Saturday, August 14, 2010

What d

I didn't write this, not sure who did- it was one of those email forwards that I usually delete. But, many of the teachers I've encountered this summer at workshops are struggling with morale already and school doesn't start until next week.

Besides the fact that 40 years ago most CEOs made 8 times what their employees did whereas today they make almost 800 times as much- for the last 10-20 years politicians and bureaucrats have been trying to impose a business philosophy onto public education. Students aren't products, test scores aren't dividends, and learning can't be standardized.

Sorry, didn't mean to get on a soap box, suffice to say that "it will be a great day when our schools get all the money they need and the Air Force has to have a bake sale to buy a bomber."

Here's the emailed story

The dinner guests were sitting around the table discussing life. One man, a CEO, decided to explain the problem with education. He argued, "What's a kid going to learn from someone who decided his best option in life was to become a teacher?" To stress his point he said to another guest; "You're a teacher, Bonnie . Be honest. What do you make?"

Bonnie, who had a reputation for honesty and frankness replied, "You want to know what I make? (She paused for a second, then began....)

"Well, I make kids work harder than they ever thought they could.
I make a C+ feel like the Congressional Medal of Honor winner.
I make kids sit through 40 minutes of class time when their parents can't make them sit for 5 without an I Pod, Game Cube or movie rental.

You want to know what I make? (She paused again and looked at each and every person at the table):

I make kids wonder.
I make them question.
I make them apologize and mean it.
I make them have respect and take responsibility for their actions.
I teach them how to write and then I make them write.
Keyboarding isn't everything.
I make them read, read, read and read some more.
I make them show all their work in math.
They use their God given brain, not the man-made calculator.
I make my students from other countries learn everything they need to know about English while preserving their unique cultural identity.
I make my classroom a place where all my students feel safe.
I make my students stand, placing their hand over their heart to say the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag, One Nation Under God, because we live in the United States of America .
Finally, I make them understand that if they use the gifts they were given, work hard, and follow their hearts, they can succeed in life.

(Bonnie paused one last time and then continued.) Then, when people try to judge me by what I make, with me knowing money isn't everything, I can hold my head up high and pay no attention because they are ignorant.

You want to know what I make?
What do you make Mr. CEO?

His jaw dropped; he went silent. 

Here's hoping that you all have a wonderful new school year! Remember, when it gets tough, remind yourself WHY you got into teaching in the first place. To make a difference. Share this with as many teachers as you can- and as many CEOs as you want to.

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