Saturday, April 02, 2011

Do you know about poetry slams?
They are all kinds of awesome.
Poetry is made to be enjoyed aloud so if you can, follow the link to youtube. However,  the first poem I've linked  is also copied below from Taylor Mali's webpage below so you can read it even if you can't see and hear his amazing performance.

What Teachers Make  (performed by the author)

What Teachers Make, or
Objection Overruled, or
If things don't work out, you can always go to law school

By Taylor Mali

He says the problem with teachers is, "What's a kid going to learn
from someone who decided his best option in life was to become a teacher?"
He reminds the other dinner guests that it's true what they say about teachers:
Those who can, do; those who can't, teach.
I decide to bite my tongue instead of his
and resist the temptation to remind the other dinner guests
that it's also true what they say about lawyers.
Because we're eating, after all, and this is polite company.

"I mean, you're a teacher, Taylor," he says.
"Be honest. What do you make?"

And I wish he hadn't done that
(asked me to be honest)
because, you see, I have a policy
about honesty and ass-kicking:
if you ask for it, I have to let you have it.

You want to know what I make?

I make kids work harder than they ever thought they could.
I can make a C+ feel like a Congressional medal of honor
and an A- feel like a slap in the face.
How dare you waste my time with anything less than your very best.

I make kids sit through 40 minutes of study hall
in absolute silence. No, you may not work in groups.
No, you may not ask a question.
Why won't I let you get a drink of water?
Because you're not thirsty, you're bored, that's why.

I make parents tremble in fear when I call home:
I hope I haven't called at a bad time,
I just wanted to talk to you about something Billy said today.
Billy said, "Leave the kid alone. I still cry sometimes, don't you?"
And it was the noblest act of courage I have ever seen.

I make parents see their children for who they are
and what they can be.

You want to know what I make?

I make kids wonder,
I make them question.
I make them criticize.
I make them apologize and mean it.
I make them write, write, write.
And then I make them read.
I make them spell definitely beautiful, definitely beautiful, definitely
over and over and over again until they will never misspell
either one of those words again.
I make them show all their work in math.
And hide it on their final drafts in English.

I make them understand that if you got this (brains)
then you follow this (heart) and if someone ever tries to judge you
by what you make, you give them this (the finger).

Let me break it down for you, so you know what I say is true:
I make a goddamn difference! What about you?

The The Impotence of Proofreading (tee hee, this one is funny)

and just one more, because I really just had to

Totally like whatever, you know?


Doug said...

There's fighting back.

lime said...

yep, i posted this over on facebook. i think my idiot governor needs to see this.

quilly said...

I had a store clerk dis me once because I am a teacher. She said it was too bad I didn't work for my money like other people. I could have called the manager and had her fired. Instead, in front of all of the people standing in my line and the ones on either side of her, I calmly said, "Weren't you just telling the person in front of me that your own two kids drive you crazy? Let's put you alone in a room with 32 ten year-olds for 6 hours and see how much constructive learning gets done, shall we?"

I left her embarrassed with half the people in the store laughing at her, and I was nice. She is so lucky she didn't get me on a bad day.