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Old 03-04-2006, 04:08 PM   #61
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The saddest part for me as a teacher is what a teachable moment this guy lost. What a critical issue he's adressed! Are there identifable facist elements in the Bush admin? In previous US admins? How have new democracies been doing? What elements *have* to be there for a regime to be facist? Democractic? How does that relate to how our founders wrote the Constitution? What protections did they put in place and how do you think there serving us now? I could go on and on. He could do an entire awesome unit (complete with music from the Boss, U2, the Clash, Dylan, Eminem) on the question he clearly wants his kids to think about but instead, he rants and blows it. Classrooms do better when the kids do more talking. Fools em into constructing an argument if the teacher has a clue about good facilitation.

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Old 03-05-2006, 01:56 AM   #62
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im glad he got suspended, i wish he got fired. these teachers gotta learn to teach what they're told to teach and keep their political views to themselves. no one gives a shit what a geography teacher thinks about Bush. quit spouting off, no one cares what you think, go back to teaching what the capitol of france is.
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Old 03-05-2006, 05:18 PM   #63
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Oh, I think firing the guy would be excessive. Sure, he made a mistake by giving a political speech in geography class. How's he supposed to teach the class where the capitol of France is if he's fired? He shouldn't lose his job just because he made a mistake.
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Old 03-05-2006, 10:10 PM   #64
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That is the point of the suspension. Evaluate the incident as part of overall performance.

There have been other verbal incidents involving teachers where there was plenty of bloodlust for a firing.
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Old 03-06-2006, 12:41 AM   #65
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For fucks sake, you's think the man told his kids to go and kill Bush!

Dread, I would not to be a student nor a teacher at a school that you would have any control over. I think you are great here in interference but your views when it comes to teaching practices are to strict and counter productive to the learning experience.

You make it out that 10-15 minutes of banter throughout the course of 5-6 hrs of teaching is the end of the world. I spent more time daydreaming and thinking of ways to get out of class then the time you are talking about.

But, if I had a teacher, and I had many, that actually engaged me and made me feel as if I was an adult that could really make my own decisions. And that gave me the confidence to go out and discuss this with my peers than when that teacher decides to gain control over the classroom and really wants the kids to pay attention to something that is very important in the cirriculm then he;s got my ful attention!

And for the record, I think what he said was out of line. But i also think that if said in the right way, it is a great tool to make your kids respect you and ultimatly learn from you and themselves
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Old 03-06-2006, 05:48 AM   #66
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Quote:
Originally posted by bonoman
[B]For fucks sake, you's think the man told his kids to go and kill Bush!

Dread, I would not to be a student nor a teacher at a school that you would have any control over. I think you are great here in interference but your views when it comes to teaching practices are to strict and counter productive to the learning experience.

You make it out that 10-15 minutes of banter throughout the course of 5-6 hrs of teaching is the end of the world. I spent more time daydreaming and thinking of ways to get out of class then the time you are talking about.
First of all, in a high school where your class periods are about 50 muinutes long 10-15 minutes is a long time if he is doing it in each class. 10-15 minutes that the students say were happening daily adds up to a LOT of class time over a year.

2nd of all, if a school is not making its mark on the standardized testing, that 10-15 minutes is valuable time for a teacher who gives a shit about teaching what the kids are supposed to be learning.

3rd Schools are under assault in the US. If their standardized testing results are not demonstrating growth, the school within two years has to provide vouchers for the students to attend another school. If progress is not made in three years, then the administrators are FIRED and the state takes over with the ability to fire teachers as well.

So yes, if this teacher is taking up to 15 minuites (Allegedly the tape is 20) out of 50 a day in a geography class to rant about Bush, something not in the curriculum, then yes, I believe disciplinary action should be taken. And I bet, that a MAJORITY of the parents whose HOME VALUE will plummet when the school fails to make the grade will support the administrator.

Within my own town, the school I left last fall is in the top 30 out of around 1500 schools. The school I am in now, is in corrective action. One step away from being taken over. The real estate in the other section of town is much higher. If I am spending 500,00o-800,000 for a home and my home tax money is being used for the school, you can bet your ass I am going to freak out that the school has been taken over by the state. No one is going to want to move into my neighborhood.
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Old 03-06-2006, 08:21 PM   #67
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Like I said, his comments were out of hand.

But what it seems you dont understand is that disscusions that relate to current events and the world outside of algebra and the like can give high school students the oppurtunity to use their brains in different ways. This makes the kids much more attentive to what the teacher is trying to bring across to the kids.

If the only thing, as an administrator, on your mind is test results then you and your school system are doing a great injustice to your students. Because the biggest problem facing education in the western world is kids coming out of the school system without actually knowing anything, they were only able to memorize the material in the short term and they forget it as soon as they walk out of that exam.

Im not saying that you dont see the same problems but your defense of your stance is purely from a finacial point and that makes my stomach turn. These are kids that need to be educated not rush through the system so as not to upset administrators!
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Old 03-06-2006, 08:47 PM   #68
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Quote:
Originally posted by bonoman

Im not saying that you dont see the same problems but your defense of your stance is purely from a finacial point and that makes my stomach turn. These are kids that need to be educated not rush through the system so as not to upset administrators!
If that is all you get out of my stance then I guess there is nothing more to say.

Ultimately, the governement by the people has said we expect our students to know X, Y, Z.

We are measured by this and now are held accountable.

The reality is, if we are not teaching what is supposed to be taught, our students will not pass the tests they are confronted with.

You may have missed my diatribe that good teachers will find a way to teach in such a manner that their students not only learn what is expected of them, but also in such a way that they are better prepared for the world around them.

