Sunday, December 21, 2014

As teachers we believe that something must be done...

Sharing our experiences, our successes, our failures, is a great way to help other teachers and to contribute with educational reform." Robert John Meehan

"Some students can be extremely frustrating, distant and downright irritating, but they are children, and should be treated as such." Robert John Meehan

"The teacher’s demonstrated attitude of respect and empathy can be a significant factor in successfully working with challenging students." Robert John Meehan

"Make sure that our methodology is not simply packaging old wine in new bottles. Teaching today requires a whole new vineyard." Robert John Meehan

"Children need to be challenged and pushed, not to the point where they give up but to the point where they think, "Wow, look at me go!" Robert John Meehan

"As teachers we believe that something must be done. We can’t just sit down and wait for other people to do something." Robert John Meehan

"Teachers are unique problem solvers by character, temperament, and resilience. Teachers can not be manufactured." Robert John Meehan

"If a strong parent is lacking to demand excellence and instill them with a desire to get better in everything they do, then teachers must fill that role." Robert John Meehan

"Teaching requires risk, an acceptance of uniqueness, a rejection of any form of discrimination and it requires a critical thought of its current practices." Robert John Meehan

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Thursday, December 11, 2014


By Robert John Meehan

 My pencil is on the floor
Just what am I to do
I'll not get it with my feet
As the other children do

The test has already started
I'm in danger of falling behind
If only a fellow student
Would return it in ample time

My palms are now sweating
My frustration's beginning to show
No talking is permitted
Thus my pencil lies below

If my eyes were to wander
For a helping hand to find
Would my teacher be believing
Or would questions of cheating be defined

As I squirm anxiously in my seat
There's sweat forming on my brow
I wantingly glance beneath me
Believing I'll  retrieve it yet somehow

A commotion I could make
But others I would distract
Or an illness I could fake
With a slim chance the test retake

I glance up at the clock
With feelings of dismal shock
Wishing in my predicament
My teacher soon takes stock

I hesitatingly raise my hand
As a tear trickles down my cheek
Hoping and praying all along
That my teacher's eyes and mine do meet

But much to my dismay
She's still  looking another way
With hopes of finishing diminishing
I'll need find yet another way

I swallow a gulp of air
In hopes of clearing my throat
In need of my teacher's attention
To questions with answers yet unwrote

In fear of promoting a commotion
I begrudgingly bury my head
Any hopes of a successful solution
Are lost in my feelings of dread

With a tap on my shoulder from behind me
And a tug on my chair's brake release
My teacher's whispering voice reminds me
My wheelchair's brake to release 

With a smile and a nod to assure me
To put my worst expectations to rest
My teacher returns me my pencil
And on I continue my test  


Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Need some more teaching inspiration? Part 2

Some of the wit and wisdom of Robert John Meehan found in 

 "Be diligent in believing that what we do in the classroom could possibly echo for a lifetime in the heart of a student." Robert John Meehan

 ... things to happen, not in the future but right now!" Robert John Meehan

  1. "Learning becomes relevant when we connect it with reality." - Robert John Meehan

  2. "No one ever needed to remind me that teaching was hard work. Nor do they need to remind me now that it is worth it." Robert John Meehan

    "Poverty just may be the biggest bully in our schools today." Robert John Meehan

    "Never be satisfied with how much you can instill in a student today: it all pales in comparison to the futures they face." Robert John Meehan

    "Nothing that the political education reformist mandate can match the results of a dedicated teacher in a supportive school environment." Robert John Meehan

    "A student's progress should be measured in terms of the questions they are asking, not merely by the answers that they are reciting"- Robert John Meehan

    "We need to realize that for at-risk kids, school may not be their top priority. Listen to what is going on in their lives." Robert John Meehan

    "Exemplary teachers are not gifted; they are just more prepared and more willing to do what it takes. They conscientiously succeed on purpose." Robert John Meehan

    "To transform schools successfully, we need to navigate the difficult space between letting go of old strategies and grabbing on to new ones." Robert John Meehan

