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The Teacher Thread - Page 28

post #406 of 562
very good thread. thanks to deveandepot, nyranger and cbrown (and everyone else) for contributions. here's a short essay i wrote in twelfth grade. the assignment was a response paper to an essay about new york schools titled "savage inequalities" - the teacher was basically asking what we learned from our school careers. i was basically railing against the system in my immature way, but maybe you guys can gain some insight from my disillusionment
Quote:
The biggest thing that school taught me is that I do not like school. I hate classrooms. I hate having to huddle behind small desks while the teacher has a big one. I hate the endemic inequality in an education system that is allegedly against it. Schools, with all their iron bars and brick walls, have all the visual flair of a prison. In 10th grade, I was sent to a school called T.L. Kennedy in Toronto. This school had all the hallmarks of the New York public schools described in Savage Inequalities. The teachers were terrible, the condition of the building was terrible, there was no field, and there was a police station next door. The students, of course, were largely black and brown, and there was a strong sense of communal hatred for the authority figures that locked them up in this hellish place for eight hours a day. In fact, it was this collective anger that pushed me to feel that there would be no going to school after this, not for a long time. It was not long before I gained the ability to put into words what I truly felt about school. It was not prisons I was reminded of, so much as factories. The students were commodity X, subjected to process Y, to add capability Z – a very faceless, impersonal state of affairs. No wonder my teachers never looked me in the eyes. After all, we live in a capitalist society, and the education system definitely reflects that. Capitalism is all about investing something with the goal of getting returns on that investment. The investment made by society is us, the students. The expected returns are armies of indoctrinated robots – drones, trained to occupy fields of cubicles, buy rows of meaningless products, and march in line. Capitalist society needs – if I may shoplift a phrase – good corporate citizens. The only quibble I have with this is that I am not society’s property to invest. This may seem a presumptuous statement to make, but it is the only conclusion I can come to after reviewing all my experiences. School purportedly exists to equip the callow youth to survive in the real world. It does not succeed at this. Instead, throughout my youth, it blinded me to the fact that there is a real world, and instead gave me a fake world, inhabited mostly by fake people, with fake agendas and no real claim to being alive besides having a pulse. So where did all this lead me? After all, I am still in school. I attend it regularly, learn my lessons, and (occasionally) complete the work I am assigned. On the surface not much has changed, but in my head, everything has. I have finally found a role that fits me, the same one that eluded me in my younger days. I am a prisoner, yes, but I know that I am a prisoner. And unlike the other prisoners born and raised in this place, I know that there is an outside, and just that simple thought fills me with such a vicarious thrill for life that I find myself easily able to tackle the monotony I once found unbearable. So it is with the grizzled eyes of a student of life, not of any class, that I watch the proceedings in the classroom.
reading it again, i find it kind of stupid. this thread is challenging me to return to the topic to try and write something a bit more constructive
post #407 of 562
Quote:
Originally Posted by oman View Post
very good thread. thanks to deveandepot, nyranger and cbrown (and everyone else) for contributions.

here's a short essay i wrote in twelfth grade. the assignment was a response paper to an essay about new york schools titled "savage inequalities" - the teacher was basically asking what we learned from our school careers. i was basically railing against the system in my immature way, but maybe you guys can gain some insight from my disillusionment



reading it again, i find it kind of stupid. this thread is challenging me to return to the topic to try and write something a bit more constructive

I feel sorry for the students who work hard and want to learn. Budget cuts have hurt the good students too.
The high school I work at the most, currently has 2 male restrooms. There are always lines and they constanly smell like feces. I have seen a half dozen students in the last 2 years pee in the corner of the gymnasium, trash cans,... There are also so few janitors and maintenance men these days. Things just don't get fixed or cleaned.

Edit- Interesting story: On a Saturday 2 months ago I woke up at 5 AM and drove to this high school. I took my tool box and some cheap paint. I paid my 12 year old nephew $30 to help me. We fixed a few broken water fountains, fixed maybe 30 broken desks that were going to be trashed, and painted a few walls that were covered in graphic graffiti(Drawings of penises, curse words,...). I was out 6 hours and $60.

Edit 2- Despite things like this, they still say it will be at least 2 years before I can expect a full time position.
post #408 of 562
Quote:
Originally Posted by deveandepot1 View Post
I feel sorry for the students who work hard and want to learn. Budget cuts have hurt the good students too.
The high school I work at the most, currently has 2 male restrooms. There are always lines and they constanly smell like feces. I have seen a half dozen students in the last 2 years pee in the corner of the gymnasium, trash cans,... There are also so few janitors and maintenance men these days. Things just don't get fixed or cleaned.

Edit- Interesting story: On a Saturday 2 months ago I woke up at 5 AM and drove to this high school. I took my tool box and some cheap paint. I paid my 12 year old nephew $30 to help me. We fixed a few broken water fountains, fixed maybe 30 broken desks that were going to be trashed, and painted a few walls that were covered in graphic graffiti(Drawings of penises, curse words,...). I was out 6 hours and $60.

