Thursday, June 23, 2011

end of the year thoughts...

first things first... it has been a marathon year and i was trying to sprint through the last few weeks. but one cool outcome that i got to see on my 31st birthday of all days was a video done by PBS News Hour about the Nothing Like My Home project that I teach every year. check it out. Nothing Like My Home: Bronx on PBS

it's very important to note that not everyone in the project was properly credited, so I wanted to take this moment to recognize Lori Grinker, who was the photographer/videographer who started the journey of discussing Iraqi refugees in my classroom with her vision. Also, Marieke van Woerkom, who collaborated with the Morningside Center for Teaching Social Responsibility to develop the Nothing Like My Home curriculum that I use. i wouldn't be teaching this unit every year were it not for their sense of urgency that the stories of refugees worldwide need to be told, and that this is a global human rights issue we must undertake.

i'll get back to you on more thoughts about the closing of my 3rd year of teaching once i've had a chance to process it a bit more. we just finished scoring regents today, and have graduation on Tuesday! can't wait to see those seniors strut across the stage, beaming with pride, some of them being the first in their families to achieve that diploma.

and i'd like to close with a love poem:

"the size of this"

i have been cresting
the crust of the earth, peering
into volcanoes trying
to find you, circumnavigating
the city to locate the
coordinates of your breath,
charting new territories in
dangerous waters to wield
your weapons. i lost
my compass but kept
walking toward the sun.

you surprised my eyes
out of their sockets.
ninja-quiet in your
ability to hunt me down,
reel me in like red snapper,
memorize my phone number
and my rising sign
between your palms,
you opened up a new
avenue for breathing.

you are a spring cruise
in a 61 lincoln -
convertible, suicide doors.
i want just 5 more miles,
ten more minutes to praise
your name like worship.
let the wind lift us from
this earthbound tragedy
and move together,
across beautiful borders,
across civil countries,
across boundaries.

-lmf (6-23-11 ... 6:43pm)

1 comment:

Elizabeth said...

land of lolo- congrats on the end of your third year.. from the looks of it, you work very hard at what you do! As a current SMACer, I would just like to say how awesome the bps video of you and your class is! I think I saw some concept maps in there which I am sure made Charlie proud when he saw it! Watching the video is very inspiring and it makes me anxious and nervous to enter such a challenging profession. Keep up the good work and I look forward to reading more!