Monday, March 14, 2005

back to work

These past few days have been a blur to me. I want to live my life in love the way Papa did. It was unusual to see a funeral where there was sadness but no regrets, to see a family operated from love instead of remorse.(a new concept for me, given my upbringing by the Southeastern Guilt Distributors, Inc.) The children & his widow were fairly stoic, the grandchildren wept inconsolably. My nephew said,” you got to love him longer than I did.”

The thing that stands out most I my mind is my 5 year old nephew Seth, who, when it was explained to him what would happen, piped up,” I got a shovel!” and actually brought, not a beach toy shovel , but a large camp shovel , to the graveside! We are a family who treasures & indulges its children, needless to say. Papa always joked that his youngest great-grandsons, ages 3-6 would be his pall-bearers. And they were, standing by the side of the oldest sons from each sibling.

So now I am back at work after being off for three days. I realize again how much I truly hate my job! Whoops, let’s try & be positive here. I am so glad this job gives me the opportunity to have lots of negative energy to rise above! How is that? I just never would have believed that there can be so many anal-retentive, fearful, downright mean people teaching school! You almost never hear a child laugh in these halls & if you do, it is quickly & sternly squelched. I have been teaching for 20 years & based all my dealings with children upon love & laughter, so this place is like a foreign country to me. This is my first year here, so I keep telling myself that I will adjust, but I hope I don’t get used to the casual cruelty I see all around.

I am slowly making some friends and I keep telling myself that maybe the people here need some care & affection. I am as kind as I can be, determined not to act like them! They all act as though they are survivors of some group tragedy.Oh, well; I only have to pass them in the halls. They have to live with themselves all the time.

I can get through it, do my best for the kids, who peck like starving sparrows at the small seeds of attention I have thrown them, and get home to my loved ones, leaving work at work.

I was a great teacher back when they actually let me teach. The No Child Left Behind Act has gutted Special Education, making it almost impossible to give each child the attention deserved & needed. Rather than teach daily living skills desperately needed, we have to teach memorized answers to the standardized test questions. For example kids that read on a 2nd grade level are forced to take a 4th grade test no matter how low their IQ. A week of instruction is lost each quarter while we give the tests to crying children.

I used to think I’d teach ‘till I dropped in front of my class, now I am counting the days until I can retire.

Enough of this rant, I will be off for Spring Break in 10 days, so my mood will definitely improve!


sistercdr said...

It kills me what NCLB has done to education.

lamove04 said...

I hope you can bring some laughter and love to your new school, certainly sounds like it could use it!  As for NCLB, it would infuritate me if that dim bulb president of ours was directly impacting my work like this-- arrgh!  --Albert