Category Archives: Teaching

A tribute to Ellie on her first day at a new school!

Ellie: ok so i want to play a free association game with my juniors tomorrow
by passing out cards with words on them
words that have to do with american history
do you think the kids know who the black panthers are?
i doubt it
or malcolm x?
me: ummm
i don’t know
i knew
but more from forrest gump
Ellie: but see that’s good
that’s what i want us to talk about
where they know all this stuff
like if i wrote “the hamptons”
they’d know what it was
from gossip girl
not from f. scott fitzgerald
me: right
Ellie: but the brilliant point i’m trying to make is that literature is just another part of culture like gossip girl and forrest gump
me: are you making this point to your students?
or to me?
Ellie: to my students
(they’re not that smart)
me: you haven’t met them yet!
they could be!
Ellie: i’m teaching REGULAR 11th grade english
me: ouch
Ellie: i get the dumb kids
me: that’ll be rough
when do they trust you with the smartypants?
Ellie: so i have to make things very explicit
like “hey look! reading books and watching gossip girl is pretty much the same thing!”
“because they both tell us something about the culture that produced it!!”
“hoooray for american literature!”
me: hmmm
Ellie: “now do your homework or i’ll kill you!”
me: well
i’m glad a) i’m not in 11th grade and b) i’m not in your class
Ellie: thanks
me: was that not supportive?
your kids are going to love you
Ellie: gracias


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Filed under Books, Daily Reminder NOT to Have Children, Ellie, Gossip Girl, Middle School Memories, Teaching, Uncategorized

Not all Georgians are as smart as Ellie

For example, there’s this girl:

(Via Inadvisable)

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Filed under Current Events, Education Reform, Georgia on My Mind, Teaching, Uncategorized

Cooking with boys

Ellie: that sexy spoon thing made me so hungry
but if i leave the library i have to pack up my computer
me: it made me want a boy to kiss me in a kitchen while holding flat leaf parsley
Ellie: i find cooking with boys highly problematic
because they just get in the way
and don’t know how to do anything
it’s not even remotely romantic
me: maybe you’re not good at giving tasks
Ellie: please i’m a teacher
i delegate like a pro
and if [redacted] weren’t retarded maybe he’d be easier to cook wth
but if i’m like “here [redacted] cut up this pepper”
he somehow ends up cutting his finger, bleeding all over the pepper, and then dropping it down the garbage disposal while attempting to rinse it off
so then i have to tell him to sit down and watch TV

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Filed under Food, Relationships, Teaching

Making me proud to have had him as a teacher…

…Michael Lewis was possibly my favorite prof at Williams (definitely top 3). I thought his op-ed in today’s WSJ was dead-on.

It is often said that great achievement requires in one’s formative years two teachers: a stern taskmaster who teaches the rules and an inspirational guru who teaches one to break the rules. But they must come in that order. Childhood training in Bach can prepare one to play free jazz and ballet instruction can prepare one to be a modern dancer, but it does not work the other way around. One cannot be liberated from fetters one has never worn; all one can do is to make pastiches of the liberations of others. And such seems to be the case with Ms. Shvarts.

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Filed under College, Glad my parents paid so much money for my art history d, High Arts, Teaching

Oh to be a teenage boy in Florida

In just two weeks, three different Tampa teachers have been arrested for having sex with students.

This surprises me because:
a) high school girls are pretty slutty these days
b) I watched the Mary Kay Letourneau Lifetime movie and totes didn’t understand the appeal
c) ummm… how many disgusting 40-year old women can there be in one county?

Since 2005, at least 10 schoolteachers in Hillsborough and neighboring counties have been arrested on similar charges.

Apparently, Dawson’s Creek was closer to reality than we all thought!

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Filed under Daily Reminder NOT to Have Children, Gross, Teaching

Better her than me

Ellie: i have to call the mother of the kid i hate
me: you only hate one kid?
Ellie: actually, yes
me: if i were a teacher, i’d hate all of them
Ellie: and he’s the one
i really have a difficult time finding anything redeeming in this kid
he’s a manipulative piece of shit
and now his mom’s like “i think [redacted]’s deteriorating in your class. can we talk about it?”
so i’m going to call and be like “[redacted] is a shithead and he’s always been deteriorating in my class”
ahh i just called and the mom was like “i can’t talk right now because [redacted] is home”
me: doesn’t [redacted] know he’s a shithead
and don’t they have walls?
Ellie: and does the mother have to hide from her child?
i should’ve been like “oh i’m sorry, i didn’t realize [redacted] was the boss of you”
me: that would have been a great way to kick it all off
Ellie: i know
also, i had a list on my legal pad
of artillery to use against [redacted]
and the top of the list said “TOP TEN REASONS [REDACTED]’S A SHITHEAD”
i should’ve just mailed it to his mom

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Filed under Daily Reminder NOT to Have Children, Teaching