A Phillie Teacher

I was a starry-eyed teacher from New Jersey. Now I work for Philadelphia Public Schools.

Archive for September, 2010

Waiting for Super Student

Posted by aphillieteacher on September 25, 2010

One of my commenters (dkzody) suggested a new movie: “Waiting for Super Student.”

So here’s my question: what attributes would you want to see in a Super Student? no no you can’t ask for a genius. Just what do you think would be reasonable?

Top of my list would be:

  1. attends every day
  2. comes rested
  3. doesn’t use personal electronics in class
  4. head never touches the desk
  5. pays attention, takes notes and asks questions

I dunno. Am I asking too much?

What would you want to see in a Super Student?

Posted in Philadelphia Schools | 4 Comments »

Arrggggghhhh

Posted by aphillieteacher on September 24, 2010

Picture it:
Friday afternoon … last period of the day… immature sophomore English class … we’re doing grammar.. . and they actually LIKE it! They’re discussing! – arguing whether a semi-colon would be a good move . . I am about to pinch myself to see if I’m dreaming when . .

Our fearless principal comes on the PA 20 minutes before the end of the period to for a 5 minute announcement about sport scores.

What happened next?
a. Lesson over.
b. Students packed up books getting ready to leave.
c. Teacher had strong urge to smash intercom
d. all of the above.

The worst part about it is that she does this kind of thing randomly throughout the day.

Posted in Philadelphia Schools | 2 Comments »

My School: Focus 46

Posted by aphillieteacher on September 23, 2010

The city has come out with a description of schools that are deemed “persistently dangerous.”  They should have included a photograph of my building because we are definitely the poster child for the following:

To be designated a Focus 46 School, a campus must have an average daily attendance of under 90 percent, more than 40 percent of the school’s population must be chronically truant with 10 or more unexcused absences, or the school must have five or more violent incidents per 100 students, including other criteria.

Maybe the other criteria includes students telling the teacher to f*ck herself when she asks them to put away cell phones or stop their incessant talking (?)

Yes, I have had a very hard day. Teaching three different new classes for five periods  is taking its toll on me. The students, however, seem to have plenty of energy reserves.


Posted in Philadelphia Schools | 7 Comments »

Protected: Anti-Motivation

Posted by aphillieteacher on September 12, 2010

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Protected: When the going gets tough . .

Posted by aphillieteacher on September 12, 2010

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Learning Styles? umm…never mind

Posted by aphillieteacher on September 7, 2010

The New York Times published an article on Sept 6 titled, Forget What You Know About Good Study Habits You can find it here: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/07/health/views/07mind.html?_r=1&ref=education

Aside from the fact that it reports interesting ways that the mind learns and retains information, it also points out that a pillar of “good teaching” has been actually debunked.

Too bad no one told our district about it. Here’s  a paragraph from the article:

Take the notion that children have specific learning styles, that some are “visual learners” and others are auditory; some are “left-brain” students, others “right-brain.” In a recent review of the relevant research, published in the journal Psychological Science in the Public Interest, a team of psychologists found almost zero support for such ideas. “The contrast between the enormous popularity of the learning-styles approach within education and the lack of credible evidence for its utility is, in our opinion, striking and disturbing,” the researchers concluded.

huh. Remember learning styles? Remember being told that if your lessons didn’t address every learning style you weren’t doing a competent job?

My advice everyone: just keep on doing your good work. Don’t stress over whatever is the latest craze in your district. If you wait a few years, they’ll come up with something else.

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Protected: First Day

Posted by aphillieteacher on September 7, 2010

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