Sometimes I wish I worked in a less whiny profession. And it isn’t the kids who whine. I’m talking about other teachers. I mean, really people, just because you work with kids all day doesn’t mean you need to act like one.
Is it just NYC schools, or are teachers generally whiny in other places, too? I don’t remember this happening when I worked in publishing and for the non-profit organization.
We get a resident artist to come to our school to teach African dance. One of the other teachers called it a waste of time. I said I loved it. The whole room got quiet. And they asked me why. I said, “It teaches the English Language Learners directionality, it gives kids a different way to learn. It ties in directly to our social studies curriculum…” That’s all I could think of at the time, but since I’ve been home, more has come up. It is total physical response! It teaches them to recognize patterns and rhythm, which connect directly with math and poetry. It teaches them to LISTEN for cripes sake. If they don’t listen, they mess up, and everyone knows that they weren’t listening. When one is spending a ridiculous amount of time doing test prep, it feels damn good to stomp one’s feet. The teacher is African-American, but he sometimes wears a shalwar, much like many of our students’ parents. And it makes them realize that Islam is not isolated in their countries, it is all around the world.
Sorry you had to listen to my rant. This is what you get for making me blog every single day in an otherwise uneventful month. But seriously, don’t freakin’ knock the arts when I’m in the room. I will knock you down.