One Teacher's Voice


Negative rhetoric

[Original post: 11/15/2011]

One of my big goals for the semester is to adjust my attitude.  I’ve discovered how much negative speak I engage in when I’m at school and I’ve been trying, really really hard, to eliminate that negativity from my attitude.  I consider myself a fairly positive person but there have been times it’s incredibly challenging.  We are being taught to talk about our students with asset-based language rather than deficit-based language.  This is also more challenging than one would think but it’s possible with a switch in vocabulary and mindset.  However, when the field of education seems to be toxic with negativity at times, how do I not become wrapped up into it?  How do I approach my own thinking from an asset-based perspective instead of deficit?

Today was a bad day.  It just was.  Nothing horrific happened, it was just a bad day.  So I’m going to allow myself to spread a little negativity and mention some things I am worried, if not scared, about in my future career as an elementary teacher.

  • Negative attitudes.  They are everywhere, and there are a LOT of them in schools.
  • Becoming overwhelmed and burnt out.  I have always known how hard my teachers work but I have a better idea now than ever before.  And I can safely say:  I HAD NO IDEA.  It’s like nothing else.  I feel totally overwhelmed in school right now and it’s nothing compared to what teachers face on a daily basis.
  • Reaching every child.  Is it possible?  I want to believe it.  And about 75% of me does believe it.  But there’s that nagging 25% as well.
  • GOSSIP.  It’s everywhere.  It’s all around.  It feeds the negative attitudes like kindling on a fire.
  • Working with someone I don’t like.  It’s happened before, surely it will happen again.  The difference is it’s harder to avoid people when teaching is all about collaboration.
  • The feeling of futility.  When considering educational reform that is so desperately needed, it’s hard not just just mentally throw in the towel and say “why bother?”  Politicians speak as though they know how to teach better than teachers.
Okay, that’s enough.  I’m going to be able to turn this around, I know it.  Like I said, it was a bad day.  Tomorrow is fresh and new and I can learn from mistakes I made today and hopefully not make them again.
P.S.  It doesn’t help that today one of my colleagues told me that she was offered a full-time teaching position at a charter school in town.  However, she turned it down because it pays $10.50 per hour.  I knew pay was bad, but come ON.  That is just insulting.

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This entry was posted on May 1, 2012 by in Uncategorized.
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