Saturday, June 24, 2017

“The Fart-Free Classroom” (Jerry Heverly) | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice

“The Fart-Free Classroom” (Jerry Heverly) | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice:

“The Fart-Free Classroom” (Jerry Heverly)



After the previous post on the teachers being practical politicians, Jerry Heverly commented on it and sent along a post he had written illustrating the inexorable dependence of teachers upon their students and the inherent dilemmas teachers face in exerting power, fostering relationships with students and managing their behavior. In effect, teachers have to engage in  practical politics by working out with students compromises to the dilemmas they face in order to get students to learn.
Heverly granted me permission to use this post. He is a veteran San Leandro High School English teacher and written extensively about his experiences teaching over the years. This post appeared March 28, 2012.

“Mr. Heverly, you can’t tell somebody not to fart!”
I was trying to get my students to read, something I struggle with every day.
“It’s like a natural thing. You can’t stop it. People can die from that.”
This was “Sustained Silent Reading”, basically a time for my students to pick a book or magazine and read.
I try very hard to get my students to like reading. My room is lined on two sides with books I’ve accumulated.  My bookcases are a kaleidoscope of colors. I have novels by Jack London, picture books of African-American history, a history of football, teen romances; anything I can find that might appeal to a 15 year old.
I was trying to keep the room quiet. It wasn’t working.
It’s a tight rope I walk every day. If I want a quiet, organized room I must devise “The Fart-Free Classroom” (Jerry Heverly) | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice:

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