Back to the Classroom

Decorative Photo: Woman looking at computer screen in surprise

Photo by Karolina Grabowska

When do we stop questioning?

January 6, 2022

Here I am. I'm back in the classroom. After 8 years outside while I created curriculum and trained teachers, I've come back and just finished my first semester. Holy crap. A lot has changed.

When I left the classroom, Google Classroom had not even been invented yet. I had just pioneered 1:1 devices with my school district using iPod Touches. This was back when you could scroll to the bottom of apps in the App Store. So why did I do it? Why did I come back to the classroom?

Honestly, I've never been happier than when I was tucked away in my high school classroom with my students. We try new things, mostly successfully with a few spectacular fails. We trust each other. We keep working on things until we figure it out. We, mostly, LIKE each other. It is inspiring. It is exciting. It is challenging. It can be draining. At the end of the day...I have a smile on my face. Isn't that what is important?

This time, I decided to step away from public education and work at a small independent school where I added a few middle school classes to my repertoire. Second Holy Crap. Middle school students are not like high school students. Is it just me or are they always trying to get away with something...anything! If it there is a piece of lint from my floor that I discouraged them from touching...they will find a way to touch it.

So my question is this: Why don't high school students challenge everything the way middle school students do? Is it a case of maturity? Have they been beaten down to do what the teacher says as the path of least resistance? Or, are these two things the same?