A Blog Covering D.C. Education [ABCDE]

Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
Mar 13 2011

The Next “Survivor”?


A fellow teacher forwarded me a hilarious email a few days ago. It’s up to you to decide whether it’s hilarious because it smacks so much of reality or because it is a vision of teaching taken to a parodied extreme:

Next Season on “Survivor”…

Have you heard about the next planned “Survivor” show?

Three businessmen and three businesswomen will be dropped in classroom for 1 school year.  Each business person will be provided with a copy of his/her school district’s curriculum, and a class of 20-25 students.

Each class will have a minimum of five learning-disabled children, three with A.D.H.D., one gifted child, and two who have limited proficiency in English. Three students will be labeled with severe behavior problems.

Each business person must complete lesson plans at least 3 days in advance, with annotations for curriculum objectives and state standards.  They must create, modify, and organize their plans according to the varying needs and abilities of their students.  They will be required to teach students, handle misconduct, incorporate technology, document attendance, write referrals, correct homework, make bulletin boards, enter grades on the computer, complete report cards, document benchmarks, communicate with parents, and complete school reporting forms. They must also stand in their doorway between class changes to monitor the hallways.

In addition, they will complete fire drills, bus drills, and lockdown drills.  They must attend school assemblies and forego instruction time accordingly.

They must attend curriculum development workshops, faculty meetings, department meetings, and other required trainings. They must also tutor students who are behind because of absences, provide extra help for those who need more time to comprehend the material, and strive to get their two non-English-speaking children proficient enough to take the state tests.  If they are feeling sick, tired, overwhelmed, or frustrated, they must not let it show.

Each day they must incorporate listening, speaking, reading, and writing into the program. They must maintain discipline and provide an educationally stimulating environment to motivate all students at all times.  If all students do not wish to cooperate, work, or learn, they will be held responsible.

The business people will have access to the public golf course only on the weekends, but with their new salary, they will not be able to afford it.  Lunch will be limited to thirty minutes, but will typically involve eating at their desk while trying to keep up with email.  The business people will be permitted to use the restroom at only certain times – or during class if urgent, as long as another survival candidate is available to supervise their class.

If the copier is functioning, they may make copies of their materials before or after school. However, they cannot surpass their monthly limit of copies nor can they always expect to have staples.  The business people must continually advance their education, at their own expense and on their own time.

The winner of this Season of “Survivor”…. will be allowed to return to their job!!

Pass this to your friends who think teaching is easy, and to the ones who know it is hard.

The question now becomes: “Would you try out?”

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3 Responses

  1. G

    It smacks of reality…a little too much!!!

  2. Stephanie

    Only 2 ESL students? That seems low.

  3. A.

    Great post!

    The total number of students is actually 30-32 and next year it will be even higher.

    Also, in middle school, we have to take the kids to and from lunch and eat with them, along with disciplining, monitoring, and somehow trying to woolf down our food in 25 minutes and also manage to use the restroom somehow. That sure sound like survivor!

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Really, "A Blog Covering Dilemmas in Education": A (former) English teacher's reflections…

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