Thursday, May 19, 2016

Day 164: A Crazy Person

State Testing: Day 12 of 14

Christopher Emdin has taken over my brain.
I'm taking notes the way I SHOULD have done in college!

After proctoring tests today, I somehow found myself on my soapbox, talking to my co-proctor about the importance of building community in the school.  I was telling him about this is especially important when you have a neoindigenous population, as we do.

"We need to be having more assemblies, building a sense of family, celebrating the differences of our students while developing a safe space where those differences are accepted!"
"We don't have assemblies because they can't behave in assemblies."
"They can't behave in assemblies because we don't TEACH them how to behave in assemblies!"

I sounded like a crazy person.  I saw the skepticism and resistance in the eyes of my coworker.

The students of color who were in the room, however, were nodding in agreement.

The highest level of engagement that I've seen with my Astronomy students so far this year has been while I was talking about time travel.

I had the crazy eyes, my tone was all over the place, as was my physical body.  At one point, a voice cut through the silence to say "he sounds like a crazy person."

I love discussions of theoretical physics, time travel and science fiction.  I love exploring "what if" questions.  The kids, at least today, seem to enjoy it as well.  They love hearing about things that seem crazy, but in a safe way.

I need to design my classes, especially my Astronomy classes, much more solidly around discussion and interaction.  I need to build a community of learners, of dreamers, of explorers.

I sound like a crazy person.

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