Tag Archives: school

Kids With Guns (2)

After my article on school shootings, I immediately wanted to do more, although it was relatively hard work, just because it’s not so easy to find helpful information. But I really want to dig deeper into this and find out more, find similar threads and patterns and ways the media deals with this. So, today, three more examples, all from 2006.

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Inventing the Child – Unschooling and Normal Families

I was asked to write not only about all those bad children’s books, but also to provide some good examples. What’s the point of criticizing all the books your children want to read, if there is no alternative? Sure, I’d still say that you can read the problematic books anyway, but point out the problems to your kid, but it is better of course to just have a good book that follows your own ideology. So, that is what I’m doing today. Be aware, there are many more examples, but in my recent attempt to write shorter articles (just in case that’s a reason people are turned off from reading them), I’ll just focus on some and come back to all of this again in the future.

You can read the full post here.

Kids with Guns (1)

When I wrote about the Marysville School Shooting two weeks ago, I discovered this list on school shootings on Wikipedia and it fascinated me endlessly. I wasn’t sure why until I started doing research because I wanted to write more about this topic. It’s fascinating to see that while almost all of those incidents are reported in the news, it often isn’t more than the initial “someone has been shooting at a school” report, but rarely any follow-ups. So it’s very hard to learn what was behind those shootings, to read about motives or reactions. I guess that’s not surprising for our media that it is only interested in the shock value of such news and doesn’t dare to dig deeper. Still, there are some follow-up articles and as I realized I might get obsessed with this topic because I endlessly wanted to look up everything, I decided to turn this into a series, focus on a couple of incidents and come back to that long, long list again (and again).

You can read the full post here.

Student Looks at Teacher

Here she comes. Damn, I hoped she was late today. Why can’t she be late? It’s not like we can’t wait a bit longer to start the lesson. It’s not like anyone cares. Including her. That’s why she is so late so often, right? She probably has better things to do than teaching us. And we certainly have better things to do as well. Oh, look at her, she didn’t prepare anything again and just checks the textbook to see what she can do today. She didn’t prepare at all! And she never does. Why should we care about any of this shit if she obviously doesn’t? Such a waste of time. And I can’t look at my phone because she’ll confiscate it right away because she has the power. It’s so stupid.

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Looking for Easy Answers in the Marysville Pilchuck High School Shooting

I’m always fascinated (not in a positive way) by school shootings, not so much because of gun control issues (that’s a given, I guess), but because I can’t help but wonder how terrible living in our culture one must feel to decide to kill others. Especially young people. You can’t explain it away with psychological disorders or video games because it happens too often and the perpetrators are too different to allow simple categorization. All of them have one thing in common (and this includes people who have been doing this decades ago), they live in this society, in this culture. The 14-year-old boy who started shooting in the school cafeteria in Washington on Friday is no different. He is different from other shooters and I wonder if that’s a reason that this shooting is not as publicized in the media as others.

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Learning, Not Studying

For a long time I always talked about “learning” for exams until a native speaker pointed out to me that it should be “studying.” Apart from being an embarrassing mistake to make for an English teacher, it brings me to a relevant point about when I use those words. I use them before exams and I have learned over the years that one of the most astonishing things you can say to students is “You don’t need to study.”

You can read the full post here.

You Belong on the Radio – 1980 Edition

UnknownOf course I couldn’t do a year’s theme week without looking at this year’s songs. Because there is only one 1980 week, I decided to look at the top 10 of the top songs of the year from Germany, the UK and US simultaneously, since they also overlap pretty much. Is the music of 1980 as dark, detached and depressing as everything else this week? We’re about to find out!

You can read the full post here.

 

Why Being a Teacher Sucks (Sometimes)

My holidays are almost over and once school starts, I will probably return to more thought pieces on school and general things. But to get ready for school and after Detachment, I thought I could spend two posts on reflecting what exactly I like and don’t like about being a teacher. And as I dutifully learned in school, I start with the bad things now and continue with the good things on Sunday. I heard this will strengthen my conclusion. So, in no particular order and without an end in sight as I write this now, some of the reasons what’s bad about being a teacher (and if you haven’t seen, I explained why I’m a teacher already).

You can read the full post here.

 

Detachment (2011)

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(spoilers ahead)

Detachment is a movie about school, so it’s made out for me, obviously. It made me very angry. The movie is directed by (yeah, yeah, “the infamous”) Tony Kaye and I would put most of the blame for the failure of the movie on him, especially since he is his own cinematographer. I’m not sure if the script could have been filmed better (as Bryan Cranston claims, who has the most unnecessary role in the movie, so the feelings might be mutual), but the direction seems totally misguided. But even apart from that, the movie is full of clichés and school tropes, thereby neglecting its own purpose of trying to show what school is like. The great actors are mostly wasted. Yes, Adrien Brody is great, they’re all great, but why have some big names in the credits only to make them say one or two lines? The editing is sometimes off (look at the first principal scene) and the camera work is pretentious. But the biggest problem I have with the movie is the message it sends and the contradictions it gets caught up in. A movie doesn’t make me angry often, so I want to dive into why in more detail.

You can read the full post here.