Tag Archive: teaching


Thoughts of a Teacher  I

I wrote this reflection a while ago…..I just went back to revisit it.  I’m going to split it into parts.   Not sure if it’s any good but I found it cathartic.

When considering the needs of the classroom environment,I have to give accolades to anyone who bears in mind the importance of “Good Morning”  or “Good Afternoon”  “Ladies and Gentleman” and “Boys and Girls.”  I’m impressed with any who can approach  29-37 different critics every 45 minutes.  I’m even slightly impressed by people who can  attempt to do it, a year, or few months of their lives.  Imagine a broadway actor performing multiple one matinees- back to back.   Or watching a Diane Walters delivering the news interactively, and then being responsible for the graphics and the updates.  Every person who enters the classroom and calls themselves a teacher is suddenly a performer who might have to walk a high wire, but maintain a smile for the audience.  Despite frustrations that may arise, it’s important that we keep a positive environment facilitated.

When every day is full of new attitudes and  memos, or late buses, or apathy, It’s taken a lot of guesswork how to keep my stress from being palpable .  The disparity between what my chosen career that I’ve accepted, and what I find when I get to most schools now has irony written all over it.  As it is, I wake up and figure out some way to completely backwards plan a lesson with a group of kids with unspecified grade levels, and keep it interesting but not too interesting that any random evaluator doesn’t think its slacking off.  I mean, the first judges are those next to the time clock.   Those office people so often sullen.  Not only do I have to smile and get them to notice me.  I also have to figure out a way to sell that it ‘s gong to be a great day for me, for the birds, them school office slavers, and ultimately the kids. It is because of such organizational and radical uncertainty that I prefer not to work with younger students.    With it’s a one man show, and they all want autographs.  Unless they don’t because they are too busy getting ready to perform the knife throwing acts!   All these things race through my head before GMA or the Today Show roll credits, and a 9-5 worker has even bid their sweet dreams goodbye are large plates that each part of the meal (the school day) rests way too much upon their classroom teacher.

While Guest Teaching (substituting) a few years back, I accepted a call for a special education spot, and while it was not disastrous,  had there been another hour in the school day, it would have been overwhelming .  I had done my research on reviews for the school, and saw that they had a lot of CTT, and Resource Room Classes.  I had assumed that since my designation was Special Education that I would be the assistant, or lackey to the general education teacher.  I imagined that I would drift, and make sure learning was focused, and that different kids who seemed lost could be re –directed into another direction towards understanding.  What I found in actuality that occurred was that the classroom teacher may have had a dual certification, because there were tons of differently abled learners in the class.

[Continued in Part II]

 

 

Chester Kent

Magic and Love

Much has changed since I last posted, and I’ve been lax, idling on spending the rare few moments that it would take to do. Grr.

I have to revisit posts, but I don’t know if I mentioned this school I’ve been at quite frequently. I call it ‘The School of Magic and Love.’ And it really is such- Magic in what happens daily, and love for what it feels like to be there.
At this school, everything is done damned near right as far as school organization (structure and functional day to day existence.) Mr. APorg has it down pack and he runs a tight ship, where everyone knows what they should be doing, and seemingly no one- students and teachers alike are afraid to ask. The Head AP, Mr. Guiding Hand- he hovers, and is seemingly omni present but never in a way that is overbearing or as if he is looking for a way to say “Gotcha.” I have only heard one teacher make a valid complaint about either of them, and wel, the oly thing I can think in regards to that is to say that sometimes we all deal with bureaucracy

Slowly, I’m getting the staffs personalities down. I only want to smack one, and that quite possibly s because I can’t figure it her age so that I can tell how much I want to hit her. She makes chatter chatter, chatter, Penelope (Kirsten Wiig) on SNL style. All the other teachers come and go; all havd been very polite or at the very least, they haven’t rudely stared over me. And even if they don’t know my name, they have seen my fave and proffer a smile- perhaps generic but at least in earnst. And th office support staff never walks by without saying hi.

