Today was… odd. Most of the teachers here simultaneously (without discussing it in advance) decided to have what one teacher here calls a “mental health day” – that means that we just kinda hung out with the students all day, and didn’t try to make anyone do anything that they dislike. The shop class shot hoops, my kids and a science class browsed online, social studies played chess with the third graders, second grade art played with clay, and so on for much of the school. It struck me as odd – not that teachers should have down periods, but more that everyone I talked to seemed just a bit abashed, but everyone understood. I don’t think I said anything other than “hi” for three hours this morning – and it seemed strangely normal My experience is very limited, but it surprised me that nobody was complaining about the situation. Of course, I don’t plan on making a habit of this, but… I’m not sure what to say. It’s so different from when I was student teaching – or even when I was subbing at a similarly under-performing school, somebody would have said something about how we need to teach socialization, and these are the best kids around, and shouldn’t we be ashamed of ourselves? the things we know, but I, at least, always am defensive about. One of the other teachers had a parent say when he got here “please don’t stop teaching in March.” Because it’s a real temptation – and more here than other places, I think, because it’s also a temptation to only hang out with other teachers, and complain about all our difficulties.
I’ll try to write a Real Post tomorrow.