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Black Voices. Latino Voices. Asian Voices. HuffPost Personal. Special Projects. Pride Impact: Project Zero. Impact: This New World. Listen to America. From Our Partners. Follow us. She grew on him like she was a colony of E. It's so easy to become discouraged about teaching. Especially as we talk about the problems we are facing. I agree with you.. I have tried to change my attitude when I come up with issues that do not seem fair or right. Positive and negative attitudes are contagious.
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I would like to be remembered as someone that encouraged students and my fellow team mates instead of someone that discouraged them. I can obviously see that you are a passion driven teacher. Tiffany Laskowski "There is nothing so unequal as the equal treatment of unequals". Teaching is climbing a mountain. We are given tools to help us along the way.
We are told that these tools will guarantee our success. However, these tools don't get everyone to the top of the mountain, and sometimes they break. When this happens we are not sure of what to do. Our creativity has been narrowed. These metaphors that I have listed here describe my teaching and practices best. Within my own personal landscape the one that I most relate to is the first metaphor. I always seem to have a plan but whether it is the students, colleagues, or administrators always seem to change what I originally thought I would do.
The assumption in my second metaphor is that I would rather have my students learn a skill then say that they know a skill, learning to me means that they put forth effort in trying to understand what they needed to know to be successful. This metaphor also means to me that students had a goal and that they were able to achieve it with the outcome being that they learned.
The last metaphor has to be my favorite because it applies through out my landscape as an educator. There are many instances that I can recall where I have spoken to my students about the choices that they make in school will affect their desired outcome. The good choices seem to be when school is "fun", and the bad choices are when school is "scary", but enough good choices will let you finish the ride until graduation.
I can very much relate to the first metaphor you listed: "Teaching is like a road trip; you have a mapped out course, but sometimes you get a flat to change your plans. How can any teacher predict how long it will take to teach a certain concept and then, most importantly, for the students to learn that concept? Yet at the same time, teachers are under so much pressure to cover all the standards before testing time.
In my experience, the students learn most when I take THEIR needs into consideration by allowing extra time for concepts as needed. It really doesn't matter if I can say I taught all the standards if the students didn't learn what they needed to!
Trying to push forward without student mastery of concepts is like trying to drive a car with a flat…. I am having a really hard time thinking of metaphors to describe education, but I think you all have listed several really good ones. Sara, I like that yours are positive. One quality I think every teacher should possess is a positive attitude. Unfortunately, I think many teachers are losing this as a result of all the problems we have been discussing.
I would like to think that my landscape is not a secret place, but one that everyone knows about. If I can be open and honest about what goes on in my classroom, I won't feel like I am facing challenges alone. I can not agree with you more. I used to work at a very negitive school and when I moved I told myself never listen to negitive people or speak negitive because once you do you become that. I like to stay in the postive because when you do so many good things happen. It is the secret. You put out into the world what you want to get back.
I was told in teacher prep classes to avoid the teachers lounge like the plague because all teachers do in there is gripe, gripe, gripe! I LOVE our teachers lounge because of the wonderful teachers at our school. I eat lunch in there every day just to hear the funny, sometimes heartbreaking stories from teachers who LOVE their students! So, I guess that my metaphor not only for teaching but for life is "Life isn't about waiting for the storms to pass but learning to dance in the rain".
Make the most out of what has been given you. Remember you are there to affect those students lives in a positive way. Jk only some days make it seem like that. You give students respect when they don't deserve it. Teachers repeatedly lead their students to learn even when they refuse. I agree that being positive is the best thing to do although it is very difficult. Teachers are surrounded by a lot of influences that make it easy to revert to the negative.
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America wwill not endure without benefit of education -Teaching is like fire and little spark can make a big flame - Education does no tmean teaching people what they do not know. It meand teaching them to behave as they do not behave.
It is a work to be learned by kindness, by watching and warning, by participation and by praise but above all, by example. A postive teacher is a Happy Teacher I find it much better to not listen to the negative comments or you quickly become pulled to the other side. As referenced in the article, I'd say: Bubble-educators tend to be in a bubble—some like to close the door and keep others out.
How can metaphor be used to describe my teaching? I would use: I can lead a horse to water, but I can't make it drink. How can my metaphor be used to describe my professional interactions with teachers: Garage sale—come and pick out what you like, it may be used, slightly or not at all, but you can do what you want with it-you can modify it, toss it or take it as is. Can I identify what assumptions underlie these metaphors?
Sometimes we assume that teachers close the door to keep others out while they don't want the outside distractions or their inside noise to distract others. If educators do not communicate with peers to see if they are willing to provide materials or assistance then the assumptions will remain understood as such. So it is important to spend some time in the faculty lounge like Treisa said and talk to those around you! Your metaphors do a nice job of revealing tensions that are present in schools. I applaud this move away from neutrality and feel that this is a good place to reexamine the tensions that plague the teaching profession.
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Dan Lorte addresses these tensions and how the nature and structure of the school contribute to them in his book Schoolteacher - but still relevant. Communication amongst teachers is limited and as mentioned by several of our other classmates the teachers lounge and the water cooler are commonly places of negative and fairly destructive communication. Procedural practices are often implemented such as PLCs in an effort to increase dialogue; however, the procedural approach to this progressive idea undermines its purpose entirely.
I am constantly struggling with this idea of how we can increase true dialogue in teaching communities in order to better our schools. I am glad someone feels the same way I do! You can lead a horse to water but you can't make it drink! These are metaphors I have come across during the duration of my learning, teaching, and schooling.
There are vast amounts of metaphors I've heard and continue to hear, however my mind tends to lose track, and the metaphors listed above have been the ones I remeber, strangely.