But what makes the real magic and love are the students. They may not always come ready, but damn they get around to learning. Even the freshman work hard to finish things early to get a sense of revision. This is not a screened school where students test into. And even though District uh and who have first or preferential status in regards to being selected- there are probably more students from Harlem, The Heights, Fordham (from the Bronx) and parts of Brooklyn. I almost confiscated a girls phone because it was out, and thought she was goofing off- but she said to me “I wrote a daft of my paper, the way you showed me on my phone on the way back to The Heights yesterday.” And indeed there on her phone was a paper that she drafted ion her long way home.

Let me reiterate- it is the inquisitive nature of the students, who are that right mixture of mature while still being in high school. They are never too hood too saved by the bell, and I’ve not seen play fighting or any bullying. They all somewhat get along, and don’t mind helping out or working with other members of their family.

More on this school, when its not 3 am, But everyday there Is….

Fuckng amazing.

-Chester Kent

Bittersweet Symphony

Bittersweet Symphony

So Degrassi did it. A popular character committed suicide. I finally re-watched the episode. It was tough and I still have tears drying in my face. I’ve invested a lot n these characters, much in the way I have when I’ve had students who are open.

I am very well acquainted with death, suicide and all that. My high school existence/ experience probably wasn’t as bad as I remember it, but I don’t want to open the coffins that I’ve buried those memories in. As I’ve dealt with more and more types of students, I’ve noticed it’s school isn’t as it was for me, and the skills we need to adapt aren’t ever fully comprehensible because who knows what we have to adapt to. Really, what I mean to say is, everything is different for everyone, and the worst we can do is forget that. Some people can travel miles on the road, and for some the body or the mind just “can’t.”

I’m learning what kind of educator I want to be. I realize a different skill or pet peeve everyday. From my frustrations, I see that I hope my legacy will not be that some kid recalls that I taught him or her how to do such and such, but rather that they can do such and such and without having to recall. That such and such isn’t a problem. That it is second nature.
I’d rather be there for my students as someone effective, progressive, challenging and ultimately someone they understood wasn’t doing it for just a paycheck (even if that is what it feels like right now.). I have an interest in improving the world for them and showing them something more than Pelham Parkway, or the blocks of city South of where their school is. I wish to make them anlittle more considerate of their siblings who look up to them or to the casual 2, , A of whatever train they plan on terrorizing on the way home.

A student in California also name Campbell also committed suicide. Sad right. A page right out of Degrassi.
Life and art align or imitate each other and it’s sad. The hardest part of life is living it, and moving on when people don’t. I certainly haven’t gotten most things right. And I’m certain I’m probably going to get a helluva lot more wrong. Different pathways for different people,

But back to Degrassi…..
The Two parts of the episodes were not directly too hard to understand but are hard to forget.That is, the characters all suffered through some part of the grief cycle. Dallas, the hockey captain, felt anger with himself for pushing Cam to hard. Maya, Cam’s girlfriend, spent most of the second part in shock. Her pain was palpable when she pondered “When are people going to stop looking at me as the girlfriend of the kid who killed himself.” The actors did a fantastic job, and I could, as I can always- see this episode as a sounding board for the topic in advisory or home room. Some of these episodes are Public Service Announcements. And while the idea is “corny”. PSA ‘s really do reach some people.

All of this is convoluted and dense I know, but I just spent some time mourning a tv show character and a few of my friends I’ve lost on broken roads. But we go on until we can’t right?

[Chester Kent]

Op-ed Response

I blinked when I first read this a few weeks ago.

Though about 70 percent of city students are black or Hispanic, from 2006 to 2012 the two groups, combined, were offered only about 15 percent of the seats at the specialized high schools, according to the Education Department.

A little askew right? Numbers aren’t mine thing; if they were I wouldn’t be so broke all the time. But I know 70% off. I shop that bin quite frequently. 70% seems like a much smaller number considering years have gone by when I haven’t seen a self-identified caucasian student (though most of the teachers I’ve worked with are.)

And it’s been on my head a lot, and then I read an OP-Ed about the same thing, and something has been burning in me fierce for the past few hours.

Note II: The Article in which I am talking about can be found here.

On the NYPOST website. I know.

