I received this note in my email during 4th period today:
It was a good moment for it too. I was about halfway through grading the 264 essays written by my students from this lengthy benchmark exam, and about 200 of them are horrendous. It’s rather making me feel like I’ve totally wasted the last six months of my life attempting to teach them anything, because I’ve obviously failed. While I was grading, I wanted to give my students’ brains a break, and was playing the pilot of BBC’s “Sherlock”. It’s a fantastic show, very well done, and my first three periods thought it was really cool, but fourth insisted on playing with phones and talking to each other. I had to go sit by a group of boys in the back, which made it very difficult to grade. It makes me sad when I attempt to share culture with them and they don’t appreciate it.
It’s been kind of a grumpy week. I still don’t have a car, having no time to shop for one, and feel kind of sorry for myself. I called my daddy at lunch for a pep talk; he’s a pastor and teaches religion at his church’s school, and was extraordinarily disappointed by his students’ most recent quiz scores. Apparently, a large percentage thought the New Testament book of Romans was written prior to 1000 BC, and it was written by Matthew, Luke, or possibly Daniel. He reminded me that they buy the kiddos study Bibles, and they highlight all the info in it. At some point, the crummy answers are not a teacher’s fault, but the students’ complete inability to think through a question. I’m not sure if this made me feel better knowing that my dad (one of the best teachers I’ve ever had) has failures of students, or worse knowing that teaching a private school doesn’t magically yield higher-producing students.
My carpool buddy was sick today, so I mooched a ride to the local Starbucks to grade and wait out my hubster. I got their new vanilla blond roast (it’s REALLY good) in a mug. I never think to ask for a real mug but coffee always tastes so much better in porcelain. Plus refills are only 54¢. That was a happy discovery.