New teacher diaries

January 31, 2008

The verb pipe

I had a gut feeling that I would be observed again today. As it turns out, I wasn’t, but I wish I had been.

January 17, 2008

Tone is a many splendored thing

It is a 1st-grade teacher's wish that when her students leave her for 2nd grade, they will remember that in their classroom “caring was a many splendored thing.”

December 6, 2007

Boogie noun

Today I felt it for the first time. It happened in a brief, shimmering instant during my last-period 1st-grade ESL class, which is stuffed to the brim with adorable, excitable kids who cannot sit still or keep their mouths shut long enough even for me to bribe them with stickers.

November 15, 2007

Are we primitive?

For years as a student I felt as though my own education was primitive, stifling to my creativity and failing to engage me.

October 18, 2007

Tiny victories

A new teacher who has had problems getting her class settled down long enough to accomplish anything has a breakthrough.

October 4, 2007

Yelling and teaching

My husband was at a loss when he came home one May afternoon and found me curled up in a ball, crying my eyes out and calling myself everything from “incompetent” to “a bad person.”

September 20, 2007

Faith rewarded

Dequan was a petite and energetic child with a beautiful, flashing smile. Despite his positive and affectionate personality, he often frustrated me: calling out, wandering the room, limbs always moving. He distracted all of us.

September 6, 2007

Entering the year with great expectations

A teacher tells how she plans to enter her second year with a new goal in mind: to enter her classroom on day one with clear expectations — for her students as well as for herself.

June 7, 2007

When the struggles are worth it

At the conclusion of her second year of teaching, a young educator has learned that success can be measured in different ways.

May 24, 2007

Keeping my head above the water

No matter my level of exasperation, no matter how much I’d like to close my eyes and wish my students away, my students will still be there when I open my eyes and I had better have a plan — a good plan — to get through each day without losing my mind.

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