The first commentary in this topic regarding “the NAACP’s lawsuit against STHSAT” is full of unneccessary-ness. I can’t really express my disgust at the venom he carries regarding the lawsuit. I am not really up for engaging every point he says in a point, counter point way, but I must implore him to look at the facts of the situation.

The NYC Public school system is overwhelmingly minority. Not just any minority but Black, and Hispanic- and then the rest of the races filter in. There are weeks that I’ve gone by without seeing a white child, and if there if there are Asian students, they most certainly do not number such to claim the majority in a classroom. I’ve also seen firsthand that the Catholic Schools of New York, also have a seemingly overwhelming minority population (primarily hispanic.)

Enrollment data from the Dept. of Ed. shows that of the NYC Schools over half are overwhelming (90% or more) of just one race class, being Black or Hispanic. Thus that puts the number of schools roughly somewhere near 800 that are purely separated by one single minority. Now consider this statement, there are another 500 hundred schools that are 75% of both races combined. Thus by randomly picking the top students at most school and filling them in proportionally at Honors/Specialized High Schools – those schools should reflect the population of the City that it serves in some way. Yet, Asians hold most of the spots, then followed by whites, then blacks and then hispanics. The situation is highly reversed from what the typical school looks like. Anyone who thinks that there is nothing wrong with this situation must still believe that racial bias died with Brown Vs The Board of Education. Separate but Equal was disproved as anything but in 1954, why does anyone not see the equivalency in the situation now.

If it’s been proven to show that the CollegeBoard’s SAT has a racial slant in the stories and words used, then why can’t it be feasible to believe that the Specialized High School Admission Tests ShSAT’s can have the same bias. This wouldn’t be the first time that the courts have ruled against a public authority in NYC- the Firefighter’s exam was deemed racially biased in 2012 and millions were awarded to minority applicants.

It is possible that both social and economic conditions as well, as a biases in the test can contribute to situation at hand. There are other things tearing at our social fabric but to subtly suggest that a race or “Welfare” card is being thrown around- it is almost morally irredeemable in an argument. Contrary to what the lead dissenter has said, there are in fact single parent homes of all races, and all family sizes that struggle and push their children to strive harder.

This has gotten overly long and I would like to revisit this soon. However, the fact of the matter is, there is clearly something wrong when in a public system in one of America’s richest cities, that the coveted spots, the Faberge eggs of students that should be shining as examples for the hardest of stones. Really, all school should be amazing, and ideally all students would be motivated but they aren’t. When Bloomberg dismantled G&T programs and set the standard for entrance to schools at a number he failed the essay portion of what it means to be involved in teaching. More and more we are telling our children that the raw score counts but that is not the only thing that will make your grade. We are being impressed that assessment should come in different forms; not everyone knows how to game a test, but showing that you can apply the skills instead of rote recall has its merits. What Math teacher hasn’t said show your work! On the Regents, you have to demonstrate the steps to arriving there. The damned test isn’t maker or breaker of life- Steve Jobs didn’t finish college. And who hasn’t heard of a musician who doesn’t read well, but plays beautifully? Or an artist that doesn’t know everyone Expressionist but can show you in practice what could not be reduced to answers A-D. Wasn’t Good Will Hunting about this?

Even now, NY State moves towards a portfolio assessment of its teachers skills, to gauge their teaching skills because testing just wasn’t enough. Sure,a nice score has its merits, but just because someone isn’t able to recall everyone of Dewey’s educational principals doesn’t mean that they are not familiar with other techniques. Nor does recalling every principle mean that you can put them into action effectively.

There’s not a thing yet as a perfect test, yet. Especially for large groups. Which means we need to tailor the tests and make sure that we are giving he right test for the right person. The GRE has learned that with its adaptive reasoning ability. My thoughts are not for a quota or something like that. I believe just as one commenter suggested that EVERY student should have access to tutors or help to get into these schools or high quality programs. Hell, I couldn’t afford that. That’s several Ipads. And a few Ipad mini’s too. Or a good used car. I’ve watched some hard-working, smart children sit in classes that are ruined by kids who didn’t want to be there, who would rather be chilling out in the hood or something, but because they are forced to be there they are. I’ve personally have left work frustrated as all hell because I couldn’t give more time to a student who was there and ready and saying “teach me” but little Johnny Brat- whose parents are by no means poor or crack friends-decided that that was the period to play football.

