Tag Archives: excuses

Making the Grade

I confess my blogging grade is probably somewhere close to a D-. And not for lack of effort. In fact I sometimes start blog entries and press “save now” with all the best of intentions of finishing them later– but alas, I never finish. It kind of reminds me of my students. They almost always have the best of intentions, but they fall short on the whole follow-through thing. However, they are pretty good at giving excuses.

For instance, each morning when I question, Why are you late?
“the bus left without me.” (needless to say, they weren’t there ON TIME.)
“hey, I didn’t even hear the bell” (never mind that you can hear the bell from the street corner)
“well, my sister’s…umm….friend’s…umm…mom’s car wasn’t working” (they don’t even have a sister!)
“ms. acker i can’t walk that fast” (mind you, this was a football player. hmm?)

…and my all time favorite excuse for being tardy is…

“i was across the street at Vons cuz i wanted to buy you a get-well card, but they were all out.” (creative to say the least, (this was the week after I had sinus surgery) but doubtful.

So, I will stop making excuses and start blogging more.

This photo captures a rare moment in my classroom where almost everyone is on task, almost. I know I am supposed to be teaching English and I do…well, I do my best, to teach these future minds of America (thank you Christine) to write and read, and think clearly and analyze intelligently, and spell correctly and when to use their, there, or they’re. But the truth is sometimes I feel more like a mentoring-counselor-job coaching-disciplinarian-tutoring-mom, than a teacher.

On days like today I empathize with the student whose dad’s lost his job, and then review with 2 girls how to use the point-slope form of a line on their geometry test. I explain to another that where it says “skills and abilities” on a job application is NOT the place to list what ability level you got to in the World of War Craft video game. I remind students to “push in your chair” and “don’t forget your sweatshirt.” I write hall passes and give lunch detentions. I listen to stories about his first girlfriend, her first time getting pulled over, and when he failed his driver’s test-again! My students complain and whine and sometimes, literally moan about the work they have to do, but they also share their stories with me, they write honestly, without pretense. They laugh (with or at me-depending who you ask) and they raise their hands with thoughtful, genuine questions.

My days are never boring and almost always fulfilling. I really have no excuse NOT to blog and share a bit more of my day-to-day; my adventures in the everyday.

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