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After the Bell

Dave Orphal

June 4, 2015

Am I a good teacher? Part 1 of 3

8 comments

"Mr. Orphal, I've been in your room several times this year," said my new vice principal over at Skyline High several years ago. "Every time, the students look like they are working hard, but I've never seen you teach!"

Obviously, in my mind, he had.

For me, teaching isn't about me being on a stage. It isn't about telling the children what I know, in hopes that they will remember it come test day. I'm not interested in my students filling in the correct bubbles to show the powers-that-be what they remember from my lectufying. 

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Dave Orphal

April 22, 2015

Managing Sick Days

7 comments

I’ve been up all through the night with stomach cramps that feeling like I’m being kicked. I’d tell you more, but, you know, TMI.

When the alarm rang at 5AM, I knew there was now way I could go in. I needed a sub.

For many teachers, preparing for and cleaning up after a substitute is a nightmare. We will just drag our weak, sniffily, infectious bodies into school rather than surrender control of our classroom to a substitute.

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Dave Orphal

March 12, 2015

A little service translates to a lot of smiles.

0 comments

“Can we keep them forever?” one teacher asked me, referring to two of my students. As soon as they walked in the room, the children hushed and listened with rapt attention.  For the room of third graders, the junior and senior were like rock stars. Up and down the hall I roamed, gently knocking on doors, introducing myself, and listening as my students read to the little ones.

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