Wednesday, January 28, 2009

we will be Fatherless

My new mantra is "live for the NOW" but I could not help wondering about the future. I am talking about the future of our department, coping with the change for next year. It's now a common knowledge in our department that our “father” will be retiring.

The economy is to blame on this untimely decision. The state is pretty much showing the “older workers” the door! It does not matter that these employees are experts in their field or not. We will surely miss them.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

ttitlt intro

I am posting my "ttitlt" every week or as much as I can take time to ponder the little things I learn from students. As you may probably know, I teach in a city where tough kids reside and find comfort in their own little ways. Some people thinks that I am insane for doing so, but I believe in the goodness of my students hearts...

By the way, ttitlt means "to teach is to learn twice!"

I also learn from them!

Friday, January 23, 2009

ttitlt #1

Today is fantastic friday but not so fantastic for student a who came in crying because her boyfriend was "jumped on" by some students they don't know. Just imagine how a teenager would rant and rave then multiply that by 10times - that's what I had for my first block intro. She would not listen when I asked her to leave to see someone "to vent on" and she just went on firing "f bombs" and slangs. With my little patience and a nice tone of voice... I reminded everyone, not really directly talking to her (since I don't want anymore of her anger! I must be scared .... :) that "I understand that we can get upset and so aggravated sometimes (that it's not even funny!); but that does not give us any reason to be r-u-d-e!"

By the way, I like spelling some of the bad words they say to make a point that I really DISLIKE (instead of h-a-t-e) saying it, that I have a choice to NOT say it, and that it makes me cranky... they are starting to be aware of the words that will make my day good...

That student of mine started to cool off and went on with her assignments without any problems. She gave me a high five on her way out saying "You're a gangsta, miss!" I hope that means something good. I have to make sure I ask her what it means on monday.


Wednesday, January 21, 2009

students' inaugural paper

I am a little disappointed with what my students show me for their paper on the 44th president's inaugural address (that is related to math or anything they can associate with math). I am not sure if it's the defiance among teenagers or they just don't know how to write.

Only half of them handed in their work. Others said one night is "way too tight", some said that they cannot find anything to write about math. The winning excuse was "If it's geography or social studies, or english, I will not have a problem writing even 4 pages! I just can't find math in the speech!"

I guess, they are actually looking for the word "math" in the speech... no, I'd like to call it defiance.

For the students who did their work and see the math in it, I am proud of you guys!


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Classes Re - scheduled

Just for today, our principal re-scheduled our daily class schedule so we can accommodate all students to watch history in the making - he inauguration of the first African-American president Barrack H. Obama.

With the special schedule, I end up with an empty room and a tv all to myself! I must be lucky today! I sat in my desk and taped the speech. I thought that President Obama must be too nervous to take on the worst economy that both he and the Chief Justice Roberts had some flubs back and forth. They both are first-timers, so let's give it to them...

What struck me was his statement, "Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America." I just can't wait to see it happens. I am hopeful it will happen in the near future and that he will do good as a president, leader, and father.

For my students, I expect they will live up to my challenge - I need that paper tomorrow. tfr

Monday, January 19, 2009

suicide among teens

Our school is devastated at a loss of a person who chose to end his life. It's a terrible loss for his family, his friends, his community, and our school. It's sad to think that it can be anyone... I saw him in the hallway the recently ~ he seemed to be okay... His one of the students who would always say "hi" or greet you "good morning" and ask how do you do... with a smile on his face. Before you know it, he's not able to do such a thing... It's so sudden, so abrupt.

One of his friends said that they were outside his house hanging around afterschool the day he ended it. He said he'll catch them later, he needs to go take a shower. . . he never came back out... he never will...

I could not imagine what would it be to be his friends... should I feel guilty? Should I feel mad and hopeless? They only 15 and life change in a way they're not ready for...

In my opinion, it does not help that our dp is really magnifying the whole thing. I am just afraid that kids who need "attention" realize that maybe this is the attention they need and will follow suit. I hope that will not happen.

Click [here] and [here] to learn more about suicide among teens.


Tuesday, January 6, 2009

paper piles

My desk is so infested with student works and such that I really need to stay late one afternoon and get all my correcting done. I stayed a good hour each day this week but I had students asking for help or making up work that I was not able to do any of the tasks to my satisfaction.

Tomorrow is another day. . . Wish me luck! tfr

Friday, January 2, 2009

It's Jan 5, 09 - - - soon!

Before you know it, I will be in front of my students teaching them lessons (in class and in life ~hopefully). I hope that they had great Christmas break as I did. I hope that they find shelter in their parents/guardians' arm.

I guess, I will have to see them all again Monday.

Have a great 2009 ahead! Stay in school!