One of my best friends and I were sitting around talking and the conversation turned to IEPs. Let me put this in perspective. My friend is a Spec.Ed supervisor and I am a 5th grade teacher. I was discussing how overwhelming IEPs are and the work Spec Ed teachers have, not only writing them, but following through on them, etc…
Archive for the ‘Elementary Education Blog’ Category
We are spending $30 billion a year to reduce class sizes, but a bad teacher with 30 kids is still a bad teacher with 16 kids. We should use those funds to increase salaries; great teachers can handle 30 students.
— Ron Clark (@mrronclark_) April 2, 2018
To which I responded:
OMG Great teachers can handle 30 kids? Why would we just want to “handle” them? We want to provide an environment where learning takes place. Where there is enough space to walk. Where a teacher can meet the needs of all our students. #smh #classsizematters
— Lisa M. (@BriteEyes49) April 2, 2018
I have to be honest.
For a number of years I was that teacher. The one who prophesied the negative places kids would end up.
“Yeah, he’ll be in jail in about two years.”
“She’ll be pregnant in middle school.”
Sometimes my prophecy would come true, and fortunately, sometimes it wouldn’t.READ MORE…
I will NEVER keep it locked in a safe.
I say this with the utmost certainty.
There is a huge debate going on about whether teachers should be armed in order to protect their students.
As usual, teachers’ voices are muted by the roar of non-educators who believe they know better. READ MORE…
They don’t understand.
When they discuss Rosa and the bus boycott, see the photographs, and videos, their voices echo, “But that’s not fair!”
As we study Dr.King, they question, “Why?”
I explain to them that it was the law. Segregation and Jim Crow laws. I explain to them that not everyone was like that. That people of different races came together to defeat this awful thing that made one group think they were better than another. READ MORE…
Sometimes, ok many times, she could be loud.
She rolled her eyes and twirled her neck. Often.
Her behavior was everyone else’s fault, never hers.
But as the school year progressed, she changed.
Was she perfect? By, no means.
Did I require perfection from her?
No, why should I?
But I observed waaaaay less yelling, bullying, eye rolling and neck twirling.
|In my End-of-the-Year card! 🙂|
I never yelled at her.
I talked to her, not “at” her.
I listened to her.
I would allow her to lead.
Let her use her voice for good.
I resisted the power struggle.
Had to, because sometimes she would take me there.:)
And we grew together throughout the school year.
We grew to understand each other.
She knew I “didn’t play”, but I loved her anyway.
She knew to grab that Ipad, set the timer for 5 minutes, and go to the buddy classroom because I needed a timeout. 🙂
I learned there was a girl who needed to know she was more than a loud, bullying, eye-rolling, neck twirling child.
We built a relationship.
As the school year ended, I chose her to be the mayor at JA Biztown.
She was amazing!
Everything ran smoothly, she gave her speech to the “citizens.”
I was so proud. What a leader!
But here’s the thing with the “bad” kid.
Some educators don’t want to let go of the label that has followed that student for years.
“I can’t believe out of all the kids in your room, you chose her to be the mayor!”
I have this pesky habit of believing in the “bad” kid, just as I believe in all my kids.
I believe in giving kids a fresh start, and not believing the hype that follows them.
I believe educators should stop chasing down the previous teachers to get the “scoop” on a child and then continue to treat that child the same way they were the previous year.
Thre’s no magic wand to change a child.
And sometimes, what is tried, fails.
This year, give the “bad” kid a chance to be viewed as good, or at least as worthy as everyone else.