Sunday, October 15, 2006

historical misconceptions

God, I love my new job. I should take a photo of the view I have from my classroom door because it looks straight out of English-teacher-fantasy-land.

I turned in my resignation just before someone else (long story--another reason to be glad I'm gone), so the other district let me out of my contract, to my great relief. Good things come to those who wait? Or maybe I just got lucky. Very lucky. My counterpart/long-term sub had an exceptionally difficult time last week when a student went into premature labor....

So now I'm teaching English 9, nearly an identical class to the one I taught for three years in Minnesota. It is fabulous. Even the class sizes are ridiculously small due to a reduced-class-size-bond-initiative that passed a few years ago. 22 is the biggest. I told you it was ridiculous.

We jumped right in with MLK's "I Have A Dream" speech last week. I dug up a Google video of it and played it for them on Friday. You'd be surprised (or maybe not) how many young kids think that MLK was assassinated during his "I Have A Dream" speech on the mall in Washington, D.C. At least three students asked me separately if I was going to show the part where he gets shot. What a frightening thought--that he might have been assassinated in the midst of that inspirational speech in front of the thousands of people, or that a high school teacher would play the live footage of the assassination in front of students.


Blogger James said...

The new job sounds good. I didn't know he was shot during the speech; I must have missed that part, but I do know - courtesy of students past - that he freed the slaves, which makes me wonder if he really wasn't shot but just died of really old age.

3:28 PM  
Blogger Colleen said...

i'm so glad you are happy! it is good to see you write like this in your blog.

and i so envy your class size...i have one class of 88 and another of 96.

7:54 PM  
Blogger RC said...

huh, that is an interesting thought that your students had about mlk's speech...thanks for sharing's one of those "humm sort of post."

--RC of

9:28 PM  
Blogger Old Man Rich said...

If only he had been shot. right at the end. Just so you could use the line 'now there's punctuation for you'.

6:06 AM  
Blogger Jessica said...

James: Ah, yes, that would explain a lot. It would especially explain the student reaction when I pointed out that King was standing in front of Lincoln: "He is? Where? Wait a minute, Lincoln's a statue?"

Colleen: I've seen your stacks of paper and am in no way envious. It takes way more charisma than I'll ever have to teach a lecture hall of 96. Go get 'em!

RC: Two more reasons I enjoy teaching: the "humm" moments and the reinforcement that these kids really do need to learn a lot.

Rich: You're a twisted character. I'll be laughing all night now and feeling horribly guilty about it.

7:50 PM  

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