1. Major league baseball official scorer.
2. Ice cream maker.
4. Sports columnist for a newspaper.
5. Professional gambler.
Not that I'd ever not want to be an English teacher, but it's nice to think of other lives that one could lead. I enjoy listening to my students explore their future in class. Some of them have a pretty good idea about what they want to become and some have absolutely no idea at all. The kids that have no clue are usually stressed about it and they think they should know exactly what job they should have by the time they're seniors. At our school we have the kids think about it when they're freshmen which I think is kind of ridiculous. Thinking that far into the future seems to be counterproductive in many ways. I wish the guidance counselors/career counselors would just talk about being a good learner in school and a good worker in class. Instead they give these really annoying compatibility tests to see what career may be a fit for the kid. It's completely hilarious but some of the kids really take them seriously. I had one student get "laborer" as a result. Seriously?? You're 14 and some computer program tells you that you're cut out for manual labor for the rest of your life. I had five kids get back "mortician" and a couple receive "shepherd" for their future job. Now to me, those results are funny but to the students, they really take it to heart. But shepherd? Kind of awesome.
You Owe Me by Miah Arnold
This is an excellent essay about a teacher who teaches poetry and prose at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, a hospital for cancer-stricken children in Houston, Texas. The opening line says it best:
The children I write with die, no matter how much I love them, no matter how creative they are, no matter how many poems they have written, or how much they want to live.
I couldn't imagine doing that job but I'm very glad that someone does. The essay is both heartbreaking and uplifting and it is definitely worth a read.
Essay: 10 of 10
The author has a nice, easy, respectful style that gives gravity to the situations but never crosses over into syrupy. There are so many great lines in this essay it's impossible to quote my favorite. The reader feels Arnold's pain, frustration, gratitude, and utter helplessness with working with these children.
Teachability: 10 of 10
There is a lot to analyze in this essay. I'll use it in my AP class after spring break and have them find the rhetorical devices but mostly I just want them to read it. It's a fantastic piece of writing.