Okay. So, I have tried to project and maintain a positive attitude towards our state testing this year, but my resolve is beginning to wane, and enough has become enough. Yesterday, by the end of the day, it had become clear to Ms. Tamura and me that we needed to tack on another day of testing with over half of our kids still not done, so today will mark our seventh consecutive day of state testing. And while this is the certainly the right–thus, easy–accommodation to make for our kids, it comes at a cost: seven days of instruction that we will never get back, days that could have been put to far better use. Of course the greater cost is perhaps the toll it is taking on the kids. And yeah, I know, I spoke of their resiliency last Saturday, but they, too, resilient or not, can only bend so far. Oh, they’ll be fine–they are resilient–but I worry about the deeply-seated disillusions they already possess sinking them even further into their disenfranchised views of this thing we call education. It seems we could do so much more right. I dream of a day when education becomes a cherished, invaluable experience for our kids, a day when they come to love it more with each passing year, instead of hating it more as they make their way down our not-always-so-hallowed halls. Yeah, I know–me and my pipe dreams.
Anyway, today is it. Tamura and I can no longer forfeit any more class time, so I will put on a happy face and cheer the kids on, thanking them for their diligence and dedication as they prepare to summit Mount SBA today. Crazily enough, not all will reach the peak and will have to continue testing tomorrow and beyond, but now it will be outside their LA classrooms, taking them out of other classrooms, away from learning. Enough.
On a brighter note, having read my post yesterday morning about my needs to make the “ideal real” next year, one of my students Kiersten, offered me her video camera. She discussed it with her parents, and they all agreed it would be for a good cause. Some readers may remember Kiersten’s “Why Do We Procrastinate?” video from Independent Learning Project #1. Regardless, this young lady understands movie making, and her very generous offer of both equipment and help comes as a warmly welcomed and much appreciated support for my journey next year. Thank you, Kiersten. I am so excited to learn from you.
Happy Tuesday, all.