As a teacher, I spend a lot of time designing lesson plans that I think students will not only learn from, but maybe even enjoy. A bored classroom makes for a very long 55 minutes, and it also means that a good portion of the students will drift away for more than just one day of the unit. In today’s world of education, we are asked to teach the Common Core State Standards, and almost throw away the work we’ve been doing for the last several years, and devise an entire new methodology of teaching. All I want to do is teach so that my students learn what they’ll need in order to survive in the real world, and learn much more about who they are as people. Unfortunately, I need to truly pick apart my curriculum, and find new ways to do this within the context of the CCSS.
I do not by any means hate the CCSS; in fact, I actually think we are finally moving in the right direction. It’s just difficult to look at what I’ve been doing over the last decade, and know that some of my favorite units no longer fit into today’s schema. I’m not the first teacher in the history of teaching to go through this change – actually this is really the fourth or fifth time we’ve moved toward a new “catch phrase” – but it doesn’t make it any less frustrating.
When my students leave my class at the end of the year, I want them to more than enjoy 60%, tolerate 30%, and fall in love with 10% of what they’ve learned. Anymore than that, and I’ll consider it a complete success!
My question is this:
What do YOU want to learn in a High School English class?