Thursday, June 5, 2014

Positivity about the end of the school year?

I really need to get better about posing more attractively. And actually opening my eyes. Or just wearing sunglasses. Clearly, my vampiric eyeballs cannot withstand even a fraction of sunlight without turning into slits. 

Since I'm a teacher whose school year doesn't end until June 20th, most people have been asking me if I cannot wait for the school year to end. Honestly, if I've learned anything after 8 years of teaching, it's that you have to be realistic and understand that kids are kids. Keeping this bit of knowledge in my brain means I find more joy at the end of the year now than I did several years ago. Of course they're stir crazy, so are all of the teachers; I can't blame them! Anyway, instead of forcing students to bust their tails as hard as I've made them work all year, I'm scaling back a bit and asking them to apply all of the skills that they've learned by doing fun things (speeches about pet peeves and debates--teenagers love to argue; who knew?). 

Plus, I'm really trying to soak up this last bit of time with them before they move on to a new set of teachers, so my goal has become to know them, as people, even better. I am taking time to sit with them at their tables and chat with them about their assignments and lives. I feel like we teachers spend so much time focusing on content that we forget we're dealing with human beings, not automatons. (Well, I forget.) As teachers, we keep thinking about the agenda we have to fulfill by a certain date, so we forget to take time to learn our students, which is often the most important learning that can take place in a classroom.

 Today, 22 kids were absent from my 4th period because they were helping with 8th grade visitation. (Incoming freshmen come to visit the school during the school day.) Since only 7 of us were in the room, I spent the period talking with my students about different fruits I should try, becoming a master falconer (it's a thing, and it's cool), and insects. One of my students taught me about different kinds of praying mantises. (This one is my favorite. It looks like a Transformer!) This same student also breeds them (it's NOT illegal to have them, for the record) and gave one to me. His name is Archimedes, and he's our class pet. The boys love feeding him and watching him devour fruit flies! 

Anyway, though some of my students drive me mad at the end of the year, I am trying to enjoy their company as much as I can before they're someone else's students instead of mine. Granted, even when they leave our classrooms, are our students ever not our students? Hopefully, my fellow teachers are enjoying these last few weeks of school. 

The Look:
Cardigan: New York & Co.
Shirt: Target
Skirt: Gap
Shoes: Converse via DSW
Earrings: Francesca's

Here's the skirt in cold weather:


  1. Have I mentioned you are the best? I'm so glad there are teachers like you out in the world. Except I have to disagree with the praying mantis situation. Those guys are the worst. I swear they are trying to eat my soul or something.

  2. I feel like I get so caught up in goals and learning too. Sometimes I get frustrated when certain kids just can't figure it out (ie behavior, homework, etc) I really want to do a better job of showing I care about them as people and not just there academic success.

  3. That was so beautiful--what you said about your students, I mean. The outfit is great, too, but what you said about your students and wanting to know them was just beautiful. So many teachers get to the end of the year, or halfway, and they're just sick of their students, can't wait for them to leave, complain constantly etc. You know. I love seeing a teacher write about their students in a way that shows she actually cares about them. I'm not very eloquent, but I hope my meaning is coming across. I wish all teachers could feel this way!

  4. Well I'm glad to hear you aren't going crazy in the classroom! I'm sure super comfy teacher outfits help with the relaxing small period with your students :)

    I have a maxi in the same colors. I should try it with my new chucks. Officially pinned!

  5. What a great reminder of what (part of) teaching should be all about! With my students getting increasingly rambunctious, I feel like I keep trying to tighten the reigns. On Friday, though, I found myself just laughing at their antics and enjoying their personalities. While I recognize that I have to do this within reason (I can't let things get too out of control), I'm glad that I made this realization and can enjoy the next week and a half.

  6. I wish I had you as a teacher! Seriously, it so awesome that you are so intent on making the most of your last few weeks and getting to know the students so well! ANd love the maxi skirt with converse - such a great combination!

  7. DANIELLE. I so wish we lived right by each other and worked in the same district. If I have any teachers in my new school who act and think and teach the way you do, I'll be so happy. It's such a gift to have teachers that are not only passionate about sharing their knowledge and ensuring student learning, but also to have teachers that care deeply about the students they're teaching. As a school counselor, I get to hear the stories behind the students all the time, and it's frustrating to me that some teachers I work with don't seem to understand that so many of these kiddos deal with such shit in their lives, so when I hear about teachers that DO understand and care, it warms my heart to no end. THANK YOU for what you do and for being such an amazing woman/teacher!!

  8. Great post and you look great too making the best of that cute maxi skirt both for Summer and Winter. Pinned it and loved it so much with the Converse Sneakers. =)


Feel free to throw some witticisms my way.