NYC has pushed for Inclusion of Special Education children into General Education classes so why not give General Education ranked children who show the aptitude the chance to excel and thrive in these specialized programs; I think that’s a fair solution, and if they start falling or can’t keep up, then at that time, let’s reassess their options. Let’s make an IEP for their “handicap” in this situation. But this quote “the score’s, the score and life ain’t always fair” that Bloomberg said, is the score is nonsense. Why modify with “life aim’t always fair” unless there is something unbalancing the ground.

I’m really curious to see where the Mode (the number that appears the most) Score of the underrepresented minorities lie. Is there even one, or are they just missing the slightly. But there’s no way that you can tell that there are entire districts in the 5 boroughs where there were no students who scored well enough to even sit for the exam. 65% of students don’t have access to these schools.

Blink.

Again, I’d like to revisit this, but something clearly is wrong.

For some additional reading, check out this New York Times Article. This article contains the lead in quote I used.

[Chester Kent]

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I am very glad that the holiday season is over. It is much like summer vacation for me; a weird reminder that there are other things to worry about outside of finding gainful employment and some place that has cheap drinks. This is from my own viewpoint as both a teacher and being who has to do the things that other people go through.

During the school year, I’m always trying to make the social connections and political ones that will keep me in the know, especially at the top of my craft. The hustle bustle of NYC grows every year that I’m here. Look at the record number of visitors who come to Times Square to watch a ball drop. In slow motion. Slow. Motion.

But I’m not going to lie, I understand them. I, much like Holden Caulfield, Carrie Bradshaw, or the 19 year old me, love this city. And I, like everyone who has been on a express train that has gone out of service, or has happened to be at the wrong McDonald’s, New York Public Library, or Post Office often times hate it. We have a very tumultuous relationship, me and this city. Some days, I think I can’t be more astonished than when I passing through Midtown, at 4 AM alone, from some adventure or misadventure. It doesn’t matter whether I won or lose whatever gambit that I may have trying to bet my happiness on that day. There’s something about the flow of cabs that aren’t sure whether the scant few people gawking are coming and going. It is those times when often I walk slowly, slowing, and gazing at all of the city lights that are permanently blazing in Times Square. And besides me are the lovers and the peddlers/photographers with oversized digital cameras, and their printers instantly creating a print.

Toys R Us aways stands out for me and I think about being a kid, and being amazed the first few times that I saw the Wizard of Oz, and marveled that a movie could go from black and white to technicolor. (And why was it Technicolor, and why are they singing, and why isn’t this girl really, really freaked out?) I am a kid of the 80’s and early 90’s. So her reaction was not as action oriented as I thought it should have been.

See what I just did there? Instead of writing a melancholy and reflect thing about teaching or the experiences I’ve had in the past few months. No, I just decided to write something that really is a lot more of what I want to exhibit and hopefully inspire other people to do. That is, I hope that that which you just read was entertaining somewhat, and that when you have some time perhaps you might take a second to read another posting or take a mini vacation in my head like I sometimes get to do by the notion that I’m still doing whatever it is that I’m walking towards.

Chester Kent

This letter is to serve as a response to a letter to file dated January 17th, 2012.

 

When I began my time at Lean on Me High, the 10th/11th grade English classes were absolutely in disarray.  School support staff, and the students informed me that they had several teachers during the year, two somewhat long term, and several ATR’s. Despite the lack of any formal structure or objectives, I assumed role of lead teacher for several weeks until MJ arrived as their formal appointed English teacher, and I could finally concentrate on learning the subject matter and concepts of Forensic Science and then teach it, to the two sections that I would assume lead teacher in.( A moment of note here applies as well, as in that subject, and classroom, I too was thrown into a situation where students had basically wasted a marking period.)At that time, I had been informed that two of the classes were to be ICT/CTT classes, which came as a shock because for the duration of the time I served as the students teachers, I worked alone.  After handing over the classroom to MJ, I often times worked with her  in the 5th and 8th period classes. The 5th period class became more of a regular mainstay because the 5th period class was problematic, in more than one way.  In the subsequent paragraphs, I will detail a few.

