Diary of an English Teacher in His Penultimate Year, Redux: It’s Raining and I’m Flying By the Seat of My Pants!

Yesterday I made a video blog so I could test my new microphone, and during part of my little talk there I kind of bemoaned the fact that it had been so long since my last entry, months, in fact. Afterwards, I was struck by this single observation: It took me three and a halfContinue reading “Diary of an English Teacher in His Penultimate Year, Redux: It’s Raining and I’m Flying By the Seat of My Pants!”

Diary of an English Teacher in His Penultimate Year: December 5, 2017

And now for something completely different. I’ve been doing this “Penultimate Year” series now since August, and typically post about once a month, but today the urge to scribble arrived for the second consecutive day. Today, the day after my birthday, felt more like a birthday. I mean, I celebrated a little bit last nightContinue reading “Diary of an English Teacher in His Penultimate Year: December 5, 2017”

#244: On Listening to Students Talk about Seamus Heaney’s Poetry

Over three days I listened to 24 young people talk for 20 minutes a piece about literature, and 10 of those 20 minutes were dedicated to speaking about a single poem by Seamus Heaney. Most of them did fine work, but I couldn’t help recognize and remember and then start to record particular phrases or beginnings thatContinue reading “#244: On Listening to Students Talk about Seamus Heaney’s Poetry”

#75: The InEquity NonPoem (a manifesto)

The InEquity NonPoem (a manifesto)* In my school district we’re having the conversation about equity, and mostly, we’ve been asked to focus on potential inequity between white kids and our students of color and how to minimize or abolish that inequity. Let’s do a quick little statistical analysis, shall we? Of 80 students in myContinue reading “#75: The InEquity NonPoem (a manifesto)”

Teaching Controversial Texts: In Defense of Kalpa Imperial by Angélica Gorodischer

So I wrote a little blog post some many months ago now.  It was 2000 words long.  It was a furious little rant about how one of the books I teach in 11th grade IB English, Kalpa Imperial by Angélica Gorodischer, was being removed from, or at least being considered for removal from, or, asContinue reading “Teaching Controversial Texts: In Defense of Kalpa Imperial by Angélica Gorodischer”