I understand. I painted the hall in the senior end one summer, my paint, I did have help from two seniors in the FFA program. The royal blue and white, which are the school's colors, had faded to a sky blue and yellowing white.... Even though I am not a plumber, we also fixed the leaks in all the boy's restrooms. The plumbing in spots has been there since the 1960s. This work took us about 3 days. All they did complain that I didn't paint the other halls.
post #409 of 562
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rambo View Post
The real problem is the removal of corporal punishment in schools.

They don't *technically* have it in Korea anymore, but I don't think it's necessary. The problem is that teachers can't punish at all some times. Virtually everything is contestable, and in many cases you end up with parents trying to backseat drive your classroom.
post #410 of 562
I grew up with a mild bit of corporal punishment in my early days at school - can't imagine today's kids not coming back angry and shooting up the school or doing something else to get even if they were punished this way nowadays.
post #411 of 562
Also, comparing Korean/Japanese students to American students- apples to oranges. Asian kids still have a general respect to their elders that American students gave up long ago, with who, the Baby Boomers? If you're teaching English in Korea you can generally stop the class when it gets crazy, look them in the eye, and say 'you're being rude to me' and they will have genuine shame and stop whatever it is they were doing.
post #412 of 562
Quote:
Originally Posted by impolyt_one View Post
Also, comparing Korean/Japanese students to American students- apples to oranges. Asian kids still have a general respect to their elders that American students gave up long ago, with who, the Baby Boomers? If you're teaching English in Korea you can generally stop the class when it gets crazy, look them in the eye, and say 'you're being rude to me' and they will have genuine shame and stop whatever it is they were doing.

Yeah, I've had this with Thai students as well.
post #413 of 562
my mother is a public school teacher, and my dad used to be one; my mother has few problems with students because she teaches vocational skills (graphic design) to the oldest of high school students and sometimes walk-in adults, and it's like an art class where they compete in regional competitions and go on field trips. It's good for the kids because they honestly have a lot stacked against them if you look at it from a nationwide point of view, but my mother makes sure she gets the district to always keep her computer labs new and with current software every year, and in 2011, I think that means a lot, it's giving students relevant contemporary tools to use to make money. I don't know how to use any of the programs she teaches because I'm a product of public schools 15 years ago when emailing at school was considered dangerous, but imagine how much better off kids would be if they took math classes that moved on quickly to calculators and Excel, or language arts classes that incorporated words + design to promote personal salesmanship and presentation/spoken skills? Maybe they do that nowadays, but we definitely did not do it when I was in school, and to be honest, I really do feel like I learned absolutely nothing in school, that includes 6 years at a public university. Everything I know in life, I had to teach myself.
post #414 of 562
Quote:
Originally Posted by O'Higgins View Post
I understand. I painted the hall in the senior end one summer, my paint, I did have help from two seniors in the FFA program. The royal blue and white, which are the school's colors, had faded to a sky blue and yellowing white.... Even though I am not a plumber, we also fixed the leaks in all the boy's restrooms. The plumbing in spots has been there since the 1960s. This work took us about 3 days. All they did complain that I didn't paint the other halls.

I didn't get any recognition from the administration either.
They were willing to just leave the graffiti there and toss a bunch of desks.
The head maintenance/janitor man was happy. He always has a huge list of things to fix.
post #415 of 562
Thread Starter 
http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/us/...ine.cnn?hpt=T2
post #416 of 562
Quote:
Originally Posted by NewYorkRanger View Post

Simple enough, give him a bucket and a rag and tell him clean some desks....That way he would know what the teacher or more likely the janitor has to do when some knot-head writes on the desk.
post #417 of 562
I can't stand it when they write on the desks. Some kids draw swastikas while others write the n word over and over again.

Edit- Some kids even write short stories. They are usually about drugs or violence, but at least it shows me they can at least write.
post #418 of 562
FYI-The best way to get pencil marks off a desk is with an eraser, but pen/ink is a little more difficult. I use nail polish remover and cotton balls. It usually works and is pretty cheap. Any dollar store should have cotton balls and cheap nail polish remover.
post #419 of 562
Quote:
Originally Posted by pvrhye View Post
They don't *technically* have it in Korea anymore, but I don't think it's necessary. The problem is that teachers can't punish at all some times. Virtually everything is contestable, and in many cases you end up with parents trying to backseat drive your classroom.
No, it isn't really all that necessary. The threat is where the money's at. These kids know that they can do basically whatever they want and not get punished for it. If the teacher could pop the kid on the knuckles with a ruler, or smack them upside the head for being disruptive (neither of which constitute CP in my book) then there would be FAR less discipline problems. The threat of being sent for a paddling, or being thrown in a school brig, would frighten some of these fuckers straight.
post #420 of 562
ahh, wow! Definitely! God guide us through our life while teachers teach us how to live. l love my teachers. "For those of you looking for teacher award recognition messages, here are a few sample recognition messages and layouts that might encourage those who teach. Feel free to use these in awards or gifts as you recognition or encourage your best teachers!"
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