The most major problem with 5th period was the impossible task of teaching a class with 44 students (see attachment.)  Room 409 does not have adequate space for that many bodies.  Sometimes we didn’t have enough chairs. Other times, classroom management was quite frankly impossible;  circulating the room was nearly impossible, and being attentive to the needs of the various groupings that I had planned for the students was  near impossible, and any sort of group work for the students often times broke out into deafening proportions, even when it was good talk.  The arrangement of tables was not mine or Ms. Jones to define as we were only in that room for one period of the day.  Clearly, that decision would be for Ms. Santana, as we all acknowledge that to be her classroom.

The second problem with period 5 was the high concentration of serviced students.  I had not been informed of which students had any IEP’s.  At the original roster of 44 students, there were at least 21 students receiving services.  As it were the array of IEP’s or serviced students ranged from ELL students to some students with IEP’s clearly stated that they were defiant to authority.

Finally, the only time that MJ and I shared in common were during Professional Development or during the classes we shared together.  Even when we both stayed late after school, there would be no time for common planning, and even if there had been, it would be futile, as I would provide coverage for teachers who were out. Inside the classroom, this also became something tough for the children students to comprehend as often times, two strong individuals were weakened because a lack of unified  direction.  The lessons I prepared, which I gave to MJ with annotated points, and reference materials often were not reviewed, and rarely would MJ take the lead for a multitude of reasons that I can not speak to.  In any event,

When things somewhat become consistent, I and MJ etched out a plan. The only way to achieve a more functional, and meaningful environment was to lessen the number ofI asked AP Razor if I could locate a classroom not being utilized would it be ok.  Had I known that the AP’s had different tasks under their purview, I would have also sought out Ms. Cleo’s permission or assistance.  However, with the chain of events as they were, being such that with Mr. Razor’ s oral approval, and having identified room 413 as available, a plan was devised to separate the students into two groupings based on what we found to be our strong points in instruction.  While the students under my charge receiving instruction in lessons designed primarily focused on literature and creative writing based lessons, and Ms. Jones focusing more on grammar, and shorter literature pieces.  At some unidentified point, we would rotate groups, if were felt that it would be beneficial to the students.  Thus, I spent a few days looking at the list of students, and with Ms. Jones approval or requests for students, the groupings were cemented.  The matrix of students would include all levels of students.  To reiterate, each grouping would have similar numbers of mainstreamed and IEP/serviced students.

In room 413, my students were put through their paces, with an intensive unit I had crafted about the perception of self in society.  Students under my charge were given challenging, and socially relevant readings and assignments that allowed them to explore themselves.  In the smaller setting, the 17 or 18 students were given the chance to read aloud, ask meaningful questions; they could really roll back their sleeves and dig into the materials.  Every student was included. 

Thus the direction to unify the groupings was both disappointing, and quite frankly impossible to plan considering the pacing of each unite grouping.

At the meeting of ICT teachers (which did not include teachers of all classes that should receive ICT instruction,) I voiced concerns about class size and room to instruct, lack of common planning, lack of adequate teaching materials, and access to the files detailing what the student”s IEP explicitly were.  After Ms.  Morgan offered suggestions as to models of Co-Teaching,  I again voiced concerns regarding the level of planning that the model of Alternate Teaching would take, considering mine and Ms. Jones’s schedule, but this again was unanswered.  After the meeting of ICT teachers, we attempted two instances of unifying the classes, and each time was an utter disaster.  I acknowledge that on these two occasions there was a disappointing lack of instruction, and the students pleaded with Ms. Jones, and I to separate the groupings.

