Monthly Archives: October 2013

“I refuse to answer that question on the grounds that I don’t know the answer” — Douglas Adams

Thank you to goodreads.com for helping me find the perfect title for this week’s blog post; without your handy quotes section, I would have probably had to “Google.” —- When did Google become a verb? I think I like it, but when did that happen? 

As you might have guessed, this blog post contains my four (4) questions (?). This blog also contains reflections from my trip to Pine Ridge on the struggle bus. Continue reading to learn what else is in this blog. 

My four questions:

1. Just how much trouble am I going to be in for consoling my students with hugs? I am a hugger. I like to have hugs when I need extra loved. I love to give hugs to console people. I am going to struggle with this boundary that everyone tells me is not able to be crossed without potentially losing my job. Is this probably a silly question? Yes. Do I really want to know this answer though? Yes. (Don’t judge me.)

Honestly, I didn’t even know this song existed before I “Googled” “Don’t Judge Me.” He probably should hope no one judged him on this song/ video. (No offense or anything)

2. How do we deal with “that” kid or “those” kids that just won’t? “Those” kids that won’t do anything, won’t disrupt others, won’t care… I struggle with this concept because I think that students should all want to be there and therefore should want to be in my class, but the kids who “won’t” actually still exist. (Weird, eh?) <sarcasm

was that sarcasm??

I love Sheldon!

3. Are reading and writing workshop-style classrooms really common (at all?) in the traditional public school system, or has this area just not really caught onto it yet? We went to Pine Ridge, SD today for some multicultural/ human relations lessons. I visited the Wolf Creek schools and thoroughly enjoyed the alternative school there. Each classroom had its own classroom library of sorts. Each classroom also works as workshops in that each student works at his or her own pace and each student worked on a project in which he or she was interested. I have always been intrigued by alternative schools, but I think I could enjoy working in a small one.

I like it.

While we are on the topic of the field trip, I would like to add that I did not feel well on this trip and I was stuck on the struggle bus. I was so exquisitely happy to find out that we would be getting home an hour ahead of time. Also, I feel badly for unloved animals and for senselessly ignorant humans. Also, also, cemeteries are awkward, depressing, and slightly interesting to make part of the field trip. 

4. What if I am not a good teacher? What if I fail? Yes, I know, these are technically two questions, but they are related so they count as one. (My blog. My rules.) These are serious questions I have about my future as an educator. I do not want to fail my students and I do want to be a good teacher, but what if I just suck. What then?

Two sentiments on this topic:

failure-success

and

How to Become a Total Failure - The ten rules of highly unsucessful people - No Success Yes, there’s a link: http://tenwaystofail.com/

 

So there are my four(4) questions(?). I do not know if I have more or if I don’t, but I do know that I am becoming increasingly impatient to get my placements and finally get out into the field. 

Thank you for sticking with me to the end of this blog, dear reader. I appreciate your efforts and want to reward you with a mini dance party….

of Kittens!!!

and Ninja-cats!

I need to see if there is a “Cats in the Classroom” session at the NCTE Convention. If there isn’t one now, there should be one soon. 

hope

 Allergies=dark world in this case. 

Reflections from Wednesday

First of all, we have some awesome people in this class. Golly gee!! I want to give a shout out to everyone in my English 461, English Methods course. I do not know how to tag everyone or I would and then you’d all be forced to read my blog. Evil- genius plan? Yes- muaahuahhuaahah (<evil laugh>). 

Okay that was silly, but seriously, you ladies all rock. Just to recap the session from Wednesday: WE ARE OFFICIALLY GOING TO GO TO BOSTON TO THE NCTE CONVENTION!!!!!!! Yes, that is supposed to be yelled in excitement.  We are selling raffle tickets and Laura is a boss at doing her first raffle! 

 

I couldn’t decide which one I liked better, so I added both!

Mariah introduced us to read arounds. I threw resources at you guys and we all had great discussions throughout the entire class session. I learned to never make assumptions about what students know. I also learned that I need to stop and gather myself before I begin class. 

Take A Deep Breath It's Hump Day

Cats and Hump Day, can this picture get any better? (the answer is, “not likely”)

 

YES!!

