Disclaimer: Some content is inappropriate for readers under 18 years of age or those offended by swear words, references to sexuality, atheism, and libertarianism.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Best Porn Excuse EVER.

"... 'He explained that these young women are from poor countries and need to make money to help their parents and this site helps them do that,' investigators wrote in a memo."

Source: The Washington Times.

So, ladies and gents, if you get caught visiting X-Tube or BigBoobs.com a little too often, feel free to quote the above National Science Foundation executive. I think it's a winner.

PS: I've never actually visited BigBoobs.com. nor do I know if it's real... Just making an educated guess.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Quote of the Day

In English class, the students are on the home stretch for Romeo and Juliet.

EnglishTeacher: So how did Lord Capulet respond when his daughter refused Paris' proposal?

Student: He said "Bitch, you're gonna marry him."

I'm fairly certain she's pretty accurate with that quote. I love that girl. I'd put money on her being able to punch the lights out of anyone in the building, and I love her.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Now That's What I Call a Sticky Situation.

Science Teacher: You know what glue is made of, don't you?
Student: Sure. Everyone knows.
Science Teacher: Okay, what is it?
Student: Semen.

I imagined every kid who had eaten glue in elementary school paused for a moment when they overheard that conversation.

This science teacher is swift, though. He had the presence of mind to ask the students to "hold on to your spherical objects". You learn that lesson, pretty quickly. However, it does ruin the opportunity for your fellow colleague to utter "that's what she/he said" and so you simply swallow it and make the boss happy... That's what she said.

Friday, April 09, 2010

A Slice of My Life and I'm Pissed Off That It Is.

The bell rings signaling the start of the start of the last period of the day. About 10 upperclassmen come literally screaming, shouting, and running down the stairwell. There's about 9 kids in my little hallway alone, walking very slowly towards their classes (maybe) and 6 more girls in the restroom, talking and looking in the mirror. I tell them it's time to get to class, then move on to run my errand. I come past again and they're still there. I tell them to get moving and they look at me like I'm something that's best scraped off the sole of one's shoe and they continue their conversation. I tell them to get moving now because chances are, their last class of the day isn't held in the girl's restroom. They look at each other with looks like "who is this weirdo?" and ignore me some more. Two more upperclassmen, a boy and a girl walk into our hallway, the girl is wearing sun shades and my colleague tells her to take them off. She and her companion and split up to go into the respective student restrooms. I try again: "Um. You're supposed to be in class right now, the rule is no one is allowed to leave their classes at this time."
The response? "No one's allowed to leave their classes this time NOTHIN'." she says as she struts into the restroom.

I walk over to the grade level office to call security to flush these bastards out and a kid who has been sent there storms in, goes into the staff only area to take a chair and slams it around before setting it down to where he hoped to sit. I let the more than capable secretary handle that one.

This is what the world looks like when, no matter what you do as a teacher, you're impotent as long as the administrators continue to do nothing when you report to them the behaviors you're seeing.

It's embarrassing when you have to share with a parent or someone from central office that a student of yours has skipped class more times than Imelda Marcos has said "Go on, another pair won't do any harm" and when they ask what consequence the kid has received you have to say "Er. None."

We have to have standards. It's getting so low that they're actually making a distinction between a student being found naked and ABOUT to have sex and a student actually caught HAVING sex on school grounds. I'm sorry. Neither is acceptable, and as soon as you say one is not quite so bad as the other, you're saying one is more permissable than the other. They are children. They need firm guidance, higher expectations, and enough respect that we believe them capable of far more than this. What they don't need is some administrators thinking the only problem is that teachers are failing to "build relationships" with the students and that our sole purpose is to "get them". Fluffy hugs are fine, but the moment you think these kids incapable of better behavior than this, then this is all you're going to get.

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Culturally Responsive Teaching

It seems pretty obvious that to attract the attention of our students, we must reach them on a personal level and make the learning relevant to them and their lives. This way, they will remember it better. True. But there's a drawback to how we are encouraged to do this.

Here's the thing: There are some concepts that are universal in all cultures, however differently they may be approached or perceived by each. You don't have to explore the concept of struggle by bombarding our black kids with stories set exclusively in the days of slavery or in the murky shadows of a ghetto. Also, it's not "culturally biased", as many teachers complained, to have mention of a "fig tree" in the state graduation test, when contextual clues certainly indicate that figs are edible and a tree is, well, a tree.

The students seem to be so used to our attempts as teachers to make material relevant to them specifically that when it goes beyond the little bubbles of existence they're nestled in, they shut down.

Let's expand our young peoples' minds and THEN facilitate their connections to what they've been exposed to. THAT'S part of culturally responsive teaching. I would be sick and tired if all I was ever given to read were stories about my own culture and no one else's. Sure, it may make other people feel they're being respectful of my own culture, but that's not all I am and that's not all I'm interested in. I ADORE Greek myths, European folklore, Shakespeare, metaphysical poetry, Gothic Victorian English literature, Middle Eastern and African fables, and contemporary fiction from all over the world... Don't patronize me by limiting my education and saying I'll only be motivated by things I can directly connect to my every day life. Show me how to learn universally, and I'll be able to make the connections with or without your help, dammit!

If we limit our students to a small bubble of experience, that defines their comfort zone with very bold lines that they later struggle to cross at all and it eliminates whole worlds of opportunity from their knowledge and futures. It's okay for our black kids to read about Asian kids. It's okay for our Hispanic kids to read about white kids. Really. It's okay. I bet you, if you prick any of them, they'd bleed the same blood, and you may just teach them something new.

In Honor of the Upcoming Holocaust Remembrance Day

It's actually on April 11th, but I had to share this as it just happened... I have a student who never fails to astound me at just how much information she misses with all the sleeping she tries to do in class...

CluelessBint: Can I ask you a question?
TeacherLady: Always.
CluelessBint: Ain't Hitler from Germany?

True, he was born in Austria, but this is far closer than her last stab in the dark on a previous test when she had guessed he was from Britain. I didn't know whether to be pleased she finally got closer to the mark or horrified that it took over a month of discussing WWII and actually moving on to the Cold War before she finally got that.

Victims of the Holocaust: You will not be forgotten. Well. Maybe. Sorry about that. I do try to do my job. Really, I do.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Of Mice. Just Mice.

My relative quiet this past week is attributed to our time spent in the House of Mouse for spring break. Disney World is so much more fun if you make use of the Fast Pass option and it’s even nicer in the spring so you get a little less complaining from your little Maharajah about the heat. I got to see poor Minnie Mouse get sexually harassed by some chap who gave a gallant display to his kids by sweeping her down into a dip and pretend to kiss the surprised rodent on her fixedly open mouth. The “cast member” did a great job of waggling her finger politely and pointing to her nose, indicating that he should kiss her there instead. She deprived YouTube of a juicy video of Minnie throwing off her padded gloves and proceeding to slap the guy silly, so I respect her.

This prompted me to do a quick search to see if any Disney cast members had anonymous blogs so that I could learn some interesting tidbits about what it must be like to work at one of the parks, and not just the darker side of it necessarily… Just a frank description of the day-to-day madness- good and bad… But all I could find is Cast Member Confidential, which is more of a pitch for the guy’s book than a true blog. It's also focused more on the debauched side of working for The Mouse and may very well be made up/exaggerated to add shock value. I know those people are bound by very strict confidentiality clauses in their contracts, but I thought I’d find SOMETHING! Ah well. I guess I should respect their professionalism. After all, there are lines that I have drawn too, no matter how far beyond the acceptable they may seem to others... Ahem.