Need to Vent

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8 thoughts on “Need to Vent”

  1. I guess, do you need her permission to talk to the new teacher? I would try to meet with this new teacher, explain yourself and come from the angle of, hey, my numbers matter for you to keep your job and your numbers affect me. So, let’s try to keep our jobs together. I would imagine this person would want to meet you anyways, right?

  2. Michele,
    I am sorry you are facing this! I feel your pain!! We just got (after 5 weeks of school) an excessed teacher who has a Spanish credential but taught a bilingual science course for the past 9 years, thus no experience teaching language, into our school to teach first and second year Spanish. She admits she has no idea how to teach the language but is more comfortable with a book and worksheets so will use them. I have offered to help…let her observe, etc but she is feeling overwhelmed and doesn’t have time. I left school at 3:30 and she said she had 3 hours of grading “binder work” to do. I just said, “I guess you have to do what you have to do”.
    It is soooooooo frustrating.

    Hang in there!

    Louisa

    1. Thank you both, thank you Ben! Frau (Turner), I think it’s a great idea to go meet the teacher. There’s a strange history here of my colleague’s having total control over the regular Russian program at the middle school (despite the fact that she’s only in charge of immersion and there is another department head). So I think I’ll do just that…go share my first-week videos with her, and give her any ideas I can.

      Louisa, I am so sorry that you have that person in your department. I can understand someone not feeling she has time, but since she has no experience, you’d think she’d want to see what’s going on elsewhere. I would be jumping at the chance!

  3. It is hard to believe that this is happening to you. I believe that is your video, the one teaching Russian to the volunteers from the cross country and tennis teams. That was a great demonstration.

    Hopefully things will start turning back around.

    1. Nathaniel, that was a video of me! And Chill, I am going to make that invitation, but we have a Bryce meeting the Thursday before our state conference, and I’m not sure we’re having the regular (now Second Friday) meeting this month, because of the conference. Maybe we should do it anyway!

      PS Anyone who can drop some money and come to Alaska on a cheap ticket, come to our conference! I promise I will pick you up and take you to Seward (or I will find someone who can). It starts on September 19 and goes through Sunday. http://www.afla-ak.org/afla-2014-conference

  4. Michele, I was re-reading Dune with week and remembered something important: Fear is the mind-killer. Sounds like your Russian colleague has allowed fear to kill her mind. I agree that going to the new Russian teacher without her blessing might be the best move before she kills the program dead! All that matters is that kids are learning, and you have amply shown that.

    1. Hi all,

      Just found this post, and thought I’d share the update. I did get in touch with the teacher, shared with her some videos of my classes, and she had several questions about what year the kids were in; I had to tell her it was day 4 and 5 she was watching. She said she really wished she could do that, but had to get through some Praxis testing before she could do anything but follow the book. She did need some help to use the on-line grading system. I walked her through it.

      I invited her to First Fridays, to our conference, to everything, and she couldn’t come to any of it until we were doing academic plans, when she followed the lead of her mentor teacher and helped us put together a predictably bad first-year plan.

      Most kids have dropped her class. She will not be coming back next year, because she didn’t pass anything. I have been beating down the doors at that school, begging to teach those classes. We’ve got huge budget fights going on, but I’m still fighting for those kids! It would probably take a year or two to build up the program again (the French teacher with the TPRS skills retired, so next year his kids will all be at our school and there won’t be any more).

      Sad, sad, sad. TPRS saves teachers and kids. I don’t go out and preach to the crowds any more, but I’m thinking we need to have another intro to TPRS course in our district.

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