Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Real World Curriculum, Epilogue

So fast forward to this moring while I wait for my students to arrive.
The AP that i like the most came up to me and said:

"What are you trying to do to me, Ms. C? How can I approve you going to the Gap? Write up you're going to Rochefeller Center to learn the history of the tree, don't tell me you're going shopping."

So I wrote up some bogus, made-up field trip, and it was approved. And more importantly, I l learned two things during this interesting situation:

1. You can lie to your administrators in order to look good, as long as they know you are lying.

2. Administrators automatically assume the worst of teachers, like they plan their fieldtrips to go shopping.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Real World Curriculum

I’ve been irritated lately at work, and my students haven’t been the cause.

Supposedly there have been cutbacks at my school, as of late…and my school has put the kibosh on fieldtrips. Let me remind you that last year the sky was the limit and I was always reimbursed for not only trip costs, but lunches for the students as well.

I took a couple deep breaths, and decided that I could still take my kids out on educational trips sans cash. My first creative idea spawned an entirely new unit of study I cooked up: job skills. This mixed hygiene health, economics, and ELA and the unit of study would include resume building, how to dress and act on a job interview, how to fill out a job application and mock interviews for the students. The culmination would be a trip into the real world and to an open interview day at Old Navy where students could fill out applications. The students and parents were behind me in this, and I felt it was really useful to teach real-world application for academic skills.

Apparently I was wrong as my fieldtrip proposal was rejected. The reason? “Curriculum doesn’t cover this” was what my assistant principal wrote on my proposal. This confused me, because I tell my kids everyday that we come to school in order to be ready for the real world. I guess the real world and gainful employment isn’t part of my school’s curriculum.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Good for a Laugh

I don't know about other cities, but New York makes teachers have mandatory professional developments days on Election Day. A tried and true tradition that bores and annoyed thousands of educators each year in November. Our school's union rep stated our feelings very succinctly with this joke:

A venerable teacher passes away and meets St. Peter at the pearly gates of heaven. St. Peter leads the teacher through a poor looking neighborhood with small, run-down houses. “Is the is where teachers go when they die?” asked the teacher.

“No,” St. Peter said, “This is where lawyers go.” They continued walking and came to a community of middle class homes in mediocre repair.

“Is this where teachers go when they die?” the educator inquired again.

“No, this is for the doctors,” answered St. Peter. Finally, they arrived at a magnificent mansion within a beautiful grounds. The teacher looked around in amazement at his good fortune, but paused when he noticed that not a single person was to be seen. “Where are all the other teachers?” the instructor asked.

“Oh,” said St. Peter, “Today they’re in Hell. It’s aprofessional development day.”

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Is it too late for Halloween?

Maybe it’s a little late for Halloween…but here’s some pumpkin self-portraits my students created!

The cool thing is that if you go to the Union Square farmers market around closing time you can walk away with super-cheap pumpkins. Boyfriend bought me 10 good-sized pumpkins for $15….which is unheard of in the 5 boroughs. The bodega down the street was charging $5 for one similar-sized gourd.
eXTReMe Tracker