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Re: I need to VENT/Intercity teaching....WHAT TO DO?


From: Curt James (curt_james_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Sun Feb 11 2001 - 05:40:25 PST

Subject: Re: I need to VENT/Intercity teaching....WHAT

lia wrote regarding inner city schools:

> > Question 1: What is the key to you think to begin

> > to prepare new teachers
> > (and veterans planning a change) for these
> > classrooms? I would be very
> > interested in this.
> > Question 2: How can we work to improve/
> > eliminate these battlegrounds?

The Austin's wrote:

> IMHO - the answer to both is to have beginning
> teachers spend more time in
> the classroom. I don't believe that an hour
> here and there doing
> observations is enough. Being there at the
> beginning of the year would help
> the new teacher see how experienced teacher
> sets up the classroom, enforces
> discipline plans, etc. etc.

This is so true and it doesn't only apply to inner
city situations. Teachers need more "in classroom"
experience and less pedagogy.

I substituted in a city school on an emergency
certificate during my undergrad. I remember the first
time I told a disruptive student to go to "time out":

"I'm not goin' anywhere you $%&*in' #$%&*!"

[Okay, hmmm, this wasn't covered in my notes...]

There was actually a "panic button" (intercom system)
on the wall if the students became too unruly.

To answer your question, there is nothing like
experience to teach you how to handle these
situations. As far as preparation goes, perhaps
visiting an inner city classroom and shadowing one of
their teachers would be a good first step.

These students need love and want to be shown respect.
 Like all students, these students do desire limits
even if their behavior might indicate the opposite.
Discipline is appreciated and needed! All of the
students won't be "wild", but you should know how to
react (or not react) in the face of wild or eccentric

Also a thorough review of learning levels and
medication needs of all your students will help any
teacher know what and who they are dealing with.

To answer your second question of how to improve the
battleground... it's not a battleground. It's a
classroom and given specific consequences and shown
true respect all students respond in a positive

Find ways to see your students *outside* of the
classroom: eat lunch with them, chaperone field trips
or dances, supervise ISS or the time out area, start a
club, be creative - how can you show these inner city
(or any) students that you truly care about them?

Many students have no one that gives a rat's derriere
about them (or that's how they feel). They'll do
_anything_ to get some of that much needed attention
that they don't get at home.

I don't know where I read this, but I think it applies
to the mindset of many disruptive students, "Even
negative attention is better than no attention at

As long as I'm tossing my $0.02 in the kitty...

Regarding SPAM: I've used an ISP called PAOnline as
well as AOL and three of the "free" internet providers
- FreeLane (by Excite), Juno, and NetZero, and the
only provider on which I received excessive spam and
other trash email was America Online.

It's not this list. It's the ISP.

Hope everyone has a great week!

My long-term substitute position as middle school art
teacher is going very well. The display cases are
finally filling up with artwork and the students are
all screaming for dirt! (They can't wait to
experiment with clay.)

Pictures coming soon to:

Art Ed certified K-12/PA
long-term substitute art teacher
grades 6, 7, and 8
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