Friday, January 12, 2007

Teacher, Poor Teacher

While I am advocating for children with special needs, and is seeking the changes necessary to reach the better for them so that I can play my part in making a better world, another special ed teacher is quite the opposite. I jumped across this site while surfing the net.

" This is a weblog written by a real life special education teacher. The original writer, Riti Sped, has retired from teaching and is now pursuing other interests. Her entire body of work is below, and if you are new here I suggest you start with Riti's first story."

There are really those who they call "teacher workers" and those who are "educator leaders". She's retired, that's what matters most. Can you tell me if she's worthy to be called "teacher"?

I went through some of the posts, and jeez! How true, how typical of a special ed teacher's experiences. This is the reason why I wrote this in my reflections 3 years ago when I was still a fresh off the plane newbie in the American Educational System. But my difference from her is how I reacted to the same situation. Here's my own description:

"How many times have my co-teachers seen me crying outside my classroom ready to walk-out and leave without coming back? I wasn’t used to being disrespected this way by my students. Less than two years ago, back in my country I was highly respected being one of the youngest and most efficient special ed school owner. "

Here's my reflection:

"It took awhile before it sank-in to me that I wasn’t in my home country anymore, I am in America now. I am now an employee teaching in an inner-city public school, where my students are challenged most especially outside the school in what’s supposedly their most trusted environment."

And here's my analysis:

"Being an inner city school teacher is very challenging. I feel like Michelle Pfiffer in the movie “Dangerous Minds”. This story goes almost as similar with my story: Teacher and ex-marine Louanne Johnson accepts a full-time job at East Palo Alto high school without realizing that the students in her class are smart, but with social problems. She either must give up or learn how to get the students’ attention and help them learn.Guess how the story ended. Will my story end the same way?"

To be a special ed teacher is my choice, nobody is accountable but myself. I can choose to leave the profession but I don't want to, I decide to stay and make a difference. I only have one life to live. I want to be happy and to make my life meaningful. How about you?

The mediocre teacher tells, the good one explains, the superior one shows, the great one inspires (Harry Wong). Where do you fall in this category?

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