If You Only Knew

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If you knew all the things teachers have to do, your head would spin.

We teachers in the United States are in the midst of a massive education reform. Is it needed? Yes! Is it easy? No, not at all. Not for anyone. Not even close to easy.

Let’s examine what we are doing. If I can even think of all the bits. And this is just the new stuff, not anything to do with grading, parents, workshops, etc!

1. Newish standards. While the Common Core standards have been available for a couple of years, this year the state tests are aligned to them. We are full on Common Core. Makes sense, except we don’t have the Common Core curriculum yet…

2. New reading and math curricula. Awesome idea. I’m extremely excited about this, but it would be great of we had all the pieces so we could dig in.

3. NYC instructional shifts. These shifts are tied to the standards and the curriculum. I call the shifts new old ways to teach. good ways to teach too. Makes sense. Lots of info on the DOE website, not sure how much it gets used outside of PDs.

4. New teacher evaluation system. Again, an idea that make sense. Teaching is a profession just like medicine and law and the standards for who can teach should be high. After all, teachers are the foundation for every other profession. Tons of paper work? You bet. Do I like it? Not particularly, but it’s necessary.

5. New mayor for NYC. Monumental event for the teaching profession. A mayor who supports teacher may be elected! Imagine that!

Oh my gaud! This little snapshot makes me crazy! Why am I a teacher!

Why am I a teacher?

A lot of days I forget, but then I remember when I hear the kids talk about how someone needs to “improve their conventions”. Or I have kids staying back from gym to quiz on math literature by choice. Or the parents tell me that their child is excited to go to school.

Oh ya, that’s why. Forget all the other stuff.

Guilty No More :)

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It is not healthy to hold that guilt that many of us feel.  It wears you down like a stress on your soul.  So today I felt guilt free, and I don’t even feel guilty about it.

Let me tell you why.

Every summer I dedicate time to go into school to plan for the upcoming school year.  In the past, planning had taken up to 3 weeks of my summer mental relaxation time.  Fortunately this summer all parties involved know that one week will be plenty.  While the planning time is necessary (added bonus to doing summer work for the DOE is that you do get paid – say what?), the fact I have to go to the place I spend a very wearing day of the 10 months of my year – in July is enough to trump out most guilt I would feel for the rest of the year.

Ten months of my year are spent teaching underprivileged, under cared-for, under-loved yet entitled elementary students (the use of the word entitled here is very loaded and I’ll leave it open for your interpretation).  Every one of those days I go to work is a day that I strangely look forward to (well… usually anyway, and not until I’ve fully woken up) despite the overly taxing expectations and demanding environment.  The dedication, time, skill, and nurturing we (teachers and school staff members) put forth in our daily routines should entitle us a golden ticket to a guilt free life!

So please indulge me in a couple of pleasures I encountered today on my lovely stroll home, of course after I had my lobster roll lunch at Luke’s Lobster and a freaking delicious Rootbeer Float frozen yogurt at Yogurt-land!

YES! This is Rootbeer Float, New York Cheesecake and Orange-sicle frozen yogurt topped with cookie dough and Heath of course! 🙂


I also love watching these talented people! #newyorkdogwalkers


And Just in case you need a huge stone mermaid (?) head… inquire within…



Please enjoy some guilt-free time!