kate5kiwis: Q&A. oh ok, just the Qs then.


“If you were all alone in the universe with no one to talk to, no one with which to share the beauty of the stars, to laugh with, to touch, what would be your purpose in life? It is other life, it is love, which gives your life meaning. This is harmony. We must discover the joy of each other, the joy of challenge, the joy of growth.” — Mitsugi Saotome

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Q&A. oh ok, just the Qs then.

1. how do i catch three separate teachers' vibes and keep each of their classes happy and focussed in each different classroom each hour times five in one day? (and does that sentence even make sense?)

2. how do i pitch one lesson to thirty separate individuals when only five of them get what i'm saying, twenty of them want to talk loudly about the weekend, and five are sneaking lollies from their schoolbags?

3. why do these teenagers seem to prefer me standing at the front of the room, didactic-styles, instead of getting in their faces and provoking conversations between groups and individuals?

4. why do they freak out when i ask them to talk about the answers to their neighbour/group before they write it down in ink? or freaker outer when i ask if anyone would like to share opinions with the class?

5. why do some think it's so funny to say unrelated words at double decibels as an answer to a question about the text in front of them? (ok, it's kinda funny - once - more than once is like telling the same knock knock joke over and over. oh, i do that. maybe funny then.)

6. why do they want me to spoon-feed them the answers rather than rejoicing in the quest of finding it out themselves?

7. why must i micromanage the pens down, eyes this way, please move to a different chair stuff?

8. will i actually ever teach anything? inspire inquiry? cause passion? or just babysit?

9. what is the point of the revised curriculum if it ain't manageable?

10. how do i cultivate mutual respect without donning my policeman's hat, or bribing with jellybeans? (and how many beans make five?)

11. what the heck is wrong with my philosophy of teaching? and why do i feel like such an idiot for wanting to trust the learning journeys of beautiful souls?

12. am i wrong to expect skooly-teenagers to still love learning?

13. am i cut out for this?

14. why is the skin on my little finger peeling off?


Blogger Steve said...

1. You can't. And you shouldn't. Love your own vibe and they will to.

2. See answer to 1 above.

3. "Talk one on one with a teacher dudess? Are you kidding?" However, they're wrong and their awkwardness needs challenging. Persist.

4. "Talk one on one with my peers about serious learning stuff? Are you kidding?" See answer to 3 above.

5. In-jokes. Class jokers. Love 'em or hate 'em you'll never be rid of them. Learn some great put downs or a sarcastically bored tone of voice. Or just roll with it.

6. They're kids at school. "We're here to learn not work!"

7. They're kids at school. Attention spans are minute unless talking about games, music, alcohol and peer relationships. They need pushing to pay attention to serious learning stuff.

8. You will and you are. There'll be at least one kid in every class that you teach that you will make a huge difference to. But it isn't always your business to know when it happens or who it happens to.

9. No point at all. A rebellion is needed. Or at least some questions to a sympathetic ear.

10. Over time and by being true to yourself. By being fair and constant. Kids do respond to that over time. They like to know where they stand.

11. There is nothing wrong with your philosophy of teaching. Nothing wrong at all. You are just experiencing a little bit of self doubt / exhaustion. This is normal. This is good. You will come through this feeling stronger (though possibly still exhausted). Stay with it. You're doing good.

12. Not wrong. But maybe a little niaive if you expect them to have this love naturally. The love for learning has to be taught to them too.

13. Hell yes.

14. Your hands need moisterizing and possibly a weekend kicking loose and having fun. Works for me.


10:33 PM  
Blogger Little Miss Flossy said...

Oh yeah, what Steve said. ALL of it. And being a reliever makes it a million times harder. Because teenagers need 'training' in your ways and they need constant little increments of practice. (I've can never remember which way to spell it so I'm just guessing). You may just have to bite the bullet and get your own wee class LOL Keep at it, when you finally make the break-through with teenagers (and with some you never will!) they'll love you forever.

your devoted fan.

7:23 AM  
Blogger Jen said...

hang in there :)

praying for you

7:39 AM  
Blogger Rob said...

start by giving out lollipops and don't count em!

practice with a c - is just like ice....(the ending, that is) ICE is a noun, therefore practice is also a noun. Practise with *is* in it is a verb-see if you can find the connection yourself (and if you can't just remember that it's not the noun one!)

as for the answers, I wanna come and chat with you face-to-face!

1:37 PM  
Blogger Sandra - too heavy to stand on a soapbox, but undeterred said...

