Saturday, December 18, 2010
Goodbye Trailer High
*Spending time outside is a daily occurrence. A walk to the office, the library, across the deck to another English colleague's room, or even down the block for lunch in another trailer means we've had lots of fresh air.
*A bathroom in the classroom assured that there wasn't a reason for students to leave our room. I haven't given many passes out of class.
*The colorful and crazy boots, umbrellas, and hats have been great fun. After the first few miserable days of pouring rain or snowstorms, our students have been well equipped to deal with the elements!
*I have worn jeans a lot in the last few years. I've liked that. Jeans are my favorite clothing, but it is about time to start dressing up again.
*A feeling that "we're all in this together" means that the staff worked to make perks for the kids, and the administration worked to make perks for the teachers. There were a lot of people working to be thoughtful.
*The kids have rarely complained, no matter how bad the conditions. I guess they knew that complaining did no good. They just dealt.
*Flexibility was a necessity. Everyone had to be flexible. It was nice to see rigid people just going with the flow!
*And finally...snow days. Administration knew how miserable the kids were in frigid temperatures, so school was sometimes called off even if the snow wasn't terribly deep. Safety became an issue, and everyone at Trailer School appreciated it.
There has been a lot of kindness in the last few years. We have had a community that cared about the horrible conditions; administration who worked to make things as pleasant as possible; teachers who went the extra mile to make things easier on students, without sacrificing academics; and kids who made the best of a bad situation. Test scores didn't suffer. Education went on. Our students have been proud of taking things in stride. And now they know that bad times come, but good people endure.
I wouldn't want to go through this again, but looking back I realize that I have shared a life-changing experience with some pretty amazing people. And I can't believe I'm saying this, but... I wouldn't have missed a moment of it.