Month: May 2021

Being A JEDII Teacher: Reflections on a battle-scarred school year

Bitmoji avatar of Black anime style character in the foreground with a brown hooded jacket, right arm/open hand stretched forward; left hand holding a lowered light saber. Two shadowy characters similarly dressed with light sabers raised on the right and left of the main character. Banner below the art reads: USE THE FORCE.

During the summer of 2020, exhausted by the fights to keep everything together

A year of supporting my only living parent as she battled cancer, living thousands of miles away with my sister and her family as she battled her own painful truths about…life…

As an educator watching all the things I imagined could be true about technology (and a technological future in the classroom) come to fruition in a dramatically shocking style and at a frenetic pace, I felt prepared for the battle. Equipped to lead, the weight of rapid change hit me in the knees…crippling me, causing my entire structure to buckle under the weight. Bracing myself, steadying myself, more slowly, less time online, more time sitting…again…with myself and a book…

There’s more but…later

What is…who is… A JEDII teacher? What does it mean and why are acronyms so important to me? How do we translate this for the people and why does that matter? Oh yeah…it matters…there’s more…but…later.

At thirty-six weeks into the school year that started seventeen weeks after global pandemic shut down our schools and teachers never stopped…contrary to the belief that many of us have vacation in the summer, most of us never stop planning or working or serving…there’s more…but…later.

Here we are, the end of May and I finally see the students that are invisible…the ones that are veiled behind muted mics and black screens…

This one is probably suffering from dyscalculia,

That one dysgraphia,

That one dyslexia,

All…dis-connected while being connected…online…

Many depressed…while being at home…online…

Most overwhelmed…while being at school during a pandemic…

My question: “are we saying this year counts?”

My answer: “Yes”.

Their answer: SILENCE.

There’s more…later.

My jedi ways of July, shifting…expanding…not cute…imperative.

So what is…who is…A JEDII teacher?

One functioning to secure access, justice, equity, diverse perspectives, and identities of inclusion at every turn of the school experience…leveraging technology, ecology, sociology, psychology and every other -ology that exists to provide evidence of…everything.

Why do we hurt others?

How do we overcome excessive lack of trust?

When is it ok to say…nah…I ain’t doin’ that?

Where do we go to incubate ideas without feeling like you’re being watched or exploited?

Who is part of my circle for real?

What does a person do when their light (their weapon) is low?

I’ve got three more weeks…

For now…take refuge on a rainy day…it is rest for the weary.