The walls may finally fall now

5 05 2009

I was in the shower earlier, and was thinking about the meaning of the title I have given this blog: “Walls Finally Fall”. I dimly recall having heard this portion of a line from a song a long time ago, when I first set this blog up; it was playing on the radio station I had logged in to.

The meaning of the title, I have increasingly found, changes for me depending on what I come to writing thoughts down with. On some issues, the walls I envision go no further than the four other people in my family. On others, they reach out to what I do for a living, my career and current (pre)occupation.

I am an educator, a teacher, a “facilitator”, as the snobbishly educational would say. I facilitate learning and other wonderful things like that. But I have come to realise that my job involves much more than this. I encourage students to come in during their study halls (although sometimes when they want to come in I have to turn them away because of a meeting or something like that); I answer questions as honestly and as frankly as I can (although they can be quite, quite embarassing sometimes) because my youth need to know these things and they’ll learn about the things in college – some preparation now does not hurt, in most situations; I spend time with my students, even though I’ve been busy many afternoons with rushing off to class and so on; I have listened to my students; and most significantly, I have always tried to facilitate self-acknowledgement and recognition.

I don’t know what brought this post on, except it irks me when people think teaching is just about classroom – or “instructional” – hours only, and neglect what is actually going on. The goodness, the love, the care, the time and the energy… and it annoys and saddens me even more when students begin to see it that way too.

Ah, something to mull over some more…

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2 responses

6 05 2009
hannah

my friend, be comforted! There are many who appreciate your doings. I think your philosophy of education really matches what ics visioned things to be too. I am often amazed and sometimes wonder whether students get in the way of your work (prep and grading). But i soon realized that you have chosen to take the tough road to balance classroom teaching and actual “counseling”, something not too many teachers dare to do. It’s actually so much more rewarding when you interact with them beyond the classroom level and extend your regards to them. Definitely a win-win situation that’s worth the risk! Great thoughts!

7 05 2009
vanessamanchester

I appreciate your encouragement, Hannah. I gave out a couple of course evals yesterday and got some really helpful feedback for next year. I think the problem with what I’m doing in school is sometimes that the automatic respect some teachers get bypasses me because I’m more students’ level than above when it comes to issues like the ones mine need to talk about, so it’s hard to detach from that relationship proximity.

Then again, maybe that’s just me…

Thanks for your comments!

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