What are we focused on?

I came back to school after a 3 week break (thank you, polar vortex) rested & ready to engage with my kids again.  I really  do love my job.   Well, some days it seems like I love the idea and ideal of my job.  It seems like lately I’ve been (forced?) to approach my teaching as a product.   Get out the quota… pass the number of kids you should, test this %,  you must have this % at level x.  It’ll wear a body out.   But yesterday, I was bright-eyed and bushy-tailed.   Until lunch…   when I got the reminder that we have a writing assessment in 3 weeks.  A 2-hour 2 essay response to 2 texts writing assessment (for 13 year-olds).   Sigh.   So now we must write… every single day, every single ELA class period for 3 weeks.   I was Jekyll/Hyde….   I became very dull-eyed & flat tailed in a hurry.  

 

But I remembered a couple of things.   1.  I have these kids:  Image

these kids decided that in 2 weeks time, they would pair up & make 10 Christmas boxes for Operation Christmas Child.   This was strictly voluntary & this is what a few of them had to say:  “It [participating in OCC] made me feel that I am making a difference… “Hannah 8th grade.   “I am happy with what I have and am happy I could help with this”…  Samiya, 8th grade.  

2.  There is still an ideal in education.  Leaving the world with better human beings.   Part of that is academic.  There is something to be said for people who have been taught HOW to think (not what) & given lots of opportunities to put it into action.  In literature, science, history, the arts.   Part of it is also giving them a safe place to learn those things.   Letting them know that  it’s not all about them, but when it is, we are here.   

So, yes, I am mandated to give this test.  I am mandated to view my children, at least occasionally as scores & plan accordingly.   But, because I am who/what I am, I can also see them as human beings and try to give them hope for their future and mine.   And I can pray that someone who knows education & child development will get into the higher up offices & show our country what we really do every day.   

Today…  I choose to be bright-eyed & bushy-tailed and be thankful for my kids & try to live my own ideal.

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