Most of us have no idea just how good we have it.
Normally I avoid political topics, but as an educator I feel that I must call attention to something. Lots of people devalue knowledge as being useless and not having any practical use. Why should I learn algebra? Who cares about The French Revolution? What do we need art for?
I’ve had middle school students of mine tell me that they don’t feel they need to know any of what we have to teach them because they’re going to be in the NFL or sing on national TV. While I don’t want to squash their dreams, I always try to remind them that knowledge is indeed power and that an education is truly a valuable thing, no matter what profession you have.
Many politicians who conspire to make your life miserable each and every day are keenly aware that this demographic of lazy-minded people exists. In fact, they count on the people who can’t look at the big picture to get them elected. Without educated voters standing in their way, they would gladly exploit us all even more so than they already are.
So all I’m asking is that you just don’t stop learning. It is worth it. Allow your goals to be enhanced by your education, not divorced from it.
Rosie before grooming.As an added bonus, Daisy appears in the second photo. They have both been stir-crazy thanks to the rainy weather, and now they can sit in the sun again.
Evolution is a fact, not just a theory. This is the ways things work in nature. That’s not to say the entire process is not spiritual. In fact, the deeper you look into it, the more it inspires an almost religious sense of awe.
Where did ants learn how to build ant hills? Is there an ant college of architecture? Do spiders learn how to create web patterns on Pinterest? Were honey bees inspired to become kamikaze pilots after watching old WWII movies?
Yes, the universe has an intelligence of its own but the design is actually evolution. You are a product of your environment and so is every other living thing. It’s all interdependent causation. “This is because that is.” Why else was Darwin obsessing over the shapes of birds’ beaks in the Galápagos Islands?
Because without life, there might as well not be any universe. How can all of this be said to truly exist without living creatures’ awareness of it? It’s the old “tree falling in the woods with nobody around” conundrum. And by extension, without looking at the patterns in nature that shape life as we know it, there might as well be no insight into the mechanics of the entire universe.
Yeah, there’s an intelligence behind the whole design. If we can approach it rationally instead of dogmatically, we will still be awe-struck by it.
Need to vacuum the carpet in the room where I meditate. The dust particles wreck havoc on my sinuses each time.
Been trying a method of naming. Meaning, I am training myself to be aware of different states of mind by naming them. For example, if I am driving and the person ahead of me is going 20 in a 35 MPH zone, I have an impatient mind. When I look at the shrinking number in my checking account and the growing number on my credit card balance, I have an anxious mind. When I come home from work to my family, I have a happy mind.
Awareness of impatient mind, anxious mind, happy mind, and all of the other minds should help me to resist getting swept away In a torrent of stress and irritation. All I can do is try it.
This is a type of awareness that can be practiced all day, and not just while sitting and breathing. It’s like checking the radar to see if a storm is approaching.BTW, here is where I read about the naming method: http://www.viacorp.com/addiction.html
Like it or not, you are their leader.
Your students are many, you are but one. Learn to be more charismatic, and they will listen to you and not to each other.
Engaging them is more important than pummeling them with facts. With engagement comes an innate desire to learn independently. When a student’s mind is engaged, she will continue to learn even after she has left your classroom.
Be enthusiastic about the subject you teach! Set the right example! Never admit that you are bored or unmotivated because they will follow that example.
Every teacher is a public speaker and a public performer. You might not like it, but you need to get used to it.
Save your humility for the teacher’s lounge. In front of the kids, you are a star athlete, the absolute best at your game!
Control your own mind. Reflect, meditate, pray, whatever helps to calm you when you can spend time alone. This is important. If teacher’s mind is unruly, then students’ minds will be even worse.
Your classroom is your territory. Interactions with other adults outside of your classroom should not seep into it. Do not get angry or resentful toward adults and take it out on children. Your classroom should be a sanctuary dedicated to the subject you teach, not to making small children feel like they’ve done something wrong.
Avoid checking e-mail, texts, etc. while teaching unless it is an urgent situation. Not only can such things be inflammatory to your mood, but they are distractions.
Better to channel Superman than Batman. A teacher should be an inspirational figure, not a frightening one.
Be consistent with discipline. The same rules that you make in August should still be in effect in May.
Do not let your mood make penalties more or less severe than what they would normally be. This is much easier said than done.
Be as fair as possible with students. They are keenly aware of being treated differently than their classmates.
If you want monotony, go work in an office. If you don’t want to take your work home with you, go work in a warehouse. A successful teacher is adaptable to new situations and is always planning, even in his sleep.
All classroom management should be centered on compassion. Next comes consistency and keeping your word. If you say that there will be a consequence, you must enforce it.
Keep an open mind. You don’t know everything. Even though you are a teacher, you can still learn from your students.
Keep an open heart. They are not machines and neither are you. It won’t always be cut and dry. There will be days when they drive you nuts and there will be days when they cause you to smile. Work for the smile days.
All of the better things I’ve done in my life have been either written down or drawn on paper. Thus far, nothing digital has been as good.
I am a proponent of positive thinking. I agree that constantly focusing on the negative puts you in a bad mindset and you tend to only see the bad things in life. On the other hand when you reflect on the good, you tend to see a lot more of the good stuff.
So a positive mindset is not what I take issue with. It’s people’s motives behind using “The Secret” that I am dubious of. It’s just another American, quick-fix, instant gratification philosophy. We want the universe to serve us like a magical genie. We want things from it and we aren’t thinking of reciprocating.
The human brain is just a fractal of the universe. We are the microcosm, it is the macrocosm. Yes, our thoughts do shape our reality, but where is the sense of awe and reverence for the great and splendid cosmos? How audacious we are to approach the vast, incomprehensible universe as if we were spoiled, privileged children!
The other thing about “The Secret” is the whole chain-letter mindset. Think good thoughts and good will happen. Think bad thoughts and bad will happen. Are we still not over the whole dogmatic seek reward and avoid punishment idea? The only difference is that instead of some omnipotent God handing it out, it’s our own minds.
We still need to be satisfied with an explanation of how everything works. This is not to the detriment of humanity because it is indeed the foundation of science and rational inquiry. But then there are the shysters who use pseudo-science to convince us that things like “The Secret” are based in fact.
Any time you hear about some mind-over-matter philosophy like “The Secret”, they make references to quantum physics or quantum mechanics. Quantum physics is a relatively new field of study that even physicists are just starting to get a grasp on.
Knowing that the average reader is going to sit down and read “The Secret” way before he’s going to read a book by a guy named Neils Bohr (cause gee, even his name sounds Bohr-ing) the shysters use it as the “scientific” explanation behind their bill of goods. Quantum mechanics is really just the 21st century equivalent of The Ether; nobody really understands how it works, and yet it provides an explanation for all kinds of wacky stuff.
Look, if “The Secret” works for you, that’s fantastic. Positive thinking is a great thing. But examine your motives. Are you just out to get something from the cosmos, or do you want to make yourself one with it? Can you really handle getting whatever you wish for? Can you find something worthwhile even in a negative experience?