Monday, December 3, 2007

role and purpose

Sometimes my chest seizes up like I'm under a massive, soul-crushing amount of stress. These moments are damning and liberating because I want the feeling to evaporate, but I trichotillomania my way to a tolerable level of pseudo-comfort.

Rip, rip.

Do you have any stress-ers? Here are some of my more common ones:
  1. Twins
  2. My job
  3. Blogging
  4. Coaching
1. Going from two kids (both currently under the age of three) to four is, well, you don't need any whiz-bang mathematical prowess to deduce that's a 100% increase. Oh, and the questions about twins are constant sleep-deprivers:
Will my wife need a C-section?
Will they come early?
Will they be premature?
How long before we can hold them if they are premature?
What if one...?
What is the other...?
What if I...?
2. This gig I got goin' right now is somewhere between ephemeral and illusory; part high school popularity, part watery mirage. The '08-'09 state budget is a summer-time issue so knowing whether or not the grant will continue (and with it, the funding for my position) is one big David Blaine magic trick; could it be? maybe. no way!

I'm spending a lot of think-time devising a powerful platform to prove to my district's Great Contract Creators that any tech-driven initiative requires a sustainability plan that includes a Tech Integration Specialist. Really, can we just keep putting computers in the classes and not provide on-site, mission-critical professional development? I don't think so, but I know that beyond the occasional ew-ah presentation I have absolutely zero sway when it comes to the allocation of district spending.

3. Why are there so many friggin' questions about blogging? I only wish my students would ask a meager percentage of the questions that I find myself constantly asking about this topic. Heck, for my students, any topic! Ask something that has some depth and meaning! Take ownership over your own learning! When there's a problem, solve it! And I want to quote Vanilla Ice (who doesn't?), but when he muses:
If there was a problem, yo I'll solve it
an apoplectic moment of verb-tense agreement ensues and I'm left with hollow edicts and staring at the ceiling.

4. Mesmerizing observation: high school students go to parties. And at those parties, said high school students drink. Sometimes, a neighbor calls the police. And the police show up and then they bust and bust. Once in a great while, one of the busted is a player on the team I coach. Now there's this part of me, the part that attended high school and went to parties, that wants to grab that player of mine and say:
You're an athlete! How on Earth did you get caught? Rrrruuuunnn!!!
But another part of me, the part that works at a high school and believes in things like accountability and responsibility, wants to grab that player of mine and say:
See ya! You can try out again next year.
But that's heartless. That's cruel. And if that student were one of my would-be twins, then I'd grab that child of mine and say:
You've made a mistake and I hope you learn from it. I'm extremely disappointed with you. I still love you. Now, tell me about your day.
And where's your sister?


alexanderhayes said...

Perhaps Prude needed confirmation that some of us actually still use our genitals -

Taylor said...

I'm not understanding that last comment.

But this is one of your best posts. I like how you tied everything up.

kenrodoff said...

@ taylor: thanks for the compliment! This post was one of those liberating, a lot on my mind posts where it felt cathartic to write it all.

@alexanderhayes: why are you calling her 'prude'? me's confused.

erin said...

Loved this post. And I couldn't agree more with you that a coach is a MUST! But be encouraged, that even if the funding does end, you can never (and I don't believe you were in the first place) return to being "just" a teacher of students. Your google calendar alone can attest for how much you are being sought after for your training and coaching skills. You know too much at this point to keep it confined in your own classroom. So while I will be one of the first to vote yes to fund a position such as yours, I also know that you are doing ALL that you can right now and are greatly improving the understanding and use of technology to make a difference in the teaching at SHS.
The unanswered questions of our future ignite motivation for our present.