Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Hawk Therapy

The first picture worthy thing I saw driving home from the first day of work was the hawk above. It was high in a pine, so I maxed out my zoom and braced against the JEEP to deshakify the picture.

I had spent the day in meetings ... talk about "do as we say, not as we do." ...
These days teachers are constantly told by their nonteaching administrators ... " Don't lecture, give ownership to the students, break up your lessons, be creative, it's not you as giver of knowledge ... you facilitate." They send us to training after training to learn to be creative (can you really learn that?) break out of the "stand and deliver" mode.
Then, when it's the administrators turn to "teach" us during faculty meetings ... what do you suppose they do?
Hours of sit and listen, read along with me, ...wait, was that a micro-rant?
In a week of "preplanning" ... one day is reserved for us to actually plan and think about our lessons. The other 4 days are filled with meetings.
Dang ... am I still micro-ranting ... has it grown to a mini-rant?

Let's stop this silliness and look at birds.

This Mississippi Kite prefers to perch and deliver.
I saw this kite perched high enough to catch the 6:30 pm light, so I stopped and walked towards it.
While scanning the vicinity I saw one, no wait ... two, no there's two in that one tree, so that's 4, and there's another off a little in the distance ... so five kites perched in a handful of old gnarly oaks that towered over the brushy scene.

The two together in one tree lifted off simultaneously and wheeled about, but everybody else seemed content to just chill where they were, so I was able to photograph them. (again zoomed to the max with no support)

Shy kite. This tree is as interesting as the bird to me ... lots of twists.

Here we have a therapeutic kite demonstrating grace even if you've had your feathers ruffled.
One more to deruffle there , dude.

Do not give in to the dark side of the force.

By the time I got the, "Hey, where are you? Supper's ready." call from Emma, the sun had set too much for even treetop pics.
Just as well, my time was up, and I was already feeling better about sitting through another day of meetings on Tuesday.

Which I'd better go do right now, he said, glancing at the clock.
Have a terrific Tuesday!


pablo said...

Have fun learning how to do what you've been doing for twenty years. I'm just grateful that you could grab a few minutes to make a post.

Anonymous said...

Just do the "CAT" thing while in your meetings. Act like your'e paying attention to the lectures and when they're not looking, go ahead and do what you want to do. I think your administrators need to take a few FC courses on teaching. Try to endure, remember your happy place!

Bro J

SwampAngel65 said...

Beautiful kites! We don't see them down here. And the pic of the hawk is REALLY a nice one.

I hope the upcoming year is good for you and you have agreat bunch of kids, eager to learn...wishfull thinking, I know.

Susan said...

Beautiful birds! Nice and peaceful. Yes, let's have a terrific Tuesday!

threecollie said...

Oh, dear, you have a right to rant. When I think of all the creative lessons you have described herein...I will simply never forget the banana peel and candy wrapper in the earth-filled aquarium. I'll bet many of your students won't either. Where do they get off telling you how to teach.
Love the kite photos and I agree...the outdoors is so healing...

caroline said...

OMG, they read out of the same back to school book in South Dakota! You are describing our pre-service days to a T.
Part of driving home through prairie grasslands and ponderosa pine is searching for the "theraputic kite" on the way home, sometimes I am late for dinner, too. Kites are mythological creatures in SD, but there are turkeys, deer, meadowlarks, magpies and co. to find along the way.
Caroline in South Dakota

Laura said...

That first pic of the hawk is pure header material!

Beautiful pics. :)

Btw, per your last comment on my site, Kathy at "Just The Right Size" had an excellent tip for fire ants, using coffee grounds! I was wondering if it would work on your sweet corn crop?

Anonymous said...

FC those pictures are great and it just sits their so proud. thanks jabo

Floridacracker said...

Teaching is so different from that beginning time. So many "other duties as assigned".

Bro J,
Thanks for that good advice.

Thanks, the hawk was in good light and that helped!

I hope yours has been just that.

If the meetings were actually about teaching techniques I'd not be grousing so, but they tend to run towards NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND DATA CRUNCHING AND ACCOUNTABILITY FORM FILLING.
Not teaching.

I guess school bureaucracies are the same all over.
Glad you have that peaceful drive to reflect and refresh.

Thanks on that hawk. He was very well behaved.
Coffee ... hmmm. I'll have to look into that.

So glad you liked it. Today the skies are all grey with rain.

kathy a. said...

oy about the data crunching.

those are some fine birds, though.

Aunty Belle said...

sorry, Honey, I jes' cain't sit still on this --youse no "facilitator." Facilitators coordinate among equals. The kids need someone wif' knowledge to impart in a disciplined way.

Nice hawk.

Miz S said...

Aw damn, I commented earlier but I must have messed up the word verification. ANYWAYS. Gorgeous pictures. That sky is 9/11 blue, and the hawk is beautiful.

As for the school meetings...I'm right there with you. Why can't they give us a reasonable amount of time in our classrooms to prepare for the onslaught? It's stupid.

Floridacracker said...

Kathy A,
It's amazing ... NCLB is complete insanity.

Aunty Belle,
I'm right there with you and I make sure they know that until they graduate, we are not equals.

Miz S,
Seems universal ... this need to meet.
Our admins don't even have the school class schedule done yet!!!!

Sharon said...

We had orientation yesterday and today, and I have to take child 1 back on Friday for make-up because they had her schedule so messed up, we waited in guidance for 1.5 hours and then had to leave before we could be seen. Welcome back! LOL

Floridacracker said...

Okay, that sounds like situation normal around here.

Doug Taron said...

Sounds like you needed some hawk therapy. That kind of meeting would drive me nuts.

@Aunty Belle- Preach it, sister!

Thunder Dave said...

Four days of meetings and you're complaining? I should be so lucky! I usually have them double stacked so that I leave one half way through and join the next one already in progress!

At least we're all lucky that you're the one shaping young peoples minds, while I'm trying to reshape the adults! ;-)

Floridacracker said...

Today is time uninterrupted ...so they say.

But, meetings are your job.
Mine is in the trenches and offbutt.