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Reasons for Not Maturing 1

 

It’s been two weeks since I got these thoughts about what the reasons might be for a person to not get mature, which is not the same as growing older. And so they have moved me into writing a post about it.

I’m 27 years old and I’m a teacher, an English teacher, and of course part of my job has always been to teach students to behave properly in certain situations. But to have tolerance towards other people’s ideas and respect to the people expressing them does not have to be the opposite to having fun and learning. I’m not getting married in any time soon and I’m not having children of my own in the near future. I also like to tell jokes with my friends, to make fun at ridiculous things, to laugh at my own disagrace and stupidities and certainly, to have a blast whenever I can. My Facebook page is full of irrational thoughts and jokes which some people may find extremely funny and others not at all, but they understand to whom this “special” page belongs to. All of these situations have made people, at least half of them, think of me as a childish inmature man. Maybe, it is because the society I live in is quite traditional and reserved -if you don’t know where I live, I live in a small city called Pachuca in Mexico.

Then one day wandering the streets of Twitter,I ran into this particular tweet which made me laugh and to rethink the way I carry on with my life, and I realized that even though my life is not as perfect as it could be it is certainly a good one and that I am not as wrong as several people might think. The tweet, in Spanish, was “Un adulto creativo es un niño que ha sobrevivido.” In English, “A creative adult is a child that has survived”. Beautiful, isn’t it?

I am not what you might call an artist, I don’t paint or draw, I don’t play an instrument and obviously I have never compose a piece of music. Although I have a blog, I write when I have the right inspiration to do so; despite all of this I absolutely consider myself a creative person. I like to invent jokes in different and so diverse moments, I try to make new activities for my classes, sometimes, I invent stories to explain something. And on my Facebook page I try to put funny thoughts that had occurred to me a few moments before. Finally, and for me the best of all, after I have finished reading a book about techniques or methods that might be helpful to my classes I immediately try to imagine ways to implement them.

Part of my obligation in the school is to plan events for Christmas, Spelling Bee, and this year for the first time ever, Saint Patrick’s Day. It is my responsability to search and print drawings that will be the decoration used for that day. In three different occasions I have had a discussion with a collegue also in charge of chosing the best theme. The first time the problem was that the elves -Santa’s little helpers- had pointy ears and therefore, they weren’t cute enough. The second time almost the same thing happened; we were chosing a TV family for Family Day and I had chosen the families of Rugrats -a Nickelodeon cartoon- but again, for my coworker they weren’t cute enough. And finally, just last week, we had a problem because she wanted something for the stage and I wanted something slightly different for the gate at the entrance, and my question was that if it was strictly mandatory to have absolutely the same figures in both places. The first time I won, the other two she did. For this paragraph I have no conclusion instead I do have a question: Why?… Can you answer my question?

Yesterday, I watched Tim Brown’s video about creativity and play and I loved a statement he said during his presentation and it was something like this: “A child asks what it is but he also asks what he can do with it”. And if the child is smart he will ask the question to himself and he will try various uses for that object. So the imagination of a child is endless and it will provide him opportunities to discover and to invent but it will come the day when an adult will teach the child the “correct” use and tell him to do so. This is reason number two to not become mature.

In following posts I will try to go deeper into what I think the word “mature” involves and why I think being childish is best. Meanwhile, I’ll keep looking for more reasons to stay as I am: immature.

This is the video I mentioned before, totally worth watching. Enjoy!

 

 

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Teacher Evaluations

I have been involved in evaluation for the past two weeks; first, I asked my methodology students to start searching for a class to perform a teacher evaluation and check what methods and/or approaches he or she is implementing. Second, I was asked to perform one in this school I am working due to all the free time I experienced during the Enlace test.

So, I had the trouble of knowing what I had to evaluate. Obviously, I went on-line to find useful and interesting articles on which to base the evaluation, I found a book on Google Academic named An Introduction to Classroom Observation by E. C. Wragg, it seems really appealing, though I cannot read it because of copyright. Nevertheless, I could find several web pages to have a wide idea of what an evaluation form and feedback may be.

What most articles mention is that the evaluator has to be honest and specific with the feedback but every time he has to be respectful and polite. The evaluator also has to bear in mind that the evaluation may be used for several purposes which may include: awards, raises, promotions or even the continuity of the teacher’s contract.

Being said that the evaluation has to be honest, offer suggestions, describe specific situations of the class for improvement besides, it also must be nice and respectful.

From the teacher perspective, the evaluation has to offer a wide variety of self-improvement as well as suggestions to fix those unnoticed errors made by himself or herself. The teacher community must feel comfortable and safe of school evaluations as they are a great means for innovation overall. Besides, it is not the same to be evaluated by a similar or peer than by an outsider from the educational field.

Finally, I hope my peers and I find an excellent means for recognition and self awareness of our teaching styles to offer a much better experience for our students as to our own persona.