At this time in my life, I am a teacher first, and then a poet. Hopefully, with retirement, this will change.
I have joined quite a few social media parent groups to see what parents are saying about school in the fall. First of all, let me commend you on your large participation numbers. I wish I could have gotten this kind of response from all of you at parent conferences, email correspondence, and classroom need requests. As always, I am grateful for those that do support my classroom endeavors.
I do understand that teaching five days a week at school is a beautiful thing. I can make sure my SPED students are assisted, my slow readers get my attention, and perform checks on mastery before I move ahead to new concepts. Five days a week in the classroom is the ideal scenario.
I have read your pleas for a five day a week return, and I have noticed you fail to address me. The teacher. So, I have just a few questions….
1-Will you provide the cleaning supplies I need for my room? I usually buy these with my money, but I will need more than I can afford.
2-If I get sick, will you fight for me to get extra sick days from my school/city? And if not given those days, will you pay my bills, so I don’t lose my home?
3-Do you realize that if I get sick, a substitute will take my place? This substitute may or may not be qualified to teach Susie how to read.
4-Will you blame me if your child gets sick?
5-And lastly, and the most important to me, will you ensure that I don’t get my 92 year old mother sick, that my dear friend does not transmit the virus to her newborn, and that my rookie teacher will be able to play safely with her nephew?
Until you address these concerns, I can’t back your desired plan of five day a week, in the classroom scenarios…..
What a week. I have watched smart people act stupid, people seek to silence others, friends rally to assist each other, chaos, quiet in the chaos, and worry as my daughter goes to work each day because her job is essential to you and your supply of toilet paper and hand sanitizer. I also watched in dismay as Chunky the squirrel brought down the entire bird feeder, as he was robbing it.
There are pivotal points in your life you will always remember such as the birth of a child, the death of a loved one, 9-11, and now Corona. But during those extreme events, life goes on. It changes you, but it goes on. I weeded and strawed the blueberry patch yesterday, I prepared my two weeks of online lessons, I shared cocktails(not once, but twice ) with my daughter this weekend, and I chatted with my 91 year-old mom on the phone. I also watched friends being placed in dangerous work situations, I saw social media threads deleted because truths were told, and I read loving texts from my sweet sister.
To what does all this equate...that I love and care for you--my family and friends. That I urge you to be kind, to use your voice, to find normalcy in bizarre situations, to definitely have cocktails, to call out people who seek to silence you, and to never be a Chunky the squirrel.
The house is quiet, only the furnace is chatting. The temperature has dropped yet again, Virginia is a tired and hungry toddler when it comes to weather. Kelly moved the furniture in the den around a bit, and now there is a desk by the back window. The house now has five different desks in it. We are a house of watchers and wordsmiths.
In July of 2017, I purchased the 1938 Cape Cod home in Virginia. This blog will recount how this home has helped me to deal with loss, to handle stress, to become a better me, and how moving here inspired me to begin writing again.. Shout