If I've been keeping to myself more than usual or coming home not wanting to do ANYTHING, this is a clue that it's testing season in Texas public schools. It'll all be over next Thursday, and whatever skills my students choose to apply or not apply on their tests will be out of my control. Some people are in favor of pay for performance for teachers. That's fine - just give us a fair playing field. Test every student's IQ, and while you're at it test them for learning disabilities, dyslexia, ADHD, and emotional disturbances. And don't forget to take into account their exposure to reading and correctly spoken English at home. These are many of the students I'm trying to reach every day and consequently wouldn't trade for a privileged group.
Today in one of my classes only ONE student raised his hand to answer the question, "explain what synonym means." I about died. I just hope the rest of the students were so worn out from lack of A/C that their brains were temporarily fried.