∆ Jackson

Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap

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…Or, Kids Really DO Say the Darndest Things! I’ve been creating this lovely little collection over the past few months.  Mostly, it is my students making fun of me. : ) I know I haven’t had one in a while but, it’s a nice lighthearted change of pace from my sometimes heavy posts.  Post about…

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Last year nearly 30 students earned failing grades in my class.  And they all failed Physical Science and will need to retake it in order to graduate.  Some of them are in my classes again this year.  Most of them are doing better.  I have watched closely and I don’t think they are doing better…

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Nov 03 2013

The Legend of October

In the teacher-world there is saying that October is the worst month.  You’re just getting out of that “honey-mooning” phase, it’s the beginning of a new term, kids are restless, teachers are tired, and let’s face it: October is just plain LONG and meanwhile Thanksgiving and Christmas still seem a world away. So is it…

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Sep 06 2013

Picking up Paper Clips.

This past week (although short) was crazy in Room 116.  We are becoming designers and engineers and this week my students were designing and building their very own paper air planes. Basically, I spent the week frantically shuffling from group to group helping them interpret their research articles, asking them to revise their hypothesis over…

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May 02 2013

Discouraged.

This week I was highly disappointed in my students.  And of course, Teach for America has trained me to think this is my fault and I have not done enough.  I didn’t build strong enough relationships, I did not create a classroom vision my students bought into, my classroom culture was not strong enough, I…

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Apr 12 2013

The State of My Classroom…

…is currently a mess. But that’s okay!  Because we made solar ovens this week to wrap up our electricity unit.  So there are little scraps of foil and aluminum foil and tape scattered on the floor and under desks and strange foil-covered pizza boxes are covering all available desks and flat spaces. It is so…

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So far, it has been a good week back to school from Spring Break. We started the unit on electricity in Physical Science, which I think students are enjoying it because it is so relevant.  And my Physics students have had some really great attitudes lately, which just makes class so much more pleasant. {SIDE…

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I sent Nick this text message Tuesday afternoon: “My 4A block was the wooooooorst today.  I nearly hit someone with a stapler.  But I didn’t.  So the good news is I’m still employed.” And then when I returned to school on Wednesday morning to a 1B block that was almost as terrible as my 4A,…

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So, driving home from work today I had a really sad realization. With the exception of a few of my students, I realized today that nearly none of my students will be ready for college when they graduate high school. And I say this not because I don’t believe in my students, but because even…

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Jan 24 2013

What causes misbehavior?

Yesterday, during my planning block, they announced for a list of students to report to the library.  As they went through the names, several teachers commented that the students on the list were some of their worst behaved students. Later, during my next two blocks, there were several of my own students pulled out of…

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Dec 05 2012

Sunshine on a cloudy day

One of my students.  Comes into third block everyday.  Doesn’t look at me.  Doesn’t acknowledge me.  Doesn’t say a word.  Puts his head down.  Refuses to work or sit up or participate or open his eyes for the next 90 minutes.   And today….. he came in.  Gave me a high five (I mean a…

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Nov 28 2012

Happy Days.

Two good days in a row, so I just had to let you all know. (That rhymed) But yesterday all my  classes were so good!  3B even walked TO lunch quietly.   Back from lunch is a different story and they’ve now lost bathroom privileges, but that was the only bad part of the day.  My…

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First.  Parent teacher conferences.  To quote one teacher in my hall, “It’s like Christmas!” Seriously, though.  You should be required to meet your student’s teachers before your child is allowed to attend school.  It’s such a breath of fresh air to hear that, yes, of course this student’s mother/father/auntie/grandmother/etc want him/her to do well!  And…

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Oct 15 2012

Trying hard to stay positive.

When students break your stapler, loose your example project, leave their homework on their desks, talk incessantly, don’t care about class points, take over an hour to shut up and take notes, and ignore every request you make….. at least there are:three students who stay after for extra help, a friend to fix your stapler,…

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Oct 12 2012

Finally…. [sorry about that]

I know, I know….I haven’t posted since the hurricane. For me, when the going gets tough, the tough get…busy…too busy to blog in fact.  Or too tired.  But ANYWAY…here I am.  With a full (and by full I mean extremely shortened due to the huge amount of time that has passed since I last posted)…

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Aug 11 2012

First Day Happiness

I love my kids.  They are awesome.  And I am so excited for this year. We had an excellent first day together (although only 4/7, 7/25, and 14/27 of my students were here today).  Everything went smoothly, the students were well behaved, and we had a nice time introducing ourselves to each other.  Reading the…

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Jul 09 2012

Highlight of my week.

File this under AWESOME: I was talking with a few of my students today as we waited for the others to get back from the bathroom so we could go to lunch and I asked about their weekends, etc.  I asked them if they were excited for summer school to be finished or sad.  And…

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