|Photo by Vlad Tchompalov on Unsplash|
Saturday, May 30, 2020
Monday, May 25, 2020
|Photo by Karolis Puidokas on Unsplash|
I've just finished Great Expectations and the words of Provis (a.k.a. Magwitch) are in my head:
"I was a thinking through my smoke just then, that we can no more see to the bottom of the next few hours, than we can see to the bottom of this river that I catches hold of. Nor yet we can't no more hold their tide than I can hold this. And it's run through my fingers and gone, you see!" holding up his dripping hand.That's always been one of the great appeals of my job. I never quite know what to expect and there is a thrill in that knowledge.
Monday, May 18, 2020
You stay on your side and I'll stay on mine, you take what you want and I'll take the sunshine (America)
|Photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash|
When I checked with my students during lockdown, they were happy with the work from home/online version - for a lot of them they preferred the convenience of home (proximity to the fridge was often mentioned) and found themselves working harder and in a much less distracting environment.
These students are used to online learning - we use Zoom a lot for senior classes.
Most of the staff also enjoyed the experience and were happy to WFH when given a choice.
Seems students who were not initially used to learning via Zoom were much happier to return to school.
Larry Ferlazzo's piece reports on this. Here's one of his students:
My home is not a learning environment like at school, where there are teachers, other students, learning tools, desks/tables, chairs, a library, lots of space, and those who you can get support from. At home is like a sleeping or resting environment. In a classroom, I can focus more on my assignments/work and get engaged in the subject. Whenever I'm in a classroom, I feel prepared to learn and get my brain pumped; at home, I feel like it's very hard to be prepared because I'm always getting distracted. Whenever I need help, my teachers or classmates are there for me. When I have a question at home, I have to wait for a response.
I do have to say that whenever I'm at school, I always feel nervous in class. Now that I'm at home learning, I don't feel nervous. From my online learning experience right now, I would not choose more online learning in the future because in a school, a classroom is a learning environment. Also, I feel like it's easier to communicate with my classmates/groups for projects, teachers, counselors, and principal. Learning at a school is best for me.
For what it's worth I agree.
Wednesday, May 13, 2020
My current Year 10 English class, which I started teaching this week, have spent some time tracking my on-line presence. Of course they have!
Because of the filters on their devices, they don't have access to my Linkedin, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, or Facebook pages, but they can Google me and look at my blogs - this one in fact!
Consequently, they've been asking me about Purdzilla and Baggy Trousers!
It's natural to wonder about your teachers private life - I get that.
I can still remember the moment I walked into a record store in St Lukes, while I was at Mt. Albert Grammar, and saw a teacher from school. Stopped me in my tracks it did! I'd never considered that any of my teachers had an existance away from school before!
Weird. These days the students are a lot more savvy, that's for sure!
Saturday, May 9, 2020
Work this past week has been at the campus and I've been a lot happier.
Seems I'm not alone. Although most of the staff continue to work happily from home, we few, we happy few, we band of brothers, have pitched up at school to find the return to proper boundaries makes us feel good.
We'll remember with advantages what feats we did that day, then shall our names, familiar in the mouth as household words Purdzilla the Principal, Walding and Cooper, Te Pou and Smith, be in their flowing cups freshly remember'd.
We've been busy too, with only 6 students it would seem an easier life but whether 6 or 160, duty and online teaching combined with classroom supervisions have made the days go quickly!
Hopefully, NZ progresses to Level 2 of the Lockdown in the coming week and we happy few will be joined by the whole rock steady crew and they can share in the honour and say from this day to the ending of the world, but we in it shall be remember'd.
Tuesday, May 5, 2020
Us do opposite of all Earthly things! Us hate beauty! Us love ugliness! Is big crime to make anything perfect on Bizarro World
As I sit here today, having worked from home during NZ's Level 4 lockdown, along with my teaching colleagues, and now from the campus as we've transitioned to Level 3, I feel pretty good that education and teachers have been labelled 'essential services'.
Consider the fate of professional sportspeople in contrast. Not essential. Not employed.
Every night on the news for the last few weeks the Australian Rugby League (NRL) people have presented a comical soap opera of daft desperate decisions to restart their season.
Teachers have taught on, while overpaid big burley hirsute blokes* in shorts have become more and more impatient to get back to playing games of 'footy'.
* Very few news stories have focused on female sports teams in comparison.
As The Donald would say, 'SAD'.
And yet, in a few weeks time they will have their wish and be providing entertainment for the masses of Aussie and Nu Zild couch potatoes while underpaid teachers, the 'essential workers' remember, will continue their work in relative obscurity, and definitely in relative poverty.
It's a bizarro world!