Sunday, February 2, 2014

"EVALUATE THAT!" from Badass Teacher Suzanne

I like all of the "EVALUATE THAT" posts going around.  We are true humanitarians... everyday... There is no true way to evaluate this because we don't do these acts for recognition, a gold star, or a perfect score...

When I was a child, I thought that everyone thought like me... Always putting compassion and empathy first, helping others, obeyed the "Golden Rule" and so on....

As an adult, I learned how untrue this is... 

There are others who think and plot with greed in mind, pushing others aside to attain their own wealth.

Unfortunately, this realization occurred full force in the past few years...while teaching young children in a public school...

In my classroom where I innately teach compassion, sharing, and cooperation, I began to feel their greed seep in, and with the implantation of the common core, the levies broke.

Last year I had a 5 year old student who joined us mid year. She had traveled from one state to the next. Being abused along the way, until she landed in my room. After weeks of building trust with her, and allowing her to safely enter a classroom with 23 peers, (this was definitely a difficult task as she had never attended PreK and rarely had any social interactions at home), I was able to become a stable, loving part of her life.

Each day she would fall asleep after lunch, she would still be sleeping as my prep time approached, and rather than wake her, (I knew her sleep was more important for her well being as she wasn't sleeping at night), I would carry her with me to a colleague's room and rock her in a rocking chair until she woke naturally, or continued to sleep throughout my prep time.

From the rocking chair I would work with my colleague to discuss and write objectives, standards, lesson plans, and the other nonsensical tasks that have come with the common core.

Last year, I had moments of hopelessness... Saying daily as I walked through the halls "that doesn't make sense" or quite frankly "Where am I?!", we were in a twilight zone, we had fallen through a rabbit hole to a world of nonsensical ideas & mandates, I felt voiceless and only hoped for a monumental movement to end this chaos.

As this year began, we were once again bombarded with test scores, data, rigor, and too many acronyms to name.

Needless to say..morale was down, way down...

But something happened this year, a fire that started as a single glowing ember began to grow.. More teachers were vocal and began to question.. Everything.

As social media spread the word and connected our voices, I felt something I hadn't felt in a very long time,


Now today, I'm able to keep my head up knowing that so many others stand with me.

We are NOT data...

We are passionate about education and won't allow our passion to be destroyed, by suits..there are days when I hate my job, and yet love what I do.

Thank you BATS, I feel as though I'm our numbers grow to almost 40,000, we will be heard.


(Editor's note - this was posted on Badass Teachers Association Facebook group on February 1, 2014)

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