As we all know, teaching isn't just about academics. In fact, academics are the least of it sometimes. Our job is to raise good human beings - or, at the very least, to try. And as I think back over my years in teaching, I'm feeling pretty good about that.
Today, during the pandemic, with states beginning to reopen, including the beaches and parks of the Jersey Shore, there are many choices that need to be made. If we did it right, as teachers, we gave our former students the power - as adults - to make the right ones: to wear masks, to social distance, to stay away from large gatherings, to be very careful. At least, that's my choice.
Lost - and found. It's a simple simile, really: our students as small, perfectly cut diamonds, just waiting to be discovered. Each of them bright with promise we might never see, might never find; each day a waiting game, a hope that we might glimpse that flash of light, for just a moment, and - even more - help those lost souls to believe that there is something deep inside worth finding.
Early in my teaching career, I realized that I had to anticipate the trips, falls, and spills my students would no doubt be witnessing by sharing with them, on Day 1, that I was a klutz.
It's pretty safe to say that no one in education is unhappy about the cancellation of state testing due to the pandemic. However, for many years, there was something that my homeroom students looked forward to once the tests were safely back in the administrators' hands and we waited for the all clear and move to lunch: playing cards.
Last year, at just about this time, educators all across New Jersey were reluctantly preparing for our annual state testing. We had grade-level meetings, at the end of which we signed our lives away on forms that said we would protect and defend these tests with our lives. This wasn't just theoretical; in the event … Continue reading #37 – Testing, Testing . . .
April 2019 Today, school has opened up again after spring break. Of course, nothing at all has changed in terms of the place from which teachers are meeting with students and creating virtual lessons. It's possible that, over this past week, some educators were feeling productive enough to better organize that environment. After all, when … Continue reading # 36 – A Place to Call Home
Just about a year ago, on the half day preceding spring break, my students came together outside, chalk in hand, to celebrate it all: spring, break, and - yes - poetry. , , , I'm reminded of this in April of 2020, during the present coronavirus pandemic,.as I pass sidewalk scenes in my neighborhood on walks and through photographs I've viewed on social media.
https://videopress.com/v/3cmyWMjj?preloadContent=metadata April Fool’s Prank 2019: Cell phones going off inside students’ lockers. Not bad. There’s a video of the students’ 2019 prank, but it’s not available at my subscription level. Imagine, instead, walking down the hall and hearing the sound of beeps and buzzes from the cellphones inside the lockers of many, many students. As … Continue reading #34 – April Fool’s Day
Pajama Day 2019 - the only year I participated It's been two weeks since I last posted on this site, and in that time, our lives have changed irreparably. Certainly, when I chose this photograph to use as my next blog entry, I had no idea how ironic it would be. Pajamas, after all, are … Continue reading #33 – Pajama Day