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So I asked Robyn to send pics of her cart. We kind of decided in that discussion a few days ago started by Jonathan in VA that NT is the best option for people on the cart simply bc it requires so little schlepping of prepared plans, materials, etc. So here are the pics from Robyn. Having the rules on the cart is creative but can you imagine how that cart is literally her classroom and how demeaning that is, really? Like all the other teachers get a classroom and cart people get a super mini eensie-weensie itty-bitty rolling classroom and you still have to teach. Anyway, being on the cart could be any of us next year given the gross disrespect that Sean pointed out that this phenomenon represents in our schools these days. There but for the grace of God….




Comments

    • Robyn
      January 31, 2018

      Believe me, I’m a walking (rolling?) joke. At least everyone knows who I am. . . “Here comes the cart lady. . .”
      I almost take out at least one person daily. . .

      reply
  • Udo Wegner
    January 31, 2018

    It makes me smile and I have had the same problem for 28 years. I have several big baskets in which I carry around my stuff for the younger students. Lots of animals, toys like cars and locos, food stuff, clothing items and other stuff at home. We language teachers don’t even have a room where we can store our things properly. They are in our staff room hiding behind a sofa and chairs.
    I envy those teachers who have a language classroom of their own. This also means I have no board of my own and it so happens that I come to a classroom and the blackboard is full! The things you learn to live with!

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      • Udo Wegner
        February 1, 2018

        I don’t know why I’ve accepted this for up to now. Maybe bc Waldorfschool are notoriously short of money and everyone makes do to their best ability and so it never came to mind that things could be different.
        I’ll ask my colleagues who are the responsible for those things at our school if it’s possible to get some space for the language props.

        reply
  • Alisa Shapiro-Rosenberg
    January 31, 2018

    I was servicing up to 13 classes a day sometimes for the first 12 years of my career. (90s-2000’s)..
    I wore a ‘necklace’ with my schedule around my neck on a piece of yarn- my daily class schedule on indiv index cards – color coded by level…I’d unpack my bag o trick for a lesson and invariably leave it behind for the next…at lunch I’d plant materials for the afternoon…
    One year they offered me the basement lunch area instead – I took it even though it took over 9 minutes to go pee and back…
    And it was gross.
    Now, I’m in my 4th or 5th classroom – I’m the first to get displaced when there are changes (we just got a whole buncha kinder classes from other parts of the district – so I got displaced this summer again)…
    I saw it as a golden opportunity to clear out all the sh&* I’d accumulated from my ‘legacy’ days…a colleague was doing a service project in Honduras so I sent her with a lot of the too-hard reading and poster stuff…
    The hardest thing about not having a space is not having what you need for improvising…
    at any moment I can come up with barbie’s bathtub or a rubber chicken…
    As elementary specialists we have learned to fly under the radar and make due…

    reply
    • Robyn
      January 31, 2018

      Yes, Alisa! Not having “stuff” to improvise with is a problem. “Oh, I forgot that in my office. Again.” (I do have an office that I share with the Mandarin teacher so at least I have a place to go during my prep period and where I can store my cart every night).
      The funny thing is that others have told me how lucky I am to have that nice big cart. Apparently, it is the best one in the school!

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  • Steven
    January 31, 2018

    Amazing. Keep your spirits high and know that you bring the most joyous moments to your students. For me, I would go minimal. I would lose the calendar (I use date by talking about birthdays and seeing who is the oldest and youngest in the class). The more sane you can get, the better.

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      • Udo Wegner
        February 1, 2018

        Defenitely in the top 5 I believe!!!
        I’m working harder than ever at staying sane and only through this PLC have I been able to put my own sanity first and seeing that this actually is best for my students as well.
        But at my school it seems I belong to a minority who knows that classroom management is crucial and that we have to train quite a number of kids to behave in a way that fosters community and learning and not let those kids get away again and again with disrespectful behaviour.
        In this school year I have done sth I never did before, I actually told some kids that their behaviour was disrespectful in the eyes of an adult! It seems to have made a difference.
        But isn’t it sad that we teachers have to do what would be the parents’ job in the first place?

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        • Steven
          February 1, 2018

          Udo, that’s been the current situation in the US since like the 80s or 90s; especially in urban areas. I remember seeing kids making teachers crying, fighting in class, cussing/swearing at teachers.

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          • Udo Wegner
            February 2, 2018

            That’s why you are the real heroes. In comparison to you my life at school seems almost perfect.
            Disrespectful behavioury, yes, but I can’t remember a kid swearing at me ever!!! You make me a very grateful teacher.

  • Taron
    February 4, 2018

    Hello All,
    I am on the cart, a colleague of Jonathan’s in VA. I will send some pics of mine, too. I’ve eliminated everything but the essentials (compared to last year) and everything is rollin’ (pun intended) much smoother this year.
    The idea of rolling around actually isn’t that bad now that I am getting used to it – I just wish the school administration would do a better job of making sure that I can get all of the materials that I need in each of the three classrooms in which I teach so there is never an issue of wheeling bulky items around or forgetting quoi que ce soit … It would also be nice to have some input in terms of how those classrooms are set up (this is the aspect of cart pushing that annoys me the most).
    Thanks for the suggestions and discussions.
    Taron

    reply
  • Greg
    February 5, 2018

    I have voiced my opposition to teachers sharing classrooms in my own school and they listened to me. It’s just not conducive to classroom management or learning. We don’t need a “World Language Office” and then to share classrooms or have teachers going around on carts.

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  • Robyn
    February 5, 2018

    Unfortunately, there is no avoiding sharing a room as there just aren’t enough classrooms. I think it’s great you advocate for your dept, Greg.
    How do I get go about this sticky situation? I share a room one period with my department chair who stays in the room at least half of the period. She is sitting at the front of the room at her teacher desk directly next to where I am standing and conducting class. Sometimes she is working, but sometimes she’s texting on her phone! So while I’m teaching a class, my students are seeing not just me at the front of the room, but her. I have no problem if she/anyone wants to observe my class, but I find this behavior day after day to be completely rude and distracting. There is a teacher lounge or another teacher’s empty classroom that she can go to during that period. Since she’s my dept head and it’s my first year in the building, do I say something to her or to my principal who sets up the room share schedule? I’m wondering if I should just hold off until I find out if I’m asked back for next year.

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    • Joanthan Marye
      February 6, 2018

      Robyn-
      I would suggest this: talk to your dept. chair. Explain to her that it is actually distracting to your students (and to you) for her to be in there. Invite her to feel free to pop in and out in case she needs to get something from time to time in case she forgot it (I mean, she is losing her space too- I can understand). However, that for the class time, that you prefer to have the space to you and your class.
      Truly, it is YOUR students’ learning community with YOU that you are creating in that space and not her for that period.
      I know that it can be “touchy” perhaps since she’s the dep. chair, BUT, just open up the conversation and see how it goes.
      Stick up for your students. If it is distracting to them, advocate for them.
      Good luck.

      reply

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