A Dose of Liberal Political Commentary with a Smattering of Pop Culture.

I teach middle school in real life.

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eoporto said: What’s the difference? Maturity?

ladyofleisuredc said: Is it comparable to 7th? Better?

The maturity level is a major factor. I know people who hate the sass and the way 8th graders act but I like that their personalities are a little more developed. Just a year makes a big difference at this age. The content, as a reading teacher, is more enjoyable for me. Since 8th graders are tested in social studies I get to really play on my history major background and delve into political readings, speeches, and the like. Not to mention, 8th grade is fun! There is the dance, 8th grade challenge, a trip to the smoky mountains with the environmental club, graduation, late lunch, classroom economy. I feel like one of my strengths is preparing students for high school and helping them make big decisions about courses and programs they want to pursue as 9th graders. 7th has been a challenge for me because they are younger and I can’t push the literary envelope like I would want to. I miss that aspect of teaching 8th graders the most.

My principal talked to me about moving back to 8th grade next year. He’s going to, “try to make it happen.” Nothing definite yet though which is going to make me terribly anxious until I know for sure. Although I really don’t think it’s something he would have mentioned if he didn’t think there was a good chance he could pull it off. I miss being an 8th grade teacher, y’all.


So accurate.

(via haygirlhay)

Sassy Sauce: Ingenious Use for Vinegar - i Dream of Clean

Uses for Sassy Sauce:

Let’s say your kids are getting a little sassy.

Ask them if they want to rephrase their last statement. If they say “no,” just spray a little Sassy Sauce on their tongue.

Let’s say your kids are getting a little sassy again.

Ask them if they want to rephrase their last statement. More than likely they will gladly do so.


I don’t even know where to begin.

You know that bitter apple spray people use to stop their DOGS from chewing things? The base for that is apple cider vinegar.

So, I mean I’m not saying having a dog is just like having a kid. But if you’re using sassy spray on your kid you’re kind of making the comparison all your own, no?

(Of course my sarcasm is facetious. I just can’t believe some forms of punishment that people think are normal and okay. Also, I was the kid who LOVED vinegar. So.)


Hey teacher friends! Did you know you can get a free Basecamp account if you’re a teacher?

I use Basecamp for work and kind of love it. 

Check it out!

I know, I know. Your family is different. You do all these things because your kid loves to compete, he loves the travel basketball, she loves the swim team, it’s her life, it’s what defines him. Part of that is certainly true but a big part of that isn’t. Tens of thousands of families thrive in this setting, but I’m telling you, from what I’ve seen as a clinician, tens of thousands don’t. It is a hidden scourge in society today, taxing and stressing husbands, wives, parents and children. We’re denying children the opportunity to explore literally thousands of facets of interests because of the fear of the need to “specialize” in something early, and that by not doing this your child will somehow be just an average kid. How do we learn to rejoice in the average and celebrate as a whole society the exceptional? I’m not sure, but I know that this whole preoccupation is unhealthy, it is dysfunctional and is as bad as alcoholism, tobacco abuse, or any other types of dependency.

That had to be why my 7th period lost their ever loving minds today.

Except that doesn’t explain all of the other days this happens.

The plan to switch from the silent conversations I had planned originally to station work was a brilliant one for most of my classes. And then we hit a wall during 7th period. I just hate that they can’t seem to handle anything fun. It’s disappointing.

Also, I’m so tired.


Chelsea Clinton is the product of two of the most powerful brands in the world. Now she’s finally carving out her own identity—by joining the family business. Read more>

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Asker e-m-e-t-i-b Asks:
Hi April! I'm currently student teaching and am having some difficulty. I really like teaching but I feel like I'm horrible at it. I was just wondering if you ever had the same issue and how you got past it. You seem like a really great teacher and your kids seem to love you so I thought you would be a good person to ask for advice :)
apsies apsies Said:

WEEKLY. Seriously. At least once a week if not more I have a moment where I question my teaching ability and feel like I’m horrible at my job. I think it’s because the enormity of just what we do every day hits me and I wonder if I’m affecting change in the right way, if I’m preparing my students well enough for what is to come, if they’ll look back and think they’ve learned anything at all from my class. Does this mean I’m actually a horrible teacher? No, by all accounts and evaluations and feedback it’s far from the reality. But I think what it does make me is a reflective practitioner, which is a great thing. The truth is: I don’t want to be the teacher who settles and thinks she’s great at what she does every day. If I’m that I’ll never grow or change as an educator. Any new educator needs a mentor to discuss these fears with. If your guiding teacher can be that person for you I suggest you confide in him or her and explain how you feel. This person should be able to give you feedback and help you to improve upon whatever areas you are concerned about. The hardest part is trying not to take any criticism personally, but rather looking at it as areas of potential growth. I struggle with confidence when it comes to teaching and talking through those issues with someone has been critical for my sanity.

I reblogged this a while back because it’s so true, “New teachers are eager and passionate. They are also extremely scared and delicate. They need someone that they can trust. They need someone that they can celebrate with and also someone who will let them express their fears and concerns.”

This fits my instructional coach to a tee. If I didn’t have her guiding me as I embarked upon this journey I’m not sure I would have survived it. I also have a couple of teacher mamas and big sisters in my building who think nothing of my latest cry fest over my fears and misgivings. Find these people. They will be invaluable to you during your progress as an educator. But also, don’t be too hard on yourself. If you like what you do that’s half the battle. Plenty of educators finish school and find they hate this profession. The rest will follow if you have the passion for it and the desire to constantly work on improving your practices.

P.S. Thank you for thinking I’m worthy of this question. Good luck with student teaching!

Too many young women I think are harder on themselves than circumstances warrant. They are too often selling themselves short. They too often take criticism personally instead of seriously. You should take criticism seriously because you might learn something, but you can’t let it crush you. You have to be resilient enough to keep moving forward, whatever the personal setbacks and even insults that come your way might be. That takes a sense of humor about yourself and others. Believe me, this is hard-won advice I’m putting forth. It’s not like you wake up and understand this. It’s a process.
Hilary Clinton, on taking criticism. (via ayabug)


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