Thursday, July 1, 2010

End of year thoughts

Well I did it-I made it through a year of teaching after four years giving advice to others on what to do.  Monday afternoon we had our special Grade Seven assembly and it felt really  special to be a Grade Seven teacher at their special school assembly.  They all looked so gorgeous and grown up, receiving their certificates in front of the whole school and their families. I thought how glad I was to have made this decision to come back to teach before I retire.  Tuesday seemed to last forever and a moment.  It was such an emotional time I think for the grade sevens, their last day as students at their elementary school.  One student who usually smiles all the time looked so sad.  My most "active" student didn't want to leave the classroom.  There were lots of hugs and a few tears.  My poor grade sixes had to just go along with all the drama.
We had our final assembly Tuesday morning.  It was wonderful to see how many kids were involved in badminton and track and field as well as how many library monitors there were and most of our grade sevens were peer helpers.  Teachers on their own time make these extras possible.

Our Minister of Education and my M.LA was moaning about how schools are getting worse today on the basis of not very conclusive data-the implication being that we are doing a poor job rather than the Ministry doing a poor job of course.  I thought why don't you see the job our teachers do?  You can't measure the success of education in the short term you have to look at the long term and somehow that seldom is done.  Many of our school's students don't have easy lives nor do their parents.  We are a school of immigrants-people coming here to make a better life for their children but that has costs-parents  busy working so that children don't always get enough time with their parents and money is often an issue.  We are losing population because of the cost of living in a city like Vancouver.  For many of our students school is definitely their second home, a place where they can see possibilities and they feel cared for and treasured.

I am tired and I know that I did not do the most stellar job this year but I feel a sense of satisfaction no matter what the Minister of Education may think.

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