And for the record, I am a fucking AWESOME educator. Your kids would be lucky to have a teacher/administrator that put into the job what I do. If you feel you can judge me and the job I do from a debate on an internet message board, more power to you.
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Old 03-06-2006, 08:53 PM   #69
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Quote:
Originally posted by bonoman
[B]Like I said, his comments were out of hand.

But what it seems you dont understand is that disscusions that relate to current events and the world outside of algebra and the like can give high school students the oppurtunity to use their brains in different ways. This makes the kids much more attentive to what the teacher is trying to bring across to the kids.
What you do not understand, is that if it were worked into the framework of the curriculum, then it would not be an issue.

[Q]If the only thing, as an administrator, on your mind is test results then you and your school system are doing a great injustice to your students. Because the biggest problem facing education in the western world is kids coming out of the school system without actually knowing anything, they were only able to memorize the material in the short term and they forget it as soon as they walk out of that exam.[/Q]

So I ignore the REALITY of the real world, and lose my job, watch my teachers lose their jobs? the REALITY is that the test scores matter.

Secondly, we are not talking about your average standardized MEMORIZED tests. If you like I will provide links to examples of the expectations of WRITTEN essays by ten year olds that are a part of the assessment. It is not a memorization test. There is more critical thinking on the fourth grade test than I was EVER exposed to at their age.

I have run PLENTY of after school programs and summer camps to suppliment the curriculum.

On second thought....here is a link to all of the student samples and examples of questions that students have to answer. It is not a memorization of facts test.

http://www.doe.mass.edu/mcas/student/2005/
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Old 03-07-2006, 05:02 AM   #70
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This is good stuff for the 4th grade


The Mustard Seed
Retold by Marilyn McFarlane

1 The Buddha was walking on a dusty country road one day when he stopped at the edge of a river to splash cooling water on his face. When he finished washing, he looked up and saw an old woman kneeling beside him. Her clothes were ragged and her face was worn. Her arms were covered with sores.
2 "Oh, Master," she wailed. "I suffer so. Please help me."
3 "What troubles you?" the Buddha asked, looking at her with compassion in his eyes.
4 "Look at me! See my sad lot!" She touched her rags, and she pointed with skinny fingers to her blistered arms."I am poor, my clothes are torn, I am ill. Once I was prosperous, with a farm, and now I am old and have only a bowl of rice to eat. Won't you heal me and bring back my riches?"
5 "You have described life as it is," the Buddha answered."We are all born to suffering."
6 The old woman shook her head, weeping."No, no, I won't listen. I was not born to suffer."
7 The Buddha saw that she could not understand."Very well, I will help you," he said."You must do as I say."
8 "Anything, anything!" she gasped.
9 "Bring me a mustard seed."
10 She stared in astonishment."Only a mustard seed?"
11 "Yes. But the seed must come from a house that has never known sorrow, trouble, or suffering. I will take the seed and use it to banish all your misery."
12 "Thank you, Master, thank you!"
13 The old woman hobbled away, her bare feet shuffling in the dust. She was on her way to find a house without sorrow. The Buddha continued down the road.


14 Weeks later, he returned along the same road and came to the same place by the river, and there he saw the old woman again. She was scrubbing clothes in the river water and spreading them on rocks to dry in the sun, and while she washed, she sang a tune.
15 "Greetings," the Buddha said."Have you found the mustard seed?"
16 "No, Blessed One. Every house I visited had far more troubles than I have."
17 "And are you still seeking?"
18 "I'll do that later. I have met so many people who are less fortunate than I, I have to stop and help them. Right now I'm washing clothes for a poor family with sick children." Gently she placed a wet piece of cloth on a rock.
19 The Buddha smiled. He said, "You no longer need the mustard seed. Helping others is a great virtue. You are on the road to becoming a Buddha yourself."
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Old 03-07-2006, 06:41 AM   #71
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It is challenging stuff.
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Old 03-07-2006, 08:04 AM   #72
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He was on the Today Show this morning, the transcript will probably be posted later.

He said he felt that everything he discussed was within the curriculum, that they weren't his thoughts and opinions, that he was challenging the students to think critically. Matt Lauer said that the particular student seemed to be asking him questions to "egg him on", the teacher said that many students were asking him questions about the State Of The Union address, and he explained how he feels that is appropriate for discussion in that class. He made a "disclaimer" after saying the Hitler stuff, they played that portion of the tape.

He didn't come across as "loony" on the Today Show as he does on the portions of the tapes that have been played
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Old 03-07-2006, 02:37 PM   #73
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there's video from the interview here as well

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/11713011/from/RL.3/

“My job as a teacher is to challenge students to think critically about issues that are affecting our world and our society,” Jay Bennish said on NBC’s “Today Show.”

Bennish told “Today” the excerpts broadcast weren’t representative of the full lecture.
“This is 20 minutes out of a 50-minute class. The rest of the class provides the balance,” he said.

Bennish said no parents — including the family of the student who recorded the lecture — have complained to him. He said all the students’ parents had seen his syllabus and that school officials had approved it.

“My job as a social studies teacher is to argue alternative perspectives and viewpoints so that students are aware of those point of views. They do not necessarily reflect my own views. They are simply thrown out there to encourage critical thought,” he told “Today.”
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Old 03-07-2006, 02:53 PM   #74
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I have based my opinions on what I heard and read, which was that he was teaching a geography class.

If he was not, I would have to examine my position.
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Old 03-07-2006, 02:57 PM   #75
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I believe he said on Today that he is a social studies teacher, I assume the geography class is just one that he teaches.

From what I can recall he said that he felt it had to do w/geography as the SOTU address had a far reaching impact upon other countries, and like I posted previously he said the students brought up the SOTU. I wish they had the whole transcript posted.
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