Monday, December 14, 2009


Even though it seems like I forgot about this blog, I really haven't!!

Just busy. Oh, and every time I come up with a topic it's usually when I am falling asleep and then I forget about my genius inspiration!! Like the acrostic I was making about snow.

Over the top

I think that was what I thought. But then I thought that I would prefer snow over 7 degree weather any day. I didn't want to dis snow too much. Because that bone-crushing cold that freezes your nose hairs just is too unpleasant!


I might have previously mentioned that my 7th and 8th grade students are learning about he Holocaust. Last week the 8th graders participated in a very moving lesson that the language arts teacher planned. We put a quote up on the board from Charles Dent:

"We in the United States should be all the more thankful for the freedom and religious tolerance we enjoy. And we should always remember the lessons learned from the Holocaust, in hopes we stay vigilant against such inhumanity now and in the future. "

We passed out post-it notes and had the students write 3 ways they could improve or grow (and to be honest about it). I wrote one too. Then the students got up in front of the class and were able to share something they had written. Some kids apologized to specific peers that they previously made fun of. Others talked about taking responsibility for their actions, etc. You get the idea. My main focus on my post-it is that I that I need to learn how to be more assertive with my peers and colleagues. I am putting it out here so I can hold myself accountable. People who know my IRL know that I intensely dislike confrontation. (Funny that I picked special ed, where I confront children all day long-but that's a topic for a different time). I have recently realized that I also don't want to be disliked by others, so often I don't share something that is in disagreement with others. But that needs to change.

I have already had 2 opportunities at work to improve on this character trait. One involved advocating for my students involving a potentially harmful situation. I wrote an assertive e-mail (with assistance!) and that spurred the powers that be to take action. I will admit to feeling proud of myself about that.

The other situation was simply a difference of opinion with a general ed teacher. Which will always be the case-we are coming from 2 different viewpoints. And in a school setting it is good and puts a balance in the system to have both those viewpoints. But I felt uncomfortable speaking my opinion. But I did it. And I am learning not to care so much about what others think of me. (I should be past this at 32 years old, but I guess there is always room to change)!

It's always nice when the topics I am teaching apply to me as well!

I'll end now-I am rushing off to a professional development (tons of meetings lately).

But remind me to tell you my complaint about the Holocaust museum (I had a meeting there last week).


Rach said...

ooooh, i want to know what you think of the holocaust museum. I'm supposed to be going there soon and I haveheard a lot of mixed reviews.

shalva said...

i was just going to say - i was there for the opening ceremony (elie wiesel spoke fabulously, bill clinton not so much) - and i was seriously underwhelmed with the museum - it looks like so much money was put into it, but there is almost nothing to show for it - it definitely doesn't move you like Yad Va'shem or even the museum in D.C.. i toured it with my survivor grandparents, who were also very unimpressed...curious to hear what your thoughts were...funny that you were there last week, one of the moms from school that i'm friendly with was on a tour there last friday! also, not holocaust-related, i have a book rec. for you, i haven't started it yet but the librarian told me it's gotten really good reviews - The Gate at the Top of the Stairs by Lorrie Moore.

mom said...

E, I didn't realize that I passed on to you and Michelle the idea of not confronting people, because I felt the same way when I was younger. I still do it, but I will speak up depending on who it is. As I told Michelle,you don't have to have everyone like you. Not everyone has to be your friend. Keep up the good work - keep asserting yourself, everyone else does, so why not you!