Wednesday, March 9, 2016

It's What I Do

I love teaching. So this has been the worst aspect of moving abroad for me, having to take a break from what I consider to be my life's calling. But seriously - who is gonna shake a stick at being an expat in England? Getting to travel the European continent that's on our doorstep during school breaks? Exposing our daughter to other cultures? It is a great experience for our family, but I'll no doubt continue to mourn my temporary retirement until I'm back on a campus bitching about how my planning period isn't sufficient time to get things done. Dragging papers home to grade on nights/weekends. And trying to continue to make a difference in the lives of my students.

Below I've included memes with some of my favourite teaching pet peeves.

Aint it the truth, girl. I've typically taught anywhere from 100-150 kids a day, so I don't recognise everyone's handwriting. Even though I prompt the class to write their headings on assignments throughout the course of the school year, in addition to reminding students to check over everything they've written on the page before turning it in for grading, there are still a few kids in every class that forget. Every.Single.Day. On every assignment I've ever graded in my entire teaching career. 

In my experience, 99% of students ask this way. I think it just goes over their head when I respond, "Yes, you MAY go to the bathroom." No point in being a smart aleck, asking if they can... usually.

Directions, both oral and written, are the bane of a teacher's existence, followed closely by lack of access to the toilet and being the person in charge... trapped in a class of 20+ students when a kid vomits all over the floor, has a tantrum and throws a chair, etc.

Since this is English language arts/reading class, the answer is yes. I expect you to write your answers using complete sentences which include forethought and text evidence. That start with a capital letter and have appropriate punctuation at the end. No cause when you mean because. And do NOT start a sentence with the word yes or no in answer to the question because that guarantees it won't be grammatically correct.

I'd like to say the indecipherable stuff was always submitted by my struggling ESL, dyslexic or special ed students... but I can't. I should have kept a notebook of all the grammatical gaffes and goofs I've encountered over the years just for the entertainment value. 

This last one is a Catch-22. We'd all bitch about recess duty during the first and last months of the school year because it was hot as a firecracker by mid-morning. But then it was just as bad in the winter when the temps got low and we had rainy days so that the kids couldn't go outside. I always kept a cabinet full of board games out of self-defense, to give them something to do other than make a lot of noise and tear up my room when we couldn't make it outdoors for them to blow off steam.

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