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Burned-Out Teachers


Remember those burned-out teachers you had in middle or high school? They'd been teaching for decades and the passion for the profession was all but gone. They rolled into class, looking like they wanted to be anywhere but there. Maybe they were mostly to blame for the state of their minds. Or maybe the system pushed them in that direction. Whatever the reason, you can only imagine what effect such low morale had on their students.

In a recent chat on edweek.org about student motivation, several readers posed that question: Does low teacher morale have an impact on student motivation? "Absolutely," answered Carol Dweck, a professor of psychology at Stanford University and one of the Aug. 30 chat guests. "Students need to feel that learning is exciting and that their teacher is completely devoted to helping them develop their intellectