miércoles, julio 06, 2005


as if you didn't know this already...

i am an educational blog snob. i am quite happy with most of the links on my blogroll but may need to do a little summer cleaning for those of you who never update. consider yourselves warned.

why do you think certain bloggers, like ms. frizzle and hipteacher, make everyone's bloglist? do you think it's sheer popularity, "interestingness" or "safeness", what? they're not particularly controversial or bitchy (and certainly don't curse as often as this marinera) and often have your standard inspiring teacher stories, but am i the only one who gets bored reading other people's lesson plans and long-winded self-critiques? i like hearing about the craziness (holla at hatter and mistah babylon) and the tears (nod to miss megan). although in all fairness, frizzle's blog is the first really good ed blog i ever read, so i have to give her props. and a link.

but while i'm being catty... while i go to certain "experts" for my ed news (see the "todo sobre educacion" links to the left), i think certain topics don't even justify posting, such as edwonk's recent piece on dress codes that ends like so:

My own personal thought is that if teachers wish to be treated as professionals, they should start by being dressed professionally. This means that both men and women should dress for the classroom, and not for an evening at the local dance club.

you know what? i wear business casual (nice dress tops, knee-length skirts) AND flip flops (the thick-soled kind, not rubber). and i have a nose piercing. does that make me less of a professional? my shoewear does not have any correlation whatsoever with my teaching. i think i should be a role model for my kids but i don't think it makes sense for me to show up in hose and heels when some of my kids bring their school supplies in a grocery bag because they can't afford a backpack. i have a friend who teaches 2nd grade at my school whose arms are covered with tattoos... in FACT, his latest forearm piece was designed by yours truly. should he have to cover them up to be a better "professional"? as long as he doesn't have obscenities, nude women, etc., i don't see how this is a negative influence or model for his students. several of my students' parents have tattoos. are those inappropriate?

i try not to talk about race a lot on this blog aside from things that directly relate to my students being 100% hispanic and 100% english language learners. but a lot of what edwonk suggests seems to ME to be coming from a very white, middle-class point of view, not to mention that it stinks of the dress norms from that same slice of society. i'm not saying that because some of my kids' parents dress like cholos y cholas that it's appropriate for me to come to school in selena wear (she's a role model, remember?), but i also think wearing your stereotypical rich white man uniform is not going to help my students and their parents look up to me more. but that's just this angry young brown girl talking... ("frijolero" begins in the background as la maestra fades out)

*update: mommy prof likes gustavo's idea about uniforms and gives a parent thumbs-up to teachers dressing reasonably, not necessarily "professionally". yay mommy prof!

I agree. Professionalism has nothing to do with the way one dresses. I used to work at a computer company where we were forced to work and wear "professional attire", para que, digo you, because everyone was completely unprofessional.

I work at a university now, and it's very laid back (very Austin), but people look at who you are and your work ethic more than how you look. I teach my computer classes in shorts and a regular shirt. In fact, college students respond more to me when I do not appear as an authority figure but as an equal. The faculty and staff relate to me because they tell me (in my evaluations and I am evaluated every day) that I am approachable and do not come off like a jaded stiff suit.

Tatoos, long hair, shorts, chanclas y naguas--don't matter. It's what you do for the kids, how you inspire them, how you get to them and teach them things that counts in the end.
Ditto. Re: popular blogs - that's a whole other post for me. I do know hipteacher in the real world. We got our Master's together. But that was pre-blogging.

I agree that professionalism in terms of dress code is overrated. Being able to relate to kids is important, as well as being comfortable. Race and class (and perhaps gender) definitely play roles in this realm, but I believe it always does.
Can you imagin having to wear business atire and then run around the playground with your students? Damn, I don't know about you guys but when I used to sub, in many elementary schools I also had to play the part of PE teacher. I think in this setting comfort is the best option.

How about uniforms for the kids instead?
Aw, another shout out. I feel special. I am, however, going to steal your line about us either being smartasses or dumbasses who don't realize the difference! Loved it.

Some blogs I read regularly in teacher blogland. Yours, of course. Madhatter because she's hilarious (and it sounds like she's a damn good teacher too). Babylon because I always laugh and feel better about my own school and job. Mary's now that I found her because she's a very interesting person. And a few others that my tired mind can't think of at the moment.

I am suprised by some blogs. I think a lot of nonteachers read blogs like hipteacher's. I don't say that to demean her blog in any way, I just think that's the type of blog that people outside of this field can relate to, being that it is more sentimental than others. I do think she has an interesting writing style, though.

I know we all have our individual blogs, but I once thought it might be fun to have a teacher group blog (at least with the people whose blogs we like the most). Then again, I don't know how much we'd actually write it in. Besides, I love commenting on all your blogs anyhow, and that wouldn't be as much fun with a group thing.

On a different note, what's up with me being labeled a teary blog? Do I not talk about farting and vibrators enough? No more sentimental crap from me! ;)
megan, i was referring to the posts about how you make your students cry. i certainly don't think you're sappy or anything like that!
Oh yea, I have made some students cry, haven't I? I don't think I should be put in the category of a "good teacher" because of it! LOL
I just discovered education blogs this year and I haven't been all that impressed by them. There are a few that I love (like yours), but some of them just seem way too syrupy and self-aware.

I used to teach in a very laid back district. I wore dresses and Birkenstocks every day my first couple of years for the respect factor since I looked really young (I was teaching HS) but now I would be comfortale in jeans if they were allowed. I am now working in a fancy-schmancy district were we are expected to wear slacks at the very least. It is a very multi-cultural area with lots of Muslims and Hindus who wear their native garb. I want to wear my native garb, but since I'm white it would be frowned upon (I'm from Oregon so my native garb is jeans, nice shirt and birkenstocks).

Carrie (queenoframbles.com)
educationwonk is often quite full of it. teachers should dress professionally...that is appropriate for their profession...that is whatever they can wear that is comfortable, appropriate for youngsters and young adults. Like César says, "It's what you do for the kids, how you inspire them, how you get to them and teach them things that counts in the end. "
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