Drinking the Kool-Aid

Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap

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Apr 16 2012

Just close your eyes and GO

In college, I used to keep a running to-do list with me at all times, with literally everything I needed to  do. Laundry, calling home, and friends’ birthday presents went on the list along with the usual email reminders and coursework. For some reason, as disorganized and catch-all as it sounds, it was the best…

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Jun 07 2011


Today was an absolute pile. First period, my Sly kid threw my entire stack of perfect blue paper down the stairwell right after first period. It would have been some stupid mischevious end-of-year thing if it weren’t MY stack of nice paper that I’d set out for them. For some reason it really made me…

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May 26 2011

Not what I imagined

Out of 61 faculty members who were at our staff meeting yesterday, 24 are black, 13 are Hispanic, and 23 are white. I’d loosely estimated that the majority of the faculty members at my school were black. Wrong. I read a comment by someone on something the recently that said “whenever you find yourself in…

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May 21 2011


White privilege. White anti-racist. White ally. White … hypocrisy. I feel uncomfortable, and as complainy and self-centered as this post is, I promise I’m glad of my discomfort. It’s not that I’m guilty for my whiteness—I don’t think. I think I feel… just pushed. I feel a healthy dose of fear and shame, I think.…

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… written illegally in a composition notebook hidden beneath my Hallway Relief schedule… tricky tricky… Should our ED be harder on us? What can I do to help fix things? What if my PD next year doesn’t inspire me like mine does? How much PR work does TFA SA need to do? What corps members are…

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Apr 27 2011

In Your Dreams

My school’s freshmen are officially my favorite people on campus (don’t tell my babies). I had an amazing time today and yesterday, rotating through the entire freshman class and getting a sneak peek at next year’s student pop. However—for whatever reason this TAKS Blitz thing has been THE most exhausting experience ever. I got home…

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Apr 26 2011

The Real Pre-Sophomores

I’ve always been told that the sophomores at my school are the ‘problem children.’ The faculty tells me they’re the rowdiest, rudest, most boldly disrespectful… but I barely interact with any non-sophomores, so I have nothing to compare them to. Also, I worry that the few instances that do confirm that generalization only do so…

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Apr 26 2011

High Stakes

If I could have picked one day—one day out of the whole school year—to have my Brat be in a good mood, it would have been yesterday. I wanted to pull her aside and tell her how much she means to me, that she only missed it by six questions last year and I know…

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Apr 24 2011

But for the Forest

I really like the act of teaching. I love the call to analyze, improve, learn something, and improve faster. I love (and hate) that my to-do list is always bigger than me and I’ll never grow out of it. I love being the leader, the center of attention, the decision-maker. I love feeling a little…

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I’m feeling sick about these tests. Increasingly, my kids have been making mutterings and negative TAKS predictions during class—and I’m starting to feel like my pointing to tiny successes is making it worse, not better. As the test nears and they become more and more focused on it, I feel more and more like I’ve…

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Apr 18 2011


Ohh, friends… I had the first bad day I’ve had for a really long time. Which is a good thing, I guess. But yeesh. I do NOT miss this feeling. Lost things: I lost my humongous Bag O’ Crucial Things (i.e. school laptop, compiled student work samples for certification portfolio, camera, video camera, purse, school…

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I’ve been thinking about the above question for probably about a month now (aside from all the thinking on it I’ve been doing for the past year—I mean, it was even one of the questions for my personal statement, right?), and I really haven’t hit upon anything satisfactory. But in the process, I have come across a…

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Apr 08 2011


It’s crazy how this job teaches you the SAME things—over and over and over—but more effectively every time. If it were possible to organize all of these lessons and digest them in a logical sequence and at a sensible pace, I wouldn’t have to repeat so many of the lessons I learn. But I’m here…

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