Other Days…

So after seeing this way too perfectly true quote…
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We thought we would create a collection of some of the best examples of “Other Days” in this teaching world. (Thank you teacher friends for your contributions!)

Teaching:

Some days you change the world. Other days you…

  • Raid the desk looking for absolutely anything that contains chocolate, caffeine, or sugar… even if it’s not your desk and you’ll have to replace it later
  • End up laughing with your class over just how bad that lesson was
  • Eat all of the cookies left over from your morning Fika
  • Watch funny cat videos at your desk until it’s an appropriate time to leave the building
  • Find the pile of “things to hand out” still on that front table after the kids have gone home
  • Give yourself a sticker at the end of the day just to make things a little bit better
  • Extend the silent reading period until you can gather up enough strength to finish the afternoon
  • End up crying in the textbook room where you hope no one will find you
  • Borrow a friend’s dog for “bring pet to school day” only to have one of your students spend the whole day on the floor with the dog
  • Crawl into bed as soon as you get home from work without turning on a single light, and wake up, super confused, with your keys still around your neck
  • Have to lie down on the school couch in the dark for your lunch hour
  • Book yourself a substitute teacher and realize later you booked them for a day over Spring Break
  • Sit at your desk having a debate over whether or not students actually need feedback on the assignments piled in front of you
  • Have to actually turn the radio off on the drive home just for some peace and quiet
  • Eat all the leftover icing after a wild gingerbread man hunt that you planned for 50 kids at your school
  • Wear slippers to school and are so tired that you don’t even notice until recess
  • You actually look forward to a staff meeting because there are cookies

We all have those days! But laugh about it, shake it off, and remember the times when you are changing lives.

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Book Tale: The Bridge to Brilliance

I’ve just finished reading Nadia Lopez’s new book, “The Bridge to Brilliance” and I highly recommend all educators find their own copy ASAP.  Let me explain…mhba2

Nadia Lopez is the principal of Mott Hall Bridges Academy (MHBA), a public middle school she opened roughly six years ago.  Ms. Lopez’s story is one of determination, grit, inspiration and ferocity – she always does what is right for kids.  MHBA is located in Brownsville, Brooklyn, an underserved community riddled with gang turf wars and crippling poverty stats so intense that many of us can’t even wrap our thoughts around it.  I will admit that I definitely spent some time Google Earth walking myself around Brownsville while reading this book because I had absolutely no idea where the town was.  However, as I read through Ms. Lopez’s story I was able to peek inside the lives of the Brownsville students she works with every single day (even during spring and summer break) and feel like I was right there with them all.  Wow, what lives those kids lead.

Interestingly, I found many similarities between MHBA and the school I work at here in Victoria.  Both places are middle schools (grades 6-8), both have a relatively small student population (roughly 200 students), but of that small student population both schools have many students who are living below the poverty line, both have many dedicated educators and both have powerful and passionate female administrative teams.  Most of these similarities, as they came up throughout the story, brought me to tears because I could see myself, my school, and my very own students within the pages of “Bridge to Brilliance”; they’re the east coast American version of us.  I Tweeted out to Ms. Lopez and she wrote me back:

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So exciting to be communicating via Twitter!

I think Ms. Lopez’s story, which was brought to media attention in 2015 via Humans of New York, needs to be read by every single educator.  Not only will her words make you question your dedication (yes, even those of you who are the most dedicated), but they will also help you see a different side to educating the whole child/the whole community.  Ms. Lopez will inspire you with her triumphant successes, but she will also make you cry because of the injustice her students endure.  This story will remind you that giving up on a child is never an option.  Go get her book and start reading – I promise you’ll learn something.

(Follow the hashtag #TheBridgeToBrilliance to read more reviews of Nadia Lopez’s story)

You can also check out Ms. Lopez’s TED talk to learn more.

Karley