I realize that teaching, in the words of Forrest Gump, "Is like a box of chocolate, you never know what you will get." You see the children on a given morning and you don't know if they will be cooperative, mischievous, kind or just plain cruel. You hope for the best and hopefully, you prepare for the worst.
I have students who are convinced that they have the freedom to say whatever they want to say. Some have told me "It's my mouth, I could say whatever I want." Some have said, "It's a free country." Yes, it is your mouth and it is a free country, but where are you getting this very contentious and belligerent attitude from? Some have taken on the position that no one can overcome them. They believe themselves to be totally invincible.
School is just about over. Thank God for all the successes and the obstacles overcome. Today was a very strange day at school. Even though it was very hot on the third floor, no air conditioning, only the 8th graders were allowed outside. The courtyard is huge, yet there were no provisions made to provide relief for the more than hundred and twenty students who had to remain indoors (on the third floor), even during their lunch period. On two separate occasions teachers that ventured out "without authorization" were promptly escorted back indoor.
Perhaps, like many other districts, my district should adopt the policy of dismissing the children on a half-day schedule for the final 7 days of school. Perhaps that would be a lot more practical than to keep students in classrooms that are on average over 90 degrees. The students are very agitated, they feel uncared for and they feel unjustly treated.
My thought for the day, June 25th, 2010. The day that my mom died, 13 years ago and the day that King of Pop, Michael Jackson died, one year ago.
It has been a while since I did a "thought" of the day. Now that I am even busier than ever, I have a "thought." I just started my first day back in school. I saw my students. They are very excited. They want to do everything I want them to do...not! Actually, they are looking forward to the topics that we will cover in Science (6 - 8 th). I hope that I will get some funding to get them some animal (rats, fetal pigs, etc.) specimen so that they could do dissections.
How long will this "blame game" go on in New Jersey? If you run the show and your show "flops" then, just take the responsibility and don't deflect it. You'll learn from it and hopefully not repeat the same mistake again. This amount, $400,000,000 is not just a drop in a bucket...thats a lot of drops, students, and teachers affected. It is inconceivable how such an apparent MISTAKE could be made. I go overboard and review and re-review my New Jersey tax papers just to get a $50 refund. Imagine how intense I would be for $1000 or 10,000 or a $1,000,000! I can't even conceive what precautions I would take to handle an application with $400,000,000 on the line?
The more you listen to the news the more you wonder what is truly "Freedom of speech?" In the era of social media one often wonders the impact that their internet entries and affiliations have on their daily lives. How much is what you do on the internet subject to interpretations?
It looks like the election of Barack Obama has really served as a great illuminator of how deep racism is in America. It is true that it took a very diverse (almost color-blind) group of people to elect the first black President of the United States, however, in all my existence, I have never seen a President more accused of being anti-American or non-American in his OWN country! Former President Bush almost "ran the country to the ground" and not once did I ever here such sentiments applied to him.
A little about Mario Depeine, Sr.
As an educator I get the opportunity to get a small glimpse of how our society is shaping up. Children come into the classroom with all types of perspectives. A lot of the perspectives are a result of their environment. Some of those perspectives reflect the home life or lack of. Some reflect the street life and some just reflect the media that the children are exposed to.
Middle School children are just starting out in life. You see how their characters and personalities are shaping up. Many can be molded or adjusted easily others are a lot more resistant to change depending on their circumstance.
I work in an urban district. While there I see many interesting and at times disheartening things. Hopefully my experiences as an educator can shed some light on what we can do to better prepare our children for the future.