July 8, 2008

The Way It Should Be

Last week, I had the pleasure of meeting the retired teacher whom I'll be replacing (who? dammit, I have trouble with those...). He spent about two and a half hours giving me a guided tour of my new classroom, showing me the textbooks for all the subjects I'll be teaching, providing me advice and cautions about various and sundry things and people, and assuring me of two vital things: that he *hoped* I would certainly change the curriculum around to suit my own style, and that he was planning to sub but would not be back for a while, to give the students a chance to transfer their loyalties. (Although I assured him that--especially as a not-new teacher--he was most welcome any time).

Can you imagine the state of the world if every teacher in a new spot had an introduction to their job like that?

In addition, he decided to donate almost two whole four-drawer filing cabinets full of teacher materials (over and above the textbook supplements; these are the kind the individual teacher picks up on their own. I do not plan to sell them, but rather, use them; but if I priced them all out, it's probably in the neighborhood of $2,000 worth of literature. Maybe more.)

As a final gift, when I asked (a bit timorously, I think) about how he organized 8th grade graduation (that task comes with the job), he said: "Call me in April, and I'll walk you through it."

To be sure, I've got challenges ahead. But one guy and couple of hours of his life have suddenly made mine a whole lot easier.


Tami said...

Are you replacing Ed? Love him. He probably doesn't know me, but I know him via mutual friends/relatives. He and his wife just totally rock. I used to work in the cauliflower field with Lynette when I was very very young. Like 6th-10th grade young. She never made me feel like I was the kid and she was the adult...the kind of person who makes kids feel respected and empowered. Anyway, I canNOT believe they are old enough for retirement! Life sure is weird.

Ginger Ogle said...

Got it in one!

He is actually past due to retire, apparently. But he said she has at least a few years left (lucky me--she's the media person and I am going web-crazy as I plan...)

Maria R said...

I've put together a few 8th grade graduations as well, and in small towns, if you want some ideas when the time comes!

EM Lewis said...

Congratulations again on the new job, muchacha! I'm thinking about you, starting the new school year with all your little Monitor farm kids. I hope they behave.

Back in *my* day, they beat the bad kids with a paddle and tied the ADD kids to their desks with jump rope.

I probably shouldn't tell you these things...

Say hi to Mr. and Mrs. Willig for me, when you get a chance.