Saturday, February 14, 2009

Mr. Teenie Bopper

There is no time during the day for me to tutor my AP kids. Most of them are in class when I am free. To help them out, I decided to stay late on Thursdays.

Staying late is not a problem, finding an empty room is not as easy. A door to door search was our only option this week and after several tries, we found a room with a teacher sitting at the desk. I asked if the room was being used. Mr. Teenie Bopper answered "I like to do my work here. There must be another room available." I answered "Not that I saw and told the kids to sit down to begin work." Mr. Teenie Bopper was not happy. He left the room and went in search of another room. He returned after a few minutes, resigned to the fact that we were not going anywhere.

The above picture is the place I affectionately call my office. It is no more than two chairs, sometimes three or four, placed outside the teachers' cafeteria. Here is where I sit during the day to help my students. We have no choice. Packemin HS has no empty space in the middle of the day. Things are still tight by 10th period, but not as tight. I'm not sitting in a hall when there is a room available.

Sorry Mr. Teenie Bopper, the room is not your private domain. Unless you have a class in there, it is free for any teacher to use. You better learn to share or you won't make it in this system.


Anonymous said...

While I understand where you are coming from, I can also understand what the other teacher is going through. Many schools have lost their teacher lounges. And that is unfortunate. I remember back in the 70s teachers used to have a lounge to do their work as well as a lunchroom. Those days are gone.

I never would bring work home because once I got home, I was too tired to look at it. So I would stay and work till 6 pm in the quiet of my room. But then after-school took over many classrooms, and the principal didn't care if you needed your own room.

The teacher's lunchroom has so deteriorated so many teachers had no where to go during their prep. They would sit quietly in the back of their classroom and do their work until 2 certain cluster teachers complained. Instead of working out a solution, my principal just ordered classroom teachers to leave the room. Thankfully one of the clusters that complained allowed me to stay--the other didn't cover my class.

A teacher's prep period as well as tutoring time should be valued and accommodations be made to find a quiet place for all concerned. This is why I am so upset that Republicans did not see new school construction as a "stimulus". It seems students are an "expense" and not a commodity worth the investment.


ChiTown Girl said...

Wait a mean you don't even have a classroom to call your own? Seriously?! That's just wrong. Sorry you have to put up with this nonsense.

Pissed Off said...

Elementary school is different--teachers have their own rooms all day.

In Packemin, we all share all rooms all day. No one has possession of a room except for when the class is meeting.

D Patterson said...

I'm a first-year middle school teacher in Manhattan. I read these posts and think, Man, I'm glad I don't work with you. So so glad.

From the countdowns to your vacations to the bitter little digs at everyone who isn't as dedicated and as bright as you, such a great argument for ending tenure as we know it.

ChiTown Girl said...

Oh my holy hell! How the hell can you guys function like that?! You must have to drag your stuff with you all day, huh? You must be one hell of a great organizer to pull this off. I could NEVER do it! You are a saint! Obviously for SEVERAL reasons!

17 (really 15) more years said...

Hey D Patterson (and what a clever handle that is)-
From your holier than thou attitude, to your blantant disdain for somebody who is 10 times the teacher you will ever hope to be, I am happy to say I don't work with YOU.

If the first round of layoffs doesn't get you, perhaps the end of tenure will. Be careful what you wish for.

Pissed Off said...

Patterson--you sound like a real piece of work

Nothing wrong with count downs for vacations. I work hard and deserve them.

And I am so glad that most of the people I work with are not jerks like you.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, D. Patterson. YOU'RE the one who shouldn't get tenure. You can only hope to be 1/100th the teacher PO'd is. You base your premise on the tone of a teacher's blog, D. Patterson. Tenure is based on your ability to teach, not what one writes on their blog. Better develop your analytical skills, Patt. You're gonna need them!!

ChiTown Girl said...

Apparently D. Patterson is still lost in the naive glow of a first-year teacher. For someone who is "so so glad" to not be working with you, I wonder why he/she keeps reading your blog. Speaking as a teacher with 20+ years under my belt, I can't wait to see if D. Patterson feels the same way in another year or two. Maybe he/she should check out some other "teacher blogs" for a dose of reality, and snap out of Fantasy World.

Justin said...

That stinks about the room situation. I work in a city High School, and we have tons of rooms. Once 3pm hits though, I am out the door. Doesn't mean I am not dedicated, I just can not stay in a building for 8 hours straight.

D.Patterson - I don't think anyone's dedication can be belittled based on them wanting a room to work with, nor their looking forward to vacation. We all look forward to vacation, and I love teaching. I also love having time to rest and recharge my batteries.

Anonymous said...

D. Patterson,
Another reason I will not support your election.

This vacation came with a cost. And if you do not understand that tenure isn't automatic, you are not a teacher nor should you be one.

Elementary teachers have a room, but not cluster teachers. Many have to travel from room to room unless their school has a space for them.

When I went to HS back in the stone age, I seem to remember teachers having their own rooms.

Enjoy your trip. You gave up many vacation days for it and your pension money to help save the city.


Pissed Off said...

I usually runout of the building as soon as I can also. Thanks for all the support.

Patterson will have people like us to thank if he ever gets tenure and then runs into some serious problems whether they are his own fault or not.

Hopefully he/she will grow up before it is too late.

Rick Patterson said...

Ow. I actually share a last name with that other Patterson person.
No relation at all, however, particularly in temperament. I guarantee that DPatterson's attitude will have changed comprehensively in a couple of years, unless he/she is on track for administration, in which case the lobotomy will have made that adjustment more dramatically.
I can assure you that I am 100% behind Anonymous and POT with regard to looking forward to well-deserved breaks.
And seriously, you New York teachers NEED to publicize the conditions you people are working under. This is like the Third World, people! We should send UNICEF in to give you guys a hand--and some photo ops to give the rest of America some idea of what you have to deal with. Ridiculous!
I solemnly swear I will never complain about my teaching conditions ever again. By contrast, I work in heaven.
I respect you all even more than I did before...

Anonymous said...

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Does managing a well-established blog such as yours require a massive amount work?
I'm completely new to blogging but I do write in my journal on a daily basis.
I'd like to start a blog so I can share my experience and feelings online.

Please let me know if you have any ideas or tips for brand
new aspiring bloggers. Thankyou!