Saturday, March 10, 2018
Tuesday, March 6, 2018
I have been relatively quiet over the talk of a teacher walk-out. I have rallied, marched (including in 1990 for HB 1017). I have visited the Capitol and talked to legislators. I've attended committee meetings and floor debates. I've made my position clear: I'm an education voter. Despite our visits and calls, teachers (and support personnel and all state workers) continue to be ignored as ideologues stick to their 'trickle down' theories. Our state MUST have new, recurring revenue. Our state must take care of our people, and especially our children.
I read Beth Wallis's post last night on Face Book, and felt she expressed the collective frustration of our teachers...not only for themselves, but for their students. Our students deserve better than this status quo. I support Beth and her colleagues. I support my Grands' teachers and schools.
More school districts are coming forward, ready to support some kind of action.
We are taking action because the students of Oklahoma deserve it.
We are taking action because our legislature has proven to us that it's never just going to "work itself out", because they've had damn well over a decade to figure this out.
Thursday, February 15, 2018
Every teacher parking spot was filled. Teachers walked into their schools today, knowing the OK Legislature couldn't compromise to find a budget that included a raise for teachers.
Teachers walked into their schools today, knowing another school had suffered devastating losses...lives, dreams, innocence.
As teachers we know and can empathize with how other educators feel. I'm not in the classroom, but here's what I know happened today in classrooms all over Oklahoma, and all over our countries.
Teachers walked into their classrooms and sat down, praying for some composure before they saw their students.
Teachers looked around their rooms, trying to decide where the safest spots would be to shelter students in an attack.
Teachers tried to plan lessons that would engage their students and distract them all from the impact of yesterday's shootings.
Teachers greeted every student a little more warmly today. They looked into the eyes and the souls of their students and understood how vulnerable they all are in what should be the safest place in our society.
Teachers hugged students a little more closely today. They watched the swarm of students with more gratitude today, and with deep mourning for #Parkland, for Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Students were lost: Alyssa Alhadeff, Martin Duque Anguiano, Nicholas Dworet, Jamie Guttenberg, Luke Hoyer, Cara Loughran, Gina Montalto, Joaquin Oliver, Alaina Petty, Meadow Pollack, Helena Ramsay, Alex Schachter, Carmen Schentrup, Peter Wang.
Teachers fought back tears...some were not successful.
Teachers worked hard to erase the images from yesterday of classrooms just like theirs, and the carnage. Aidan could have been my student...this classroom could have been mine. In truth, Aidan IS mine. He is every teacher's student. He is every adult's son.
Teachers reflected on the teacher who gave his life:Aaron Feis. A teacher like them. A teacher at school doing his job. A teacher, who, like his students, did not come home last night. And then we learned two other educators died in this massacre: Chris Hixon and Scott Beigel. Teachers like them. Teachers who tried.
The Romeo and Juliet quote always comes to my mind when sad things happen to schools, since the play is so closely connected to high schools. These are among the last lines in the play. But there are more:
Teachers took a deep breath...
Teachers reached out and began their lessons.
Sunday, January 28, 2018
I DID NOT read any of the bills...I scanned some to try to understand, but I know I missed things, and I hope you, Constant Reader, will correct, add, define...help me out.
DISCLAIMER: My organization into negative and positive is my own. Please feel free to question or disagree. And, as always, I expect you to do your own reading and researching.
Here are the education bills I'll be watching.
Oklahoma Watch has a good list of bills to watch also. If you're not already subscribing to their emails, you should be!!
Tuesday, January 9, 2018
|My 2017 books by 'shelf'|
Top Ten, in alphabetical order:
Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood – you’ll see her again. Yes, I knew nothing about this until the publicity about the television miniseries. Told mostly in Grace’s voice, this is Atwood’s take on the lengthy imprisonment of a young woman who may or may not have committed a double murder. The narrative’s theme is quilts and piecing them together…and Atwood has Grace piece her story together, one patch at a time, until we see the whole. But what is it we really see?
Monday, January 1, 2018
I'm a reader...no shock there. But I have surrounded myself with friends who are also readers. When I taught, my goal was to contribute to expanding my students' reading life. An English teacher/Reading Specialist/School Librarian married to an Academic Librarian...our home is packed with books.
I asked my friends to share with my their favorite book from 2017 -- not the best book...their favorite. My friends came through! We had a lively conversation about books. Several of my former students visited and shared their favorites
A Pew survey from late 2016 shows a quarter of American adults did not read ONE BOOK in the previous year. As one who was raised by readers, who married a reader, who spent 40 years with students and books, that makes me sad.
So I resolve to read! I resolve to share books and to work to inspire others to read. Please join me!
What follows is two lists. One is the list of books my FB friends have identified as their favorite in 2017. I've asterick-ed the books I've read. And a double asterick means that book is on my top ten list for the year, too. You see I have a lot to work on.
The second list is the countdown list from my friend Amanda Kordeliski, School Media Specialist extraordinaire. She does a countdown of the top 25 Young Adult books she's read...and she's read a bunch!!
SO, check out these lists, read a couple, and let me know what you think!
Alice and the Zombie Queens
Astrophysics for People in a Hurry
Game of Thrones*
Guns, Germs, and Steel
In the Country We Love
The Alice Network
The Marriage Lie
The Mountain Between Us
The Professor and the Madman*
The Pain Eater by Beth Goobie
(2.5) A List of Cages by Robin Roe
Eliza and her Monsters by Francesca Zappia
(3.5) Dreamland Burning by Jennifer Latham*
Bang by Barry Lyga
You Bring the Distant Near by Mitali Perkins
Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor
If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo
American Street by Ibi Zoboi
Dear Martin by Nic Stone
Allegedly by Tiffany Jackson
Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzie Lee
Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller
Juan Pablo and the Butterflies by JJ Flowers
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas**
How Dare the Sun Rise by Sandra Uwiringiyimana
The 57 Bus by Dashka Slater
Far From the Tree by Robin Benway
The Last Thing You Said by Sara Biren
Born a Crime by Trevor Noah*
North of Happy by Adi Alsaid
The Leaf Reader by Emily Arsenault
When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon
Devils Within by S.F. Henson
Miles Morales by Jason Reynolds
Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance*
Don't see YOUR favorite book of 2017? Add it in the comments!