That was just this Wednesday. 🙂

Sentiment

I have been told to use emotional topics to try and capture my students attention. I know this professor meant to get my students fired up and excited about things that interest the students. Sounds a lot like social justice, right? Great! So what about when using emotion backfires? No one tells you about that. Also, no one has really ever explained what happens when a student has a melt down or freaks out because of something I said or because they are just having a bad day. I know I will probably just figure things out, but I am TERRIFIED that I am just going to make the situation just bad or worse. 

Insert cliche picture here:

Also, as I am slowly learning in my life that I am accidentally rude. How is that possible, you may ask? Well, I think it occurs most when I am trying to be funny, but then it just back fires. Things go from funny to “wtf?” in a hurry. Hence, I am concerned that I will not be good at making connections with some or most of my students. 

I am really trying to stay on topic with this one. 

I feel like I have endless questions, but I just want to know. I want to be able to step into my first classroom and feel like I can do something right, but lately I feel that all I am going to do is be an awful teacher and my poor kids are going to suffer from it. 😦 

Short blog this time, but I think it might just be a perfect length for this topic. Which leads me to the thing I first thought of when I decided on this blog title:

Right around 1:25- 1:28

 

Also:

Cute Cats - cats Photo 

Love it! Also, how I feel right now. “Please just be kind and feed me!”

I want to be a lone nut, not just a nut

I have a lot on my mind right now. As it turns out, this semester has been extremely exhausting. Now, it is mid-term and guess what? I quite honestly barely remember September. I keep asking myself, “Where did the time go?” I feel like this fast-paced tempo might be something I need to get used to for when I am a teacher. Just to get a feel for my schedule, here’s what I have to do this week. I have to present reading strategies, a graphic organizer, and an anticipatory set for block. I have monster readings for Literary Criticism. I have a presentation over Social Justice for methods. (I really hope it rocks, will be discussed later.) I have a late night event to work on Thursday. Oh, just to top it off, I have to take TWO Praxis II tests this week; one Tuesday and one Thursday at 8 am. Needless to say, I really didn’t want to go for 36 hours without power. Phew! Now that my venting is over, here is what I want to actually talk about in this lovely blog.

responders angry people venting intiminate real kooks bothersome angry person 

This is how I feel right now.

I have been reading a ton about Social Justice. I am not going to spoil my presentation on Wednesday by going into detail, but what I have been reading is really great! I am re-analyzing how I look at my classroom, especially for juniors and seniors. I struggle to think that I will teach this unit to students I have for more than one year in a row because I don’t know if my students will just turn in the same project each year. Can anyone help me with this just a bit with this potential problem?

As a pre-service educator I have been subjected to a wide variety of helpful hints and resources. The shear amount of information is a little overwhelming. One thing I really enjoy is the advice to be “the lone nut.” This idea is terrifying and potentially embarrassing. Then I had this one teacher who is just a nut. I would go into details, but it’s not particularly nice.  

As Thumper says:

 

Though this semester may be a bit overwhelming, a little confusing, and a lot conflicting, I am slowly learning who I want to be in the classroom and who I want to avoid being in the classroom. 

I cannot wait to tell everyone what I have learned. I am excited to be figuring out my teacher self!

 

20111006-023345.jpg

 

“Dead” lines

It has taken me almost a whole week just to figure out how I feel about this whole deadline issue. I think we have to work with our classroom to create what works best for our students. Dr. Ellington’s method worked well for her students, but I talked to a teacher in schools today and she said that would not work well for her students. I can work with this information. I think the “hunt down” method can be fantastic for the right students at the right time. I think deadlines are important for many students’ success. However, in the end, it comes back to what each student needs to be successful. Can’t I have “secret” side deals for when students need the help?

Maybe the reason it took me so long to figure this out is because of the insane amount of things due for me in the next two weeks. Will I get my work done? Yes. Will it be the most thorough? Maybe not, but that’s okay because at least I will have a great start on things that can be developed into something more beautiful later. I think my current situation may have an influence on how I set up my classroom. I would like to help my students not be zombies, but I just fear that what I do might not make any difference at all and end dream as a teacher will be shattered. I just want to make a difference and help my students, but I fear that I will miss many opportunities to help. 

Courtesy of AMC's The Walking Dead.

I feel these quotes represent all that I am feeling right now in life: 

“There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.” — Paulo Coelho (The Alchemist) 

“I am learning all the time. My tombstone will be my diploma.” — Eartha Kitt

Fear is  Liar