David grunted when he heard me articulate the plan today for the class. The ha-rumpf came when I announced that the last half hour would be time to work on the production of their Lord of the Flies PowerPoint presentations.
"Excerpt" of teacher - student exchage...post grunt:
Mr. Rodoff: Why the grunt? Would you rather not have time to produce in class?
David: It's not that. I just don't want to do this.
Mr. Rodoff: You don't have to do it, but this is an opportunity.
David: For what?
Mr. Rodoff: To think. To consider. To refine your communication skills.
David: May I go to the bathroom?
In that last half hour, every student worked on their presentations, askings questions, sharing progress, and considering the purpose of their presentation design.
David managed to download a free font.
Later in the day, I saw David in the hallway rolling the mobile computer lab from one class to another. He was all smiles and determination.
Mr. Rodoff: You seem to be enjoying pushing that cart.
Mr. Rodoff: Why?
David: It's a lot more rewarding to me than anything else that goes on here.
Mr. Rodoff: I'm going to the bathroom, okay?
I love the aforementioned words. They are the core of this new era of educational reform and they serve as a constant reminder that I am an agent of change.
I enjoy the simplicity of the above word. It reminds me that I can leave a room with ease. However, it also serves as a glaring reminder that there are Sisyphus-like students. They navigate a landscape no less absurd than those written about by Camus and are willing to exist by pushing something from point A to B.
Eight hours a day.
Forty hours a week.