Monthly Archives: June 2012

Keep It to Yourself!

This one’s for teachers only. The rest of you will probably not find this post even slightly amusing. As a matter of fact, if you’re easily offended or super sensitive, you probably ought to stop right here.
Alright teachers, I know you’ve earned some time off. Teaching isn’t nearly as easy as TV makes it look. For those of you that teach either really small children or moody adolescents, three months is not enough in my opinion. (For the rest of you, three months is plenty of time.) I know most of you will refrain from saying something taboo, but as you well know, there are certain things we just gotta keep to ourselves. Besides, a friendly reminder never hurts. For the sake of our profession, here’s a list of some common phrases to avoid while talking with friends and acquaintances this summer:

*Really? It’s only Thursday. It feels like Saturday.
* Oh that’s right. I forgot that you have to work tomorrow.
* The other day I was so bored I actually read a book.
* I had the hardest time trying to decide whether I wanted to spread my paychecks through the summer or just get it all in one lump sum.
* It’s a good thing I have the summer off; I don’t know what I would have done.
* Try not to schedule anything between eleven o’ clock and two o’ clock. That’s when I tan.
* I’m a little sore from (fill in the blank). Good thing I don’t have to work tomorrow.
* I just love waking up on my own during the summer…without an alarm clock.
* Can’t you just take the day off?
* You have no idea how nice it is to be able to eat and go to the bathroom whenever I want.

And finally…

* Do I look tired? I shouldn’t…I took two naps today.

-Mr. B

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Posted by on June 27, 2012 in Teaching Tips


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Put Your Heads Down!

If you’re someone who still has students put their heads down when it gets a little rowdy, I’d like to remind you that it’s 2012, not 1979. Classroom management has come a long way since the last millennium. If you are someone still engaged in this practice, look around the room next time. The reason half the class has their face smashed against the top of their desk with their arms snaked around their head is because they don’t want you to see them laughing. For the record, most kids do not consider getting out of work as punishment. The sign of a good consequence is when the teacher is still calm, cool, and collected and the offending students are the ones a bit peeved.

Have you ever seen this done anywhere else… besides in a classroom? That should cause us to stop and reflect for a moment. If we’re trying to prepare kids for life beyond school, shouldn’t our consequences be more closely aligned with the real world? I mean c’mon…have you ever seen a construction foreman tell his crew to get back in the truck and put their heads down? How about a basketball coach? I just can’t see Phil Jackson saying to his team, “You guys can just put your heads down if you’re not going to rebound the ball! Go on. Put your heads down and think about what it means to hustle. Maybe in a few minutes you’ll be ready to get out there and play some basketball.”

Here are some examples of things you probably won’t hear outside the classroom:

“I ordered these without onions. Go put your head down!”

“You’re supposed be here by 7:00! Go put your head down!”

“You only sold two cars this month? Get over there and put your head down. Now!”

“Mr. President, do you want to help us balance this budget, or do you need to put your head down for a few minutes?”

The same can be said for the outdated practice of flicking the lights on and off to get kids to quiet down. Nobody else is doing it, maybe teachers shouldn’t either.

Just something to think about.

-Mr. B

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Posted by on June 5, 2012 in Teaching Tips


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I Wonder…

Here’s a list of some different things I’ve wondered over the past several years as a teacher:

I wonder…

– why some children raise their hand to answer a question and immediately after being called upon say, “Uh…I forgot.”

– why some kids are able to scrounge up enough money for a candy sale or the school carnival but not for a field trip.

– why a child who’s about to throw up feels it’s necessary to come and tell you instead of high-tailing it out the door.

– if sending three reminder slips and four e-mails really helps students become more responsible.

– why the people making decisions involving education are the ones least affected by those decisions.

– why guest speakers at school assemblies often ask open-ended questions to several hundred kids, to which they all respond in unison, then immediately tell them to quiet down.

– why our most challenging students are never absent.

– why some volunteers get all dressed up to work with elementary-aged kids. (A mini-skirt and stilettos? Seriously?)

– how merit pay and a heavy emphasis on standardized testing will improve education.

– why some teachers leave their leftovers in the fridge for several months.

And finally…

– what’s really in school pizza and why would anyone eat something that looks like that.

-Mr. B

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Posted by on June 1, 2012 in Uncategorized


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