I have, like most teachers, always intuitively known that much of what is happening in education is BS. I used to rarely let it get to me and I worried more about the students in my class. I would do stuff in my class I felt (and now know) was pedagogically sound, without having trendy education labels attached.
Then I opened a Twitter account and also started blogging.
The classrooms and collective wisdom of the teachers of the world were suddenly opened up to me.
I learned so much! Me AND my students benefited greatly from the collective knowledge of you all. I am extremely grateful!
But it has come with a price, as does everything.
Frustration has grown over time, ever so slowly, and eventually paralyzed me with bitterness and avoidance.
It has not always been this way.
There was a time when I laughed or ignored the inherent stupidity of the education machine and all its machinations, focusing on the needs of my students.
My students influenced my lessons plans: nothing or no one else dictated my lessons.
This year, state requirements, district directives, principal mandates, time’s selfishness, Twitter’s resources, blogs inspiration and my laziness had more influence than the needs of my students.
The frustration is with not only the education machine and all its machinations; but, also with well intentioned teachers who tweet and blog about the great stuff they are doing in their classes.
But, there have been times this year where I read someone’s tweet or blog, was inspired, and tried to replicate the theory and/or lessons in my classroom – often the very next day.
You could imagine the problems, restrictions, and frustrations this lead to…
I need to remember it is not the fault of teachers on Twitter or blogs that have different resources.
Yeah, I know…how stupid of me…I can only blame myself. I need to do better.
Maybe this year should be labeled “Beta”.