Taking on this program was probably the hardest thing I've done in my life. Harder than gutting homes in New Orleans after Katrina. Harder than trekking the 32 miles of the Inca trail in the rain. Hard. Feeling as though I've been under the poison pen of Professor Umbridge, this last semester has given me more opportunities to spiritually grow and learn in the art of, to quote Kenny Rogers, "knowing when to hold them,and knowing when to fold them".
One of my 7th grade students, Cary, asked me last term what it was like to be a student AND a student teacher. I had to think about that. "Well, Cary", I began, "I've been writing a lot about what types of learners students are. I never thought about that when I was your age. And you know what? I've come to the conclusion that I'm no different than you. I don't want to do my homework. I have anxieties that I'm going to fail. I'm excited when I'm in the classroom. I dig my heels in." Cary looked back at me and said "I know what you mean."
Before I get caught for not "monitoring student progress", I want to tell all of my readers how much I love you. Thank you for your support and kindness and for sticking with me.
P.S. Two more things: I am happily mired in Macbeth with my 10th Grade English students.That has been really fun. I told them that I had to read the Scottish play in 10th grade as well, and all I remember of the experience was that we sat in a circle and read it aloud. I might have written a paper. After it was over, I told one of my favorite high school teachers, Mr. Puchalsky, that I would probably never read Shakespeare again. I didn't have time for these old playwrights when there were so many good 20th century writers to sink my teeth into. Oh, the words of a precocious fifteen year old!! Now that we are at the crux of Act III, the students are sinking their teeth into it. It also gives me a chance to teach adaptation, and making critical decisions with presentation of text. But you don't want to read about all of this academic learning theory and strategy I have to employ, then write about and properly cite.
The second thing I wanted to tell you was that I passed my PACT with flying colors. This is essentially a 35 page paper and about ten minutes of key video teaching moments in which I defend my ability as a teacher. It is an essential component of obtaining my credential and license to teach. It took me all of my spring break to complete. And Sally (my mother) can tell you that it was not without tears. As soon as May 31st gets here, I will be able to start looking for work.
In the meantime, from the trenches of the Dennis-Yarmouth High School Library -I send you love and joy and dreams and counter to the words of Macbeth, stars to light your fires....
|Two of my colleagues emailed me this from graduation!|
|Both Brooke and Chelsea have been a HUGE part of getting me through this last term. Way to go gals!|