I have not posted in forever, I blame that on lack of time, fear, and yes more fear of writing in public.
Today I wrapped up my second official year of teaching high school. I had some great highs: Mission trip to the Philippines over Christmas break.
Coaching varsity volleyball, grade 8 basketball and varsity tennis…
and some lows: witnessed by first real incident of bullying,
and, oh yea, sometimes I taught….;)
I had fun teaching students, in Social Studies, an alternative perspective of the Jesuits in early Canada, other than what they read in their, often anti-Catholic, text book. We discussed, the Jesuits and the Catholic Church, being against trading alcohol to the Huron and other First Nations, and how the purpose of the missionaries was not to kill the First Nations by spreading diseases. Luckily, “Canada A People’s History” t.v. series, gave a more balanced representation. It’s good to see perspectives from all sides, and then leave the students to come to their own conclusions.
Read The Giver by Lois Lowry with my English 8 class and had interesting discussions about Euthanasia and St. Thomas More’s Utopia. Students even created their own Utopian worlds, where their laws and punishments were quite harsh, and of course the school week was only 3-4 days in their worlds:)
Got caught up in the Hunger Games mania, read all three books and even came up a tag like game for PE modelled after the trilogy. I used flag football belts as their lives and put extra flags in the middle of the gym to simulate the “cornicopia”. The Object was to collect as many flags as they could. They had safe zones, scattered around the gym, that I would randomly turn off with the blow of a whistle, much like the game keeper. Finally when most people were out, I would let everyone back in for a final minute of pandemonium. It was interesting experiment, to say the least, and the students loved it. Obviously, I had rules that made the game perfectly safe and enjoyable for all…only one jammed finger to report.
Lastly, in religion 9, we discussed chastity at length. I was unsure of how this class would go, since they were way more innocent than my class the year before. They didn’t like discussing anything at first, but by the end of the year I was really impressed with their responses especially on their online discussion forum! My objective was not to just preach abstinence, but rather to show the beauty of chastity and the positives of waiting for marriage. To also help them really believe that each and every one of them is someone special, made in God’s image and someone worth waiting for. Judging by their responses, they seemed to really get it, and I thank God for JPII and Theology of the Body everyday! Here are some responses that I really loved:
“We can find the kind of love God has planned for us by praying and talking to God. God has a plan for us and if we just ignore him, how is he supposed to show us what he has planned for us? If we just go into random relationships without even thinking about it, just because we want a boyfriend we won’t even realize that it’s not that we want a boyfriend, it’s that we want someone who loves us. You will know you are in a bad relationship,if you are growing away from God, why would God have someone planned for you who is going to take you away from him? ”
“Don’t ever go below your boundry. It may take a while for a guy to come along who respects you and your boundries, but it is better to wait then to give in and date someone who will make your boundry go lower. Pray to God to help you get through it and to help you find someone who was the same beliefs as you.”
” If you dress immodestly, your going to gets guys’ attention, but you won’t end up with true love that will last for a lifetime. Being chaste and modest and having confidence in yourself are main factors you must show to finding the guy you will want to be with forever.”
and my favourite:
“If the relationship is helpful not hurful, selfless not selfish, giving not taking, and forgiving not resentful you will have the kind of love that God has planned for you. “