During this time, I was finally granted access to the IEP folders in Ms. Special Special Ed’s office, and discovered information that was left me in a quixitic situation; several of the students IEP’s state explicitly services that would simply not be possible in the unified class.  While they may be recommended for ICT services, their IEP’s directly state that large classroom settings such as the one that would occur in room 409 would be completely damaging to their development and goals.  Also, until Ms. Jones was apprised of the specific needs of the IEP/serviced students and what differentiations and adaptions would be needed to lessons (which had not even been discussed nor mutually planned out) well joining the classes would be harmful to all students, gen-ed and disabled alike.

Furthermore in regards to Commissioner of Education’s 200.6 Continuum of Services, it is declared that in an ICT the number of students with disabilities should not be more than 40% of the classroom or  at a maximum limit of 12, or in extreme cases, 13 if granted state notice and approval.  The number of students on the original class roster totaled 20, and never dropped below 15 for the entire semester.   In this situation, there was not a clearly defined “right” answer.

That is to say, on one hand, It would have been much easier and less of a  risk to my career to rejoin the groups and do my best to avoid the deplorable situation that lead to the split.  While on the other, I could continue the less obtrusive approach of instructing students while continuing to search for a method of instruction that would best service all the students in the classroom.  While I would have still searched for viable options to instruct students in the unified classroom, I fear that by the time I found one, the damage may have been done.  As it stands, the past four days in room 409 have been a nightmare for everyone involved (as I feared it would.)  Despite requests for MJ’s lesson plan,ideas, concepts or time, I’ve to date received none.  I would have designed something but  as I assumed that as the Gen-Ed English teacher that she would take point.

Given the directions received and the level of support I received, I decided to choose the that allowed me to create a learning environment that provided meaningful and positive impacts on student learning  This was not a decision made to be oppositional or defiant.  It was not a decision made without angst or careful personal evaluation.  Had I received more assistance in strategies that could feasibly allow me to follow instructions by my supervisors, and effectively achieve the best educationally fostering space of the students in my charge, I would have chose differently.

Lean on Me (Part II)

Lean on Me (Part II)

We actually need Joe Clark.

I’ve spent most of the weekend. Actually, every night since Wednesday in abject (direct) terror that the only other person who was in a similar boat as me wouldn’t quit.

But Saturday, I received an email that casually just cemented he wasn’t coming back, even though the email didn’t say it.
You see, Bobby was also a sub. filling in for an ATR and Vacancy. His subject was Social Studies. Global, and American Gov. He created folders for the kids, which he had to push on this ridiculous cart, but as I did, he reminded the kids “I am here. I see how you feel. Use me to your best advantage.” And from some kids he got results. And from others he got props.
But I don’t think there was much contact with the administration. And he too was left mystified when pay day came and we didn’t get paid.
But Bob did it. He did even more than me. He stayed behind for hours pouring over work, and really living the dream.

Being low man on the pole, and having a co-teacher in one class (who technically has more rights in that class, since its inclusion and she has the majority of kids) I was pulled out to cover his classes, plus my own. In one day I taught 4 different subjects, in 4 different rooms.
The 5th class was in a subject that I teach earlier in the day but deserves its own segue and post.

Literally, this year is too much. I off the top of my head made plans up for Bob’s classes, and tried to get the kids to do it. Many of the kids were kids I have in other classes, and so they were sort of like “Really, K? Really. Again?” And I said the same thing myself. But I noticed a trend….Bob’s classes were generally 30% smaller than mine. I got kind of jealous. Except for the cart it wasn’t much of a hassle at all. It was a a sweet deal. It wasn’t the monkey’s paw that I had been sold.

And yet, despite seeing more of me, I can totally see why some of the kids may think that I am a talentless hack. Instruction is rarely accomplished in 2 of the sections where there are more than 36 kids. There’s the 2 sections where I self admittedly do not understand what is going on in those classes. Or know what to do, and I have been vocal in trying to find someone, AP, UTF Rep, Science teachers, Strangers on the Subway, ANYONE to let me know

Bringing in my home computer is not an option. Betsy might set my apartment on fire the next time I restart. It is what it is. Yet, despite asking for access to technology in the building that could allow me to possible work out some of the lessons I’ve simulated in my head, or having a computer in the school that is actually able to show a show on PBS without PBS suggesting we go to NPR. You know, National Public Radio. Which in that case, the speakers that I BOUGHT ON MY OWN AND TRUCK IN MY BOOKBAG EVERY STEP I TAKE. No help. No follow through on direct things I’ve asked about.

