Wednesday, April 06, 2005

generation tool

although i like to write about my day, i'm always wary to write about distinct events that might single me out as teacher X at school X in city X. meaning, i don't want to expose myself. then i think about how much i've already exposed and WHALA. i am here to spew.

I will not ramble off the litany of words I'd like to use to describe my stupid fucking sociology classes. I'm so fucking tired of dealing with them. I've got two classes, one of mostly APers and another full of these brain dead loonies. My first period includes four boys who think they rule the fucking world, including my classroom. Yes, you are smart. You are probably way smarter than everyone in this stupid class but here's the catch: I don't give a fuck. You are still 17 years old and, although you are graduating in May, you have not graduated yet. So sit the fuck down and shut-up. I'm so tired of their bullshit. I should add that this is partly my fault because I haven't discipline them appropriately.

(Madhatter, down on her knees). Will I ever master discipline? I thought I was doing so much better and, yet, my sociology classes are gaining on me. Why can't I get this down?!

I've got half the class bored and half the class lost. Half the class likes my class and half the class really doesn't care because it's an elective and they got put in there by a counselor. I haven't figured out how to balance my class yet and I really don't need these boys spitting out insults to me and the other kids in the class.

And my afternoon class. Good God. I think they went around the school and picked out the most apathetic, low-level, self-centered children and put them in my class. It is a terrible mix of kids. Okay, I'm just frusterated. Let me give you an anecdote to describe some of these kids.

I assign a jigsaw over minority groups in America. Instead of working, a group of girls are looking at a magazine. I walk over and find that it's a Seventeen magazine opened to a story about teenage girls sentenced to prison for various crimes. There are six pictures plastered across the pages with captions. The girls in my class are reading the captions and talking about what they would do to a girl who tried to "front on them" like that. I take the magazine up and one girls protests, "Ms, come on. Well, if you are going to take it, will you at least read it to us?" "You haven't read the article?" I ask. "No, it's too long. I'm not gonna read all that crap," she said. I stare at her. "This article is too long for you?"I ask. "Yeah, look at all those pages and shit. It's too long. I want you to read it tooo meee," she whines.
I know that you're wondering if this girl is a good reader and possibly thinking about reading strategies. Let me tell you this: This student is not a great reader nor a terrible one. She should definitely be a better reader, given that she's a senior and graduating in May. However, she's a smart kid and fully capable of reading a freaking two page article in Seventeen magazine.
So here we have a group of girls who are captivated by the storyline but too fucking lazy to read an article in Seventeen. It's not like this is academic writing. For fucks sake.

And it goes on from there. I'm so tired of my elective class serving as a dumping ground. I love sociology but I'm seriously considering not teaching it. Because these kids are unhappy no matter what I teach and I'm so fucking tired of their egos. Grrr.

Monday, April 04, 2005

hog heaven

when i decided to pursue my dream of teaching, i envisioned myself using socratic questioning methods and counseling kids in my spare time. i had this picturesque image of me and a student sitting together, the student pooring out his/her heart and then soaking in my wonderful advice. next, the student would follow my advice and blossom into a fuller human being. i know. it's egotistical but my intention was to help kids and get some satisfaction out of it. it was a win-win situation. honestly.
my dream never actualized until this week. this past week has been therapy time in my sunny classroom. i signed up for this mentoring program and i've managed to counsel five kids besides my assigned mentorees. and when i say counsel, i mean giving up lunches and off-periods to listen and talk with these kids. i'm used to the "usuals" dropping by but now my well-adjusted kids are sobbing or looking for direction. my loner kids who won't talk to anyone are pulling up a chair and spilling their guts. and you know i'm loving it. i'd like to add that i've been great about listening and not just advising. i have a tendency to lecture, i have to admit. and the best part is that these kids walk away with big smiles on their faces. and i feel like i'm really making a difference, not just droning on about old, dead, white people....
so hey, got a problem? come to madhatter's room! giving advice makes me feel like a better person.

Sunday, April 03, 2005

really i don't got none

has anyone else found that their grammar, both written and spoken, has become terrible since teaching? my "writing voice" spits out double negatives. and now i really use the word really a lot to really express myself.