I Am Having A Tough Time

School has barely started and I am already struggling… and it probably isn’t what you think — the students are great. 

I am struggling with what I always struggle with… the curriculum, the TAKS test, what I think my students need to know.  I am struggling with reconciling them all in a manner that does not leave my students feeling beaten down.  My problem is that I question too much.  Sometimes I seriously over-think things.

My problem is that I want my students to learn what they need to know to pass TAKS, pass my class, be productive citizens and be overall nice people, but I want them to learn all of these things while being engaged and having at least a little bit of fun… I know, it is a lot to ask.  So this is the pressure I place on myself when I plan each week of lessons, and I think I am falling a little short.  But, I am trying and questioning and getting feedback from the students, and I am not giving up.

Now, for a side note… when did we stop trying to make learning fun for our students? By “we” I mean us — educators.  I have been talking to some of my friends who have students in elementary schools in Texas, and it just doesn’t sound fun to learn anymore.  Apparently it is all about the TAKS test at the schools where their children attend, gone are the days of carefree recesses, there are no naps in kindergarten anymore… and reading is REQUIRED.  Not required as in story-time, but required as in, the teacher will deduct X-amount of points from your grade if you don’t do your required reading. 

When did students stop enjoying school, discovering on their own, questioning, running around carefree at recess, reading because they wanted to see what Ramona Quimby does next?  When did it stop being fun?

Well, I for one am not giving in to this new breed of fun-less learning.  Fun is good… let’s bring it back.

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Explore posts in the same categories: Learning Should Be Fun, Rant, reflection, TAKS

One Comment on “I Am Having A Tough Time”


  1. I was appalled last week to learn that my ten-year-old sister – who just started 5th grade – has a “layered curriculum” of sorts when it comes to reading. The amount of time each student spends reading directly correlates with their grade. To get an A, they have to read 180 minutes a week! Of course, that’s on top of weekly spelling lists, science projects, fundraisers, soccer practice, etc.


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