“Hey, I’m Learning,” he said.

“I’m learning,” one of my students told me today as we finished up an activity. “Yes, you are,” I said, “and you will continue to learn as long as you try. It’s not easy, but it can be done. It is a lot of work, but you can do it,” I told him.

When my students first come in the classroom, I have my Dr. Who-like talk with them. Usually I already know what their disability is, but will ask them what is difficult for them, to see what they know. Most of the times they know. Sometimes they will tell me that they can’t read or that they don’t learn the way others do. That is when I tell them that everyone in the class has something or another wrong with them. I let them know that everyone is in my class because they need a little bit of extra help. Not because they’re stupid (yes I use stupid), or can’t learn like everyone else. It’s simply that they need a little extra help, and that’s what I’m there for.

That’s my job, and I plan to be the best at it that I can. So, as always, here’s to continued success!

What I Read Yesterday…

The children were acting very unruly today. I was so stressed out because of what happened last night that I just could not focus. I was so high strung and sleep deprived. I was not a pleasant person to be around today. I needed down time, they needed down time, so I proposed a compromise of reading them one of my favorite books, Thank You, Mr. Falker.

This was my way of saying stop what you’re doing. Much the same way I did last year when I first began Expression. I had the children sit down and instructed them not to talk. Some tried to raise their hand. I impatiently shushed them as I told them that I would not tolerate any interruptions.

“You are going to listen to this story,” I said. I was so grouchy, I may as well have said that they were going to listen and like it whether they wanted it or not.

“Do not ask me any questions, do not raise your hand to speak, do not do anything but put on your listening ears,” I sternly instructed.

Of course there were at least two who tried to raise their hand and ask a question. I politely ignored them. I read the first page which makes reference to knowledge being as sweet as honey. I gave all the students a drop of honey on the tip of their fingers and told them to taste it.

“How does it taste?” I asked.

“Sweet,” they all said. Well, that’s how knowledge is. It is as sweet as honey.

I also stopped on the part where the main character, Trisha, was getting picked on and explained to them that that was the reason why I didn’t let anyone bully anyone else in my class. They were all completely silent by this time.

I slowly read the part where she starts to read. By this time, two of my students have tears in their eyes. I looked at all of them and told them that they could all learn how to read if they worked hard.

“It’s not easy,” I told them. It’s a lot of work, but if you work at it, I promise you will learn.

By the time I finished, you could hear a pin drop in the room. Just the effect I wanted. If you would like to read the review I wrote on Thank You, Mr. Falker, click here.