I wrote some poetry in my first year teaching as I asked similar questions and generally and specifically engaged in torture of my self and others and wondered what was the point.

I don't have the poetry anymore. Turfed.

Relieving is one of the most torturous form of teaching known to humans. It will be much better when you have your own class(es). Not magically easier, but there will be a journey to travel together, not just blimmin hours to fill.

You have raised four children which is a feat of great strength and bravery. You will be a fabulous teacher with your own song.

7:15 PM  
Blogger Ruta M. said...

It's really hard doing reief teaching. The oldest I used to teach was 10/11 year olds in some very challenging schools and that could be so hard. My suggestion is to forget your nice interactive self and be the 'mean' teacher who takes no nonsense. I found that starting with a fairly basic task that the less able pupils could manage, would keep the unruly element occupied while the more able kids would then move onto more challenging activities. The key is to keep everybody occupied, even if they are designing a poster of their favurite band if it is something you have asked them to do then they have 'co-operated'. Once you have your own class life will be completetly different. Good Luck !

11:41 PM  
Blogger SoozNooz said...

Breathe in breathe out ...it will be ok and the world will still turn! x
It has been the same since the beginning of time...
a reliever ---- wooooohhhoooo! Remember?

1:18 AM  
Blogger Cally said...

The first year I homeschooled, dh did that 1 year teacher training course. By the time he had done his sections, he was fully behind the idea of his boys never going to school - he couldn't stand the way the kid's attitudes to learning changed as the years went by.

By the time he had done relieving for 2 terms, I gave him an ultimatum: get out of teaching or I'll bloody divorce you. He was so tormented by the system failure.

I still don't believe schools are fit places for children or teachers.

I know there are wonderful teachers who make a difference (I had a couple in my life) but BUT Katie, Katie, lovely Katie, don't hang in there if you find it too much for your soul. Give it a good go, but if it starts to destroy you, get the hell out. xox

8:38 AM  
Blogger skatey katie said...

hello beautiful people
thanks so much for all the encouraging words - i think this limbo is just that - a limbo - and i've decided to name it 'policeman-slash-entertainer' (jokes about the slash, but hahahahaha) and find the sunshine in every day. cos there's a good amount of sunshine with the frustration, and heck, i remember being frustrated with some homeskooly things too - i just didn't write about them here.
oh jeez louise, that does sound defensive.
just needa make my best go of this new thang.
peace X

5:19 PM  
Blogger oacemama said...

Kate...I could have written the EXACT same post today...

love Steve's answers, and totally agree with Cally.

looking forward to a catch up in a couple or weeks

Go find you some 6 year olds to paint with all day

5:02 PM  
Anonymous Hay said...

Oh yeah, love that. Stabby, stabby, stabby!

I mean, um, well, um.

11:48 AM  
Blogger Carnies said...

I WANT THAT; on a t-shirt! Love you to relief heaven and back x (there is such a place...) and we're a few moments on from there ... and it's all panning out xx

11:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a stupid I can provide answers.

1. Don't bother. The previous teachers vibe is not required, just use your own.
2. Lollies just catch them or ignore them, 5 kids get it is good and 20 kids want to talk loudly so try involving them in the conversation more.
3. Simple, if you talk to kids you make them focus, if you just stand there they need not bother.
4. Why would we want to talk to our friends about this stuff? Most kids aren't that close to their peers, it's just the clique they fall into.
5. Sometimes inside jokes are funny e.g. My friend has used the same joking insult 100 times over and it's still funny.
6. Because it's easier, people like the easy way in life.
7. Pens down: For me I just want to keep working, eyes this way same thing or I wanna chat, please move some people just don't want to.
8. Babysitting is part of the job. Teaching is too. The right words at the right moments can change a person whole way of thinking.
9. There is none, it's just simply extremely PC people trying to control things.
10. Jellybeans doesn't work, they'll just lose focus soon enough. Police hat is sometimes nessercary but try getting closer to the kids so they know whether to like you or hate you. If they don't know you they can't respect you.
11. Nothing, I see no problem with it, just keep working on it. Be flexible, if you see a chance to improve, do it.
12. Nope, some kids love learning and some don't. And some learn to love it if the topic is interesting
13. If you weren't cut out for it I doubt you would be in the proffession.
14. Unfortunately that one is a bit more complicated than all the others (for me anyway). I have no clue. Just either peel it off or moisturise it.

P.S. I know this is old I just wanted to answer your questions (You have taught me before, very recently in fact. I doubt you will know who this is)

5:14 PM  

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