Friday, July 21, 2006

Summer School Fool

I ran into one of my colleagues today. She just finished teaching the second session of summer school. When I first saw her, I thought that I was looking at what was her "after" picture following a two month oxycontent bender. Seriously, I wanted to wrap her in a blanket and feed her milk through a dropper--just until she was strong enough.

Here's what I don't get about summer school. It's an entire semester that I typically toil through to get my students to pick up a sliver of what is presented... but packed into three weeks. Three months is a killer. I can't even imagine three weeks. I mean boxers don't train for fights by having three fights in between and people call that sport barbaric! What does that make teaching?

But we've got bills to pay and people have done a lot worse for extra cash--I think.

And let's not forget the kiddos. All those lessons jammed into three weeks for kids that couldn't handle the three month regiment in the first place. How is that effective? I've always told my kids that you can't just cram the night before a test--that you need to absorb the material. Then they get to summer school and that goes entirely out the window.

"Okay class, you'll need to know the mottos, birds and nicknames of all 50 states for tomorrow."

That statement couldn't be anymore true. They will know it for tomorrow and tomorrow only.

And for those that would like to point out that there are successful students who go to summer school to get ahead and they are more than capable of handling what is thrown at them; I say, great, an ocean's worth of obsessive, anal behavior in a thimble size schedule.

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