intrapersonalgreenspun.com : LUSENET : M.Ed. Cohort II : One Thread
Joanne, you did a great job presenting last week. Great ideas to use with second graders! When we're finished with all this MAT testing I'd like to try them, I'll let you know how it goes. Again, cohort memebers another night filled with insight and fun. Thanks! Reading about intrapersonal intelligence I couldn't help but feel good about being a teacher and feel good about teaching at Lincoln Park School. With our population at Lincoln I feel you have to make a conscience effort to address intrapersonal qualities in kids. I really believe that for many of our kids, probably the majority, school is the best part of their day. I feel personally I am very aware of this and do what I can to nuture every one of my students. Our school also does a good job enhancing self esteem in kids. We have a school wide program called Character Counts. Some of you might be familiar with it. I'll share it with you Thursday. It will only take a few minutes. See you Thursday. Sandy Pearson
-- Anonymous, April 15, 1999
What an interesting session we had! Not what any of us expected. The video certainly led us in a differenct direction and caused us to discuss many thought on multicultural issues. The discussion was interesting and then it was frustrating. I continue to wonder how I am supposed to make sure all the cultures are represented and acknowledged in my classroom, how to incorporate activities for students to use their multiple intelligences, how to include a variety of methods to address learning styles, how to provide for the special needs students while offering enrichment activities for the gifted and talented students--all in the course of a high school 50-minute class period. I wonder how many people outside of teaching realize the enormity of topics/issues/concerns that we teachers deal with. Whew! I sure got that "off my chest," didn't I??
On a happy note: Thank you, Gayle, for the handout on the Circle and the butterfly story! Enjoyed it. And Cathy,THANKS A LOT for the extrovert/introvert test. I'm still trying to get rid of the lemon cotton swab taste in my mouth! Not really! Sure is interesting to see how simple tests are supposed to determine a characteristic. But darn it, it seemed to have done its work!
Looking forward to Thursday again!
-- Anonymous, April 17, 1999
I thought Thursday's night discussion was very interesting. When I meet my students for the first time, I don't know what they are like and whether I have anything in common with them. If there was a student who was Asian-American, I might be able to relate to them more on a cultural level, but that may be the only thing we have in common. I agree more teachers of color are needed in the education field. They could make a big difference in the lives of students of all colors. But I still think any teacher can find some common ground with all of their students. If you take an interest in them as a person, you can learn a lot from them that you wouldn't be able to by just looking at them. I know many teachers who are white that have made a real connection with students who are of a minority race. They have shown interest in the students and their interests and have learned they share a lot in common.
After all is said and done, we are adults and the students are kids and we need to remember what it is like to be a kid. Then we will be able to communicate and really get to know the kid and what makes them unique. Even if we don't feel we have anything in common with them, we were all kids once.
-- Anonymous, April 18, 1999
As I think about last week's discussion after watching the video I began to think more about how students need to connect to their teachers in some way to make them feel part of the learning environment in the classroom. For some children it is similar interests, family backgroud, love of reading, etc....Teachers try to find things that will make a child connect to them and use that to build a positive relationship. Then when there is difficulty there is something to use to bring them together to solve the problem. But for those who feel so different due to cultural issues , it is harder to establish a connection. Without a connection, a teacher cannot be as effective and will have trouble reaching a child during difficult times. Using multiple intelligences is one way to try to connect to students. Also becoming more aware of cultural issues will open doors for teachers who teach minorities when they are not of that culture. Accepting one's limitations and experiences and seeking help with understanding those of different cultures is a starting point.
-- Anonymous, April 18, 1999
I agree with what Rebecca mentioned. It is very hard to be a teacher nowadays. Teachers are not only dealing with all the issues that Rebecca mentioned, but also with the different personal issues that every student brings into the classroom. American society is not only going through racial changes, but also through big social changes. For instance, the role of the family has changed. Sometimes I wonder if schools are taking responsibilities away from parents, not because they necessarily want to; but it seems to me that many of today's families are not doing their job. The bottom line is that parents are not taking the responsibility to raise their kids and this huge job is being dumped in the schools. Schools and teachers are often blamed for the students' failures when I think students' failures have more to do with family life than anything else. Of course schools and teachers play an important part in the life of a child but nothing will ever replace the love, nurturing and care that the child needs to find at home in order to be successful in school.
-- Anonymous, April 19, 1999
I too feel overwhelmed some days with all the things teachers are supposed to know and do. I have seen a dramatic increase in the needs of children and families in early childhood programs. I have talked to many teachers about this and I have heard them all say that they too feel the needs have increased. I think what others have said is really true. Schools and teachers are being asked to replace much of what family use to be to children and even though we strive to be caring and compasionate with our students we can not be their family. That is one of my struggles. Doing the best I can do but then realizing that I can not fix it all. I am only one piece in the puzzle of the child's life. Hopefully a postive piece but still only one piece.
-- Anonymous, April 20, 1999
As I woke up this morning, my first thoughts were for the students and their families at Columbine school in Denver. I feel the hurt they have, and can't really express it in words. I prayed for the students and their families. I don't necessarily agree with Loly's statement about parents not taking responsibility for raising their children and blaming schools for their students failure. I can look at several families with two parents, my family included, whose children are still having great difficulty in school and are still making bad choices. I don't see this as the parents are to blame nor do I see this as necessarily that the school is to blame. The families that I'm thinking of do provide love and care for their children. Yes, I know that not all homes are like that. But that is what makes it even more frustrating for me as a parent with a teenager making bad choices. He really has chosen to learn the hard way. I can look at another family, where the parents are into "partying" and yet their son is excelling and participating in many school activities. How does that happen? Success in school still lies with the student. WE as teachers need to work with patrents to lead the students toward that success. As I think about the video, and our cohort, I will share with you that it has not been an all "feel good" experience for me. I feel the experience with Jackie has been hard to deal with. Also, my research and the discussions from that have been too close and have brought up many painful memories.
-- Anonymous, April 21, 1999