Monday, June 11, 2012

Let it go....

I am excited to participate in Teachers Write virtual writing camp hosted by author Kate Messner. If you haven't heard about it, check it out! Join in! 

Check out Jo Knowles's site for today's mini-lesson.

I've taught for 13 years at 5 different schools and have worked with many amazing teachers, but there are a handful who I remember for reasons other than their happy, helpful attitudes. 

I chose to publish this because I'd bet most of us have worked with this teacher at some point in our careers. Completely frustrating! I've never wanted to 'tattle' on a co-worker, but daggone it if there weren't days when I just wanted to run like a first grader to the principal and unload. 

It is frustrating to work so hard, investing time and energy and thought and money only to have a teammate who seems to just be punching in and out every day without a care in the world. 

So here's my list poem. Many years have passed since working with this person. I'd like to believe that I'm older and wiser now and should I run across a teammate like this in the future I can let the behaviors go rather than taking them to heart as I once did.

At first sight, you might be inclined to think recovering addict,
Unpressed chinos, sometimes stained, sometimes dirty
XL shirt (also unpressed) swallowing a shortish-L frame
Unshaven always.

I can get past looks, I can forgive poor clothing choices, I can understand a budget that doesn't afford super nice threads,
but what I cannot forgive 
Lackadaisical attitude regarding job duties
Roll in whenever, roll out whenever
The frequent question from students, "Where is Mr. So&So??"
"Wait. You mean he's not in his room??"

Why write plans when the Internet has plans ready and waiting?
Why write sub-plans when your teammates will do it for you?
Teach the Standards? Why bother?
Why bother with any paperwork at all?

And yet, what gets under my skin the most
is that
They didn't mind that the nicknames he gave them were downright insulting.
"Chicken-neck" "Lawn mower head" 
They didn't mind that they weren't learning what other students were learning.
They didn't mind that he never took notes in meetings and frequently dropped the ball on assigned duties.
They didn't mind that the classroom walls were bare.

They didn't know any better.
But I did.

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