Lisa Biber has been teaching high school English for ten years and yoga for the last three. When she’s not in the classroom or reading a book, she’s with her two kiddos and two stinky dogs.
I stepped back into my classroom for the 11th year after another summer of learning and growth. I was armed with new ideas, a thicker suit of armor to protect my sensitive empath soul, and, of course, a heart full of unconditional love. I ditched my plans to go over the syllabus on my first day, choosing instead to have students engage in a series of stations to break up the monotony of their day, giving them a chance to move rather than to sit and get.
I have a reputation in my building; I’m aware of it. I’m too nice. My classes are too easy. I don’t teach the kids anything about the real world.
There are so many things about our old-school educational system that are flawed, but none break my heart as much as this: if this child does not pass my class, if he fails, he doesn’t graduate.
By high school, though, I had internalized this “real world” dialogue and found myself constantly looking to the next milestone in my life. Part of this had to do with the childhood I had, but most of it was that I had been taught the life I was living wasn’t, well, real.