Educators… MOUNT UP!!!

As the reality of homeschooling, home offices and quarantines sets in it’s easy to forget what we’ve left behind. On Friday, I walked the silent halls of my Elementary School. I was alone, everyone had left for the day… maybe for the year.

There were no colorful backpacks hanging on their hooks, or any voices of students working together on a rigorous task. Students’ chairs were turned upside down on their desks and the SMART boards were dark.

However, school was in session. Teachers were hard at work. They’re preparing for a completely new way of teaching the children they love so much. They’ve had no time to prepare for this. These educators,the ones I work with everyday, took what public education has been for centuries and flipped it upside down and inside out. The school district I work in has taken on the task with determination.

Washington, DC didn’t tell us what to do. The state didn’t tell us what to do. It was the public educators. The ones in the trenches. We are going to “war” with traditional teaching and also with the “virus” that has become a world wide pandemic. And… there is no one… not one staff that I would rather go to war with than my staff at Huntington.

There’s little we can do, us educators on the front lines. The teachers, principals and central office staff members want nothing more than to be on the front lines. We want to visit our families and help serve grab and go meals. But, we know there are people on the front lines already… the nurses, doctors and medical professionals who need us to stay back and help from afar.

So that’s what we do. We do what we can from afar. I’ve been lucky enough to have the platform to do that. From this blog I’ve been able to reach out to so many of my school families. I decided last week to do a live read aloud each night to help keep some sort of connection to my students.

The funny thing is I was hoping to reach a few students, maybe even a few from my last school… but then something happened. Hundreds, thousands of people tuned in. Channel 8 News asked for an interview and Chronicles of a New Dad and Jax were lighting up the 6:00 news.

It become a family affair, a way for a community to gather (or at least I see it that way). I feel that it helps me do “my part.” While I joke about another 15 minutes of fame, the message is clear… educators are doing their part to keep their students engaged and in the end, as a society, that’s all we can ask.

Coronavirus scare: Teachers, administrators, and students turn to social media for traditions like storytime

Advice for Jax Taken from ’90s Hip Hop

When you need help or advice as a new parent the obvious thing to do is call someone who knows what do, right?  You would obviously reach out to someone with experience and expertise.  You also want to gain the knowledge and experience so that you are better prepared to deal next time the situation may arise.

There are millions of books, blogs (definitely not this one) and child experts who can provide new parents with support as they navigate the ups and downs of raising a child.  However, why just go for the obvious?  That’s why when I attempt to drop little nuggets of knowledge on Jackson I turn to the place that helped impart the same essential knowledge on me… 90’s Hip Hop.

For example: Here are the top pieces of wisdom that came out of 90’s hip hop:

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ADVICE:  “Never trust a big butt and a smile.” – Bel Biv Devoe

TRANSLATION:  Judge a book by its cover… especially, if that book has a big booty and a friendly grin. If it does, definitely DO NOT trust them.  People who have large rear ends are usually liars and should not be trusted to tell the truth.

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ADVICE:  “Yea I got on sneaks, but I need a new pair… Cause basketball courts in the summer got girls there.” – The Fresh Prince

TRANSLATION:  You can never make a second first impression.  Yes, you may have a quality education and work hard to provide for your family, but if you don’t look fresh to death for the ladies on the courts… you lose at life.  Remember, the newer the sneaks the better.

 

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ADVICE:  “Blame it on the rain (rain), Blame it on the stars (stars), Whatever you do don’t put the blame on you, Blame it on the rain yeah yeah, You can blame it on the rain.” –Milli Vanilli

TRANSLATION:  The buck does not stop here… keep passing the buck… whatever you do, do not admit you are part of the buck.  If you want to be successful in life, at work and especially in a relationship… DO NOT EVER ADMIT YOU SCREWED UP!  Just blame it on someone else.

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ADVICE:  “The rhythm is the bass and the bass is the treble.” –Warren G

TRANSLATION:  I have no freaking idea… just seems like something you should know in life.

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ADVICE:  “Flow like a harpoon daily and nightly.” –Vanilla Ice

TRANSLATION:  Whenever you are faced with a tough situation… go at it head on and attack it until you succeed just like a harpoon when it… when it, well you know, when it flows.  Everyone knows that nothing works harder at its job than a harpoon… because that harpoon flows every day and every night.

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ADVICE: “Too legit to quit” –MC Hammer

TRANSLATION:  Be a young man who grows up and does things the right way.  That’s legit… be so legit that you can never go back to not being legit. Don’t be not legit or unlegit.  And for that reason you must never quit.

 

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BONUS ADVICE:  “Can’t blow too hard; Life’s a deck of cards.” –Jay Z

TRANSLATION:  Forget the fact that Jigga got the analogy completely wrong (the line should have been “life’s a HOUSE of cards”), these are words to live by because everyone knows that people who are the most successful don’t brag about their success.  If there was ever a model of living a low key life, it is definitely Jay-Z.

 

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