If the closing of my first year school year was a season finale what would it be like? This thought popped in my head during my morning run as I was anticipating receiving my contract for the upcoming year. Here is what I came up with!
Note: some of the events are overdramatized in order to add suspense.
Scene 1: The Mail Room
(MR. MILTON opens an envelope that contains his contract for the next year with two checkboxes – one indicating that he will return and one indicating that he will not. MR. MILTON sighs heavily appearing unsure of whether or not he will return.
MS. PALMER enters the mailroom and tears upon a similar letter)
(excitedly) Did you get the letter yet? Mine just came!
Uh…not yet. Must have got lost in the mail. (awkward chuckle)
Don’t worry! I’m sure it’ll sort itself out.
Scene 2: Mr. Milton’s Classroom
(MR. MILTON attempts to do a review activity with his students)
Our World History class really has been a love story to democracy*. We started off with the Absolute Monarchs and were introduced to this new way of thinking…what if PEOPLE had the right to rule themselves! The Age of Enlightenment and the democratic revolutions that followed ushered in change to the world. Let’s call this the Honeymoon Period. Like in relationships things do get rocky…with the Industrial Revolution and Imperialism…(we pick up this analogy minutes later)…Democracy is something that we consciously have to work at.
Ok. Now, on the board are the different eras in History that we have encountered. I have 10 markers for you to build a collective study guide that we will take pictures of and share with each other to get prepared. Remember to literally draw connections between ideas in with the green marker!
Mr. Milton, it’s the last day. Can’t we just have a party?
This is kind of like a preparation party! But feel free to eat a cookie while you do this. They’re Funfetti®.
(the STUDENTS are disengaged with the activity while MR. MILTON attempts to usher them to the board and link similar and competing ideas. MR. MILTON’s enthusiasm seems to be waning although he attempts to hide this from the students. The bell rings and the students walk out the door)
Good luck on your exams! Remember, even “game day players” need practice!
(MR. MILTON sits at his desk with the contract in front of him. As he sits, he begins to reflect on all of the failures that he has had during his first year ~
- Lessons that did not go as planned
- Activities with directions that were not as clear
- Lectures seemingly taken from Ben Stein’s Ferris Bueller character
After this reflection, MR. MILTON checks off a box and puts the contract into an envelope)
Scene 3: Principal’s Office Exterior
Thanks, Mr. Milton. Are you sure?
(seriously) Yes. Thank you for everything this year. It has meant a lot.
Scene 4: Parking Lot
(MR. MILTON is seen slowly walking to his Toyota Prius**. JACK, one of his students, walks after him)
Mr. Milt! I wanted to thank you for being a good teacher. I learned a lot in your class…not just about World History, but also about the world.
Thanks, Jack. Remember, you did most of the work on your own. I just helped!
Right! I hope my brother gets you next year.
Thank you, Jack! Have a good summer.
(As Jack leaves, MR. MILTON reflects on the successes that he has had in his first year ~
- Lessons that had students talking about after class
- Activities that students were absorbed in throughout
- Lectures with frequent student participation
After this reflection, we see a smile begin to form on MR. MILTON’s face)
Scene 5: Principal’s Office
(A quick scene where we see that MR. MILTON checked off the WILL BE RETURNING box with a smiley face [ 🙂 ] )
Scene 6: Inside the Prius slowly leaving the school
Cue Music (Silver Tiles by Matt and Kim)
And in the end, I chose to stay not because of the successes that I had but because of the failures. Overall, things did not go as I had planned or as I day dreamed about. Never did students stand on their desks to seize the day nor did they clap after a successful lesson. But that’s ok. I am going to take this summer and really think about what went well and what could be improved for next year. While the year may be over, I am not. I’m a work in progress. And I’m okay with that.
Who knows what next year will bring in. But I’ll be ready. And believe me, it will be glorious!**** This analogy is currently in development. ** With the DVR, even fake TV shows have to add product placement. *** This was established as a catchphrase earlier this season. Related Posts ~ My Idea: Making Teacher Prep More Like Scrubs We’re Not in Kansas Anymore: A Take from a Modern Classroom My Why I Teach Essay: The Importance of Teaching and the ZOmbie Apocalypse
This is so much fun to read. How many years have you been teaching? Glad you are forging ahead. 🙂
This was my first full year! Prior to that I was here as a long-term substitute for a year and a half in the Social Studies and English Departments.
Your film is very familiar with the exception of the “failure montage”. I did not wait until the end of the year….I had one daily after period 8/9 (soundtrack? Vivaldi’s “Winter” section from The Four Seasons).
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