    The reason child poverty in the US has expanded over the past two decades has nothing to do with “bad teachers". Robert John Meehan

    "It is the open mindedness and the seeking out of new information and practices that insures teachers continued success in the classroom."- Robert John Meehan

    "The highest respect should go to those teachers who let their actions rise above other teachers' excuses."- Robert John Meehan

    "Measuring human growth and development is not like measuring the reproduction of a single model on an assembly line. It is a complex system of helping to figure out where a student is, and how to help them get where they are going."- Robert John Meehan

    "Exemplary teachers will always care more about the people their students will become than the scores on the tests they take." Robert John Meehan

    "Be a reflective teacher. Honestly look at what you do from time to time. Evaluate the purpose of your role as a teacher." Robert John Meehan

    "We should not lose sight of the fact the most important door a child walks through for their education is the front door of their own home." Robert John Meehan

    "Don't struggle to be a better teacher than everybody else. Simply be a better teacher than you ever thought you could be." - Robert John Meehan

    "Great classrooms are characterized by positive, open relationships, mutual respect, and a shared responsibility for the learning process"- Robert John Meehan

    "For most of us teaching is not just what earns our paycheck. Teaching is what we were put on earth to do." Robert John Meehan

    "Learning will soon become drudgery if the student sees it only as something that happens while sitting at a desk." Robert John Meehan

    "You can't fix education until you fix the community, education is not a building but a lifestyle and an environment."- Robert John Meehan

    "Chasing test scores is not synonymous with building and nurturing a culture of learning." Robert John Meehan

    The best collaboration time is spent talking about learning, not talking about teaching. Robert John Meehan

    "A key to growing as a teacher is to keep company mainly with teachers who uplift you, whose presence inspire You and whose dedication drives YOU." - Robert John Meehan

    "A well prepared and engaging teacher is a catalyst... a spark that creates the desire to learn in our students."- Robert John Meehan

    "Great schools are nurtured with the cooperation of many teachers with a common vision working toward a common goal of extraordinary student achievement."- Robert John Meehan

    "If we taught each day with a renewed appreciation of its consequences, would we ever lose sight of the infinite possibilities within our reach?" Robert John Meehan

    "Great teachers rise to the top not by chance but through passion and purpose."- Robert John Meehan

    "Repeated high stakes testing has only proven that five out of four students have trouble with fractions." Robert John Meehan

    "The reward of witnessing the blossoming of a student's once dormant "will to learn" is well worth the moments of adversity leading up to it."- Robert John Meehan

    "Although we may not have much control over the culture outside our walls, we can set expectations that uphold a higher standard." Robert John Meehan

    "It's tragic that we are mandated to turn so many eager young learners into frustrated test performers." Robert John Meehan

    "Exemplary teachers are more than just teacher trained Professionals, they are also highly trained PROFESSIONAL LEARNERS!" Robert John Meehan

    "As Teachers, we should be the waves that drift around, lift and propel our students out to new places beyond the security of each student's own presumed harbor." Robert John Meehan

    "What keeps teachers going has largely to do with their inner lives. It is their inner spirit that makes and sustains good teachers." Robert John Meehan

    "There are some teachers out there who will tell you that you can't reach all of them. What you've got to do is turn around and say 'watch me now'." Robert John Meehan

    "Teachers are unique problem solvers by character, temperament, and resilience. Teachers can not be manufactured." Robert John Meehan

    "All teachers who have had consistent success in the classroom understand that it is not enough merely to dispense information." Robert John Meehan

    "I'm willing to wager that few of our students' dreams include being proficient on a standardized test."- Robert John Meehan

    "Poverty just may be the biggest bully in our schools today." Robert John Meehan

    "Never be satisfied with how much you can instill in a student today: it all pales in comparison to the futures they face." Robert John Meehan

    "As a teacher you have to be committed to learning for a lifetime first before you can lead your students down that path." Robert John Meehan