally found where I'm meant to be. My niche, where I feel at home.... Everyone is so Leary of 5th grade. Students are tested in every area across the curriculum. How that makes a difference, I don't know. I mean I am responsible for teaching the material to them regardless of whether or not they test over it. I'm already so excited about the coming school year that my brain is going non-stop. Ideas are flooding my brain faster than pins on Pinterest! Don't get me wrong, I have taught my students well. They are amazing and my heart hurts knowing they will be in a different building. But every good teacher strives to be a better teacher. It's just that I find ways that I think will make learning easier, more dun and allow my students to take responsibility over their education. When you put learning in their hands it gives them a sense of ownership. That makes it matter to them . They become proud of their work. Not just trying to make good grades so mom doesn't get mad!

Oh wow! I love my job! 5th grade rocks! I know you're all wishing that you were a teacher now.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Conversations with myself

I am my own worst enemy. I do and then I ask why. Shouldn't it be the other way around? Ask the question, weigh the pros and cons and then come to a sensible answer. If I had half the brain they say I have, wouldn't I ask the obvious question before making my final answer? That would solve 99% of all my problems. Which would effectively make my life a near perfect place to be. So do I wait to answer until after the question is asked?

Apparently my sense of self-preservation has not learned to listen to either my left or right brain. I'm not really sure if it listens at all. Or if I even have any self-preservation. I suppose since I obviously have no common sense over my own will, I shouldn't be held accountable for the shameless dither that my brain spouts out through my mouth. Or the unending actions of self-destruction I manage to do on a more than daily basis. Yet if my sense of self-preservation hasn't kicked in after thousands of slap downs, will denial of accountability hurt or help? If no one is to blame then no one can complain. If I complain, then who accepts the blame? On the off chance that I stumble upon some stray morsel of good that I've done, is no one the glory finder? Because if I can't blame my lack of self-preservation for the hideous aftermath that is my life, then I can't scream for recognition of that one moment of glory.

People wonder why I'm quiet sometimes. It's hard to have a serious conversation with someone when you are having one with yourself.