As I sit here writing this, my daughter is safe. She texted me at 5:58 PM to let me know and apologized because she had been in class when I had texted her earlier in the day. I didn't know what she was talking about, but then again, I did. Of course I did. As… Continue reading Just Another Day in the USA
Today's headline was this. And I just can't. I can't perpetuate the myth that people who shoot innocent children in schools do so because they were bullied. I can't accept that somehow a mass murderer deserves my sympathy as much as or more than the victims and their families. I can't tell my children or… Continue reading Stop Telling Kids to be Nicer to Bullies
Today is the first day of your short session. It was adjourned, as I have read it, within 30 minutes of its call to order. This, with approximately 20,000 North Carolina teachers on your doorstep. We expect more from our lawmakers, just as we expect more from our students. As educators, we are responsible for… Continue reading North Carolina Legislators, Please Note
This week I was told that in an active shooter situation, I should get my students to safety, barricade my doors and then stand to the side of the door so that I could engage and possibly disarm an active shooter. It wasn't bad advice, and I trust the source of the advice. I agree… Continue reading We Are Not Soldiers
Sometime during the month February, when winter break is a distant memory, and middle school students and teachers dare not yet start dreaming of spring break, I read an abbreviated version of the myth of Sisyphus to my sixth graders. On this one of many "Philosophy Fridays," we talk about how Sisyphus, King of Corinth, was notorious for his… Continue reading Sisyphus, Spring Break, and the Middle School Student
Following a recent NPR story about the growing teacher shortage, a follow-up question was asked: "Why do teachers stay in the profession?" To me, this question is not as easily answered as the question of why teachers leave the profession. I think that to answer this, one has to look at the dynamics of relationships.… Continue reading Why We Stay – What Teaching and Relationships have in Common
In a recent NPR story, reporter Eric Westervelt has gotten around to saying something I've been predicting for at least a decade: a nationwide teacher shortage is imminent. Westervelt ponders the trend, citing things such as: declining teacher pay; demoralization of the teaching profession within society; pressures associated with standardized testing and teacher evaluations; and more options… Continue reading Let’s Ask the Students, Shall We?