Last year, after I wrote a blog on the EC Ning expressing some frustration, a kind commenter offered this advice to deal with my frustration: go back to the kids. So today, that’s what I tried to do.
I took advantage of the open 5th hour (thanks to my student teacher) and spent that time subbing as the rehearsal accompanist for the choir. Occasionally, I’d look at the choir and see the faces of students from my English classes. They were part of something absolutely beautiful, and it was good to be reminded that while my students might not be able to tell me what a simile is (seriously–don’t they learn this in the 5th grade?!?!), they can do some pretty wonderful things.
When my 5:15 piano lesson canceled, I decided to head to the baseball game. Almost half of the team is either a current or former student of mine, and as I sat in the sunshine remembering all the reasons I love baseball, I just focused on my students. The catcher, the centerfielder, a pitcher, kids who hit singles, kids who scored runs.
Watching all these students do what they love, I felt a little of my classroom frustration dissipate. Sure, poetry is important and so is film genre and hegemony. But it’s not all there is in my students’ lives. They are so much more than what I see for 47 minutes. If I’m going to make it through the next five weeks, I’m going to need to remember to go back to the kids.