What are the value of one’s services they provide every day? I often find myself questioning this on days like today. Days when The Boss asks me if I should stay home and get more rest. My body screams “YES!!!!!!” Everything else in me says something else.
I must admit, compared to other school districts in the area I live in, I am well compensated. But, in general, teachers are not compensated to the level they should be. Teachers provide services not only during the school day, but sometimes at all times of the day and night, year ’round.
I’m writing a little bit here and there as I go during this day and it’s a different picture as I have different classes cycle through my room. Right now I’m getting everyone started on a virtual online stock market. Some classes are taking the competition end of this very seriously. Others, like the one in my room right now, aren’t really processing the importance of learning about the stock market. I understand why the difference is there, but it’s frustrating. It makes me feel like there is less of a value of the services I’m providing in teaching.
I’m currently sitting back and watching my current class try to get the hang of how to purchase stocks and learning how to figure out what stocks are good to purchase. I find it very telling about my students to see how they handle this process.
Now I have my last class of the day. Once a week, the entire school is supposed to hold a “classroom meeting.” It’s part of the school’s anti-bullying program. Well, the past few weeks we’ve had assigned topics. Personally, I hate those. It’s like forcing a pill down a dog’s throat without wrapping it in cheese. These kids don’t want to talk about these assigned topics because they find them to be stupid. I see these assigned topics as just driving a disconnect between the kids and the staff when these meetings are supposed to create connections.
Today was easier. Technically, we had a topic this week. But thanks to a 5-week “6-weeks,” no one thought about that. Like little lemmings, they stayed with the “open topic.” So, just like traffic in downtown Dallas, I stayed with the flow. Some of the kids wanted to talk about last night’s football game. Then we talked about the high school football team. We talked about the volleyball teams and the tennis team. Some of the kids still didn’t feel like talking. However, more of them were engaged.
Now they’re typing like good little minions (hey, it is a keyboarding class).
Do you remember your parents ever saying to you that you can never pay them a big enough amount of money for the work they do in raising you?
I remember that. I now understand it, too.
Used to, kids were sent to school to learn. Then they were sent home, where they were raised. Teachers were paid to teach, not to become parent to 100+ children a day.
Now the salaries are the same. Teachers are paid to teach, but they are also required to be parents, too. This all while the parents, who sometimes are waaaay more involved than before, still in the end give a shit less.
Teacher: “Little Johnny hit some kid in the head with a bat.”
Principal: “Call their parents.”
Teacher (on phone): “Mr. So-and-So, your son hit another kid in the head with a bat.”
Mr. So-and-So: “Alright, thank you for informing me. I’ll take care of it.”
Little Johnny (after he gets home): “So, I guess you talked to the teacher?”
Mr. So-and-So: “Yes. Get your jacket. We are going for some ice cream.”
I read an article during my lunch today called “Are We Raising a Generation of Nincompoops?”
Here is a link to the full story if you want to read it.
But basically the article raised the question of “Are we raising our children now to never become independent?”
I think that is a perfectly valid question. Everything I teach in my classroom is with one goal in mind: to make them become more independent. What’s the key? Knowledge. Knowledge of how everything works. Knowledge is power. Some of these kids don’t have the power. Some of them never will.
Can they? YES!!! They all have the ability to learn these things. In knowing, they have the power and ability to make decisions. However, some of these kids make the decision to be lazy and never expand their knowledge. For my sake, the sake of my family, and the sake of the world, I hope that if they never put in the effort to “get it,” that they never get out of this BFE town and pollute the rest of the world.
The Boss always says that we should adopt the system that China uses. If they can’t hack it in school (whether they refuse to or don’t have the ability to), we pull them out of school, give them a job like being a street sweeper, and actually give the students who care a chance to not only succeed, but to excel.