Today I haven’t eaten and I don’t have an appetite. And I haven’t pulled together the things I imagine because yeah I’m stressing out.

So Exposition of this over, next time….I’ll tell you about “THOSE TWO.”

Be well.

[Chester Kent.]

march wrap up

The phrase says “beware the Ides of March” but really March was what I should have been wary of. Despite the images and ideas of Green, growth and hope- I found myself thwarted by the children I had eagerly dressed myself for in the AM’s.

My problem in the past month was not situated to just one location and or with one, singular population of schoolchild. Meaning I didn’t just interface with just high schoolers or just middle schoolers. I didn’t just monitor sections of regular,  CTT, inclusion and/or self-contained classes exclusively. Nor had I been just situated in just one borough.

Yet, the amount of attitude or the things that came out of these kids mouths were, well, in their own vernacular, “OFF THE HOOK” or my personal favorite “O.D!!!!!!”. Friday, I probably had been cursed at more times than metro buses that are missed, stop signs that exist or maybe even those yellow cheese schoolbusses with their flashers out (when all you want to do is get home.) However, the main difference is that all the anger and disrespect sent towards me was completely uncalled for.
In the past week alone, an 8th grade girl at a middle school decided to brand me a “rapist” because I pestered her about having her cellphone out in gym class.  Yeah.  She did.  Yes.  Seriously.  Other kids jumped on that disrespect train, and it caught me off guard. I kind of wanted to cry but I had other classes to make it through.   Overall, the school day was great but the rapist cloud hung over my head.  I would return to that same school aon Friday afternoon, and my fingers would be crossed hoping that all that jazz would be forgotten.  But then she walked in third period.

Two statements were made from her.  One  of her statements utilized that term towards me and I had to throw her out.  Which was a struggle as it was.  She fought with every ounce of her strength that she could muster to disrespect me and claim the room as her throne.  Yet, I refused to engage her.  I could explain my reasoning behind it but as I told her- “for the next forty minutes I am your guest teacher; Not your actually teacher. They called in. And as such I have my own set of rules which may or may not be the same Z your regular teacher’s. But they are in line with the board of education.”
However I continued by saying “I am an adult And your teacher and you will leave this room. An you will not address me in your manner of choosing. But you will leave this room.”
And she didnt and so I had school safety called to remove her from class.

Un-April Fool’s Day

Returning back to the school I went to on Wednesday.  Listing classifies it as “Special Education” – My favorite….ha.  Wednesday wasn’t that horrible, so I’m going to try to give today and honest shot. Let’s see how it goes. Not really sure what to do with Special Education kids when there aren’t any notes to tell me exactly what subject or classification of special ed it is.

I know it sounds like rambling, but as long as I don’t end up having to deal with 2 of the little “Bankers” (note, my use of ‘bankers’ is a substitute for another word, I digress.)  These “bankers” were unnecessarily unruly thus I had to squash their attitudes and put them into their places in  on Wednesday.  Their places being  child to my adult, and student to my teacher, iu the whole child-adult, and student-teacher dynamic.  One banker referred to me as a rapist, and the other who threw a football at my head.

The rapist comment came as a result about me pestering her to put her cellphone away.  I could see how I was being annoying, considering I was in fact being annoying in response to being annoyed that she clearly violated school policy and my own personal policy about cellphones in school.  Her response warranted me having her thrown out of class.  I also responded in a firm, masculine and clearly not pleased tone to any of the kids who dared even  tried to spark that incident again.

The football banker.  Not even worth getting into. Or rather it would infuriate me even more than thinking about being called a rapist.

I have no issue throttling both of them today.   Let’s hope I don’t have to.

It’s a late start…8:50-3:50….Ugh.  I hope it’s not really til 3:50. Anyway, I’m going to pick out something nice to wear on this cold April morning.

-Chester Kent