Showing posts from 2017

Phone Dunked

My electronics are slowly dropping out of my life. My SLR was stolen a couple months ago, and today my toddler dunked my Smartphone. The loss of my camera still rankles, but the missing phone just brought relief. I've got a love/hate relationship with that device and considered getting rid of it many times.

Once, my phone went missing Erev Yom Kippur and I didn't buy a new one until the end of Cheshvan (5 weeks later). I didn't miss it. In fact I wrote a great piece about the 5 weeks of serenity. In my quest for perfectionism I never posted it, but I'll dig it out at some point.

So I'm thinking of holding off this time...

I'm done with "smart"phones.

Done with 6000 messages.
Done with entertainment apps.
Done with my kids using my "personal" device.
Done with always being on-call.

Just done.

The Grand Dump happened as we were getting geared up for the park. I was hanging laundry. Mendel was outside with me, holding my phone. That normally wo…

Should I go Through With It?

The bottom line is, I need to be at peace with whatever decision I make. It really can work both ways. This, then, is the dilemma of choice: Choosing.

There's a recurrent theme on this blog (and in my life!) I'm a teacher. I'm a mother. And a person somewhere in between... I constantly strive to hit the perfect balance. I'm sure I'm not alone in this struggle. Currently the struggle is taking shape in the number of subjects I've committed to teach. Roughly two weeks ago I gave notice to my head of department that I'd like to drop a subject. The transition period was (is) rife with regret. I just can't let go. I keep rethinking the decision.

Intriguingly, a student asked me if the Tanya had any advice for decision-making. I loved the question - I could so relate. My nature is so indecisive and when choosing between right and right, well... the responsibility is on me and it's just not too fun.

On my Shabbos morning walk I churned out the following so…


Rusnning late Hair a mess Hasent eanten breakfsta Stains on her dress
Shoes on the rwong feet Lunch salpped together Quicker than she thought She could evre
Manage to complete A tsak like that Oh there she gsoes Ms. Mally Mack
Cat'n spell a word Tries hadr to rhyme Ms. Mally Mack Is just never on time
Slieds into her seat A couple minutes after Attendance was tken And now theres laughter
Teacher shakes her head With a  soryy sigh Little Mally Mack Began to cry
Shuffles her feet Out the saem sdoor Feels tired and hveay Limbs so sore
Principle passes In the hall onec more "Oh sweet girl, There's a solution I'm sure."
"Cat'n spell a word Tries hadr to rhyme I'm Ms. Mally Mack Just never on time"
"Don’t cry, don’t fret" Principle said "There's hope for you, Light ahead
"Some people are punctual Accurate to a fault Tick every box Each I's got a dot
"But when it comes to passion Spontaneity and ideas We turn to you,…

Guide on the Side

I'm going away. School has hardly begun and I am leaving my students for nearly two weeks. I cannot adequately articulate the nerve-wracking anxiety this situation creates. I can see a benefit though. Besides for the actual trip, the choice to leave my students has helped to crystallize for me the role of the teacher. 
In my quest to move from "Sage on the Stage" to "Guide on the Side" I started to diminish the role of that guide in my own eyes. Sure, I belevied my classroom would be of greater use to my students if I was the guide on the side instead of dominating center-stage. Primarily because of a meme like this: 
Another similar idea was a graph I once saw about information retention. I'm making up the figures here, but the general gist was listening = 5%  retention and the percentage of retention climbed as the activities became more and more hands on. 
So a strong part of my intellectual mind agreed with the advantage of student involvement and stude…