Thursday, September 28, 2006

Teacher meme

I've seen this floating around and decided that it would be an interesting meme to fill out.

1. I am a good teacher because..........I honestly think that I was born to do this, and I will forever work to get better. I don't know if I will ever be "great" at teaching because I have seen great teachers, and I just look in awe at the impact they have on kids. I can only work and hope.

2. If I weren't a teacher, I would air traffic controller. Something attracted me to that job before I was teaching, and I still think that it is a fascinating job. I would either do that or maybe work as a research analyst for Goldman Sachs.

3. My teaching style is.................real, period. I bring my attitude to the classroom, meaning that I expect a lot from my kids, but I also express a caring and fun attitude when it is appropriate. Even though every teacher school doesn't recommend it, I use sarcasm and very whitty banter. Of course, I teach Seniors in Government and Economics, and they buy into the environment. The trick is making your attitude conducive to teaching, which I'm having fun doing.

4. My classroom little world. I have student projects and business models on one wall, a huge bookshelf "classroom library" in the back, a chalkboard, and a white board. My desk is a bit messy, but I know where everything is. I have a T.V., VCR, DVD on a cart in the corner, and a laptop with LCD in the middle. It is my newest, most wonderful toy. I have a Darth Tater on my table, a Darth Vader helmet on my shelf, and a 6' Darth Vader stand-up in the back corner of the classroom.

5. My lesson plans..............are nothing like what they teach you in the credential program. Government is now automatic, Economics finding new things, and International Studies is outlined for the year, but detailed on a week to week basis. The more detailed the plans, the easier it is to adjust and the easier to becomes down the road.

6. One of my teaching goals make students enact some kind of positive change, and to have some knowledge of what is going on "out there". Reading and writing is sort of also a priority.

7. The toughest part of teaching is..............the fact that society doesn't really buy into the importance of education. Students are only what we expect of them, and currently society doesn't expect enough. Kids are not apathetic by nature, they are only modeling behavior that they witness. For education to change, society needs to take it seriously.

8. The thing I love most about teaching is.............everything changes, and teacher's have the power to make things better. Despite everything that goes against teachers and education, we truly can make a difference in the classroom, where all the magic happens.

9. A common misconception about teaching is....................that we don't work as long as "working people". Bullshit. Most of us get to school early, leave late, and do a ton of work at home and on the weekends. As for those "summers off", I go to school (30 units last summer), run basketball camps and clinics, and then take weeks to prepare my classroom and curriculum. Until you actually step inside a classroom (especially a special education classroom), shut-up.

10. The most important thing I've learned since I started that you must pick and choose your battles, and those that you pick to fight must be done with the utmost professionalism and documentation. How you handle (or don't handle) things at the beginning of the year can have a big impact on the rest of the year.
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