When I was a teacher, I discovered how easy it was was to fall into what I (used to call Curriculum Overload but now) call “Curriculum Purgatory,” where you gaze, out into the wild wilderness of your classroom, surrounded on all sides by oversized Teacher’s Manuals, telling you what 17 different things you could be doing for the week, each of them somehow loosely connected to the simple lesson you wanted to focus on. Teachers just starting out can drown in this, feeling like they’re somehow not servicing their students the right way unless they try to do everything the book says.
This is not true, for many reasons, but most of all any of the lessons you pick will undoubtedly be fine. Sure, doing a smaller activity may not have as much impact as one of the activities that takes students days to finish, but if you’re a beginner, it’s fine. For me, I liked to pick two things from these curriculum books then really delve into whatever activity or lesson they tried to teach. Those restrictions, I found, were the key for me becoming a more advanced, well-knowledgeable teacher. Since then, I’ve found that working within confines, within self-imposed rules, gives me spirit to push on. To try. To know what my limitations were and how, when the time is right, to break past them.
Last week, I made some heavy promises about what this site, and my life, were going to be. While I could say for the most part, mentally, it was a success, there wasn’t a lot to show for it here. I’ll talk about those details on Wednesday, but today I’m going to quickly mention the restrictions for these blog posts going forward: 3 paragraphs. That’s it. Say what I want to say in 3 paragraphs, roughly 500 words or less, and then get out. I’m not trying to reinvent the wheel over here in my dark little corner of the internet. I’m just spouting out the thoughts and worries of a dude who’s trying to write books for a living. If you want more nuanced, carefully crafted blogs, detailing the indiscriminate procrastination involved in shipping PS5s to everyone in the world, go somewhere else. I got worries to write about.
See you Wednesday for a little more. And yes, I know this technically counts as a 4th paragraph, but, whatever. It’s 2020.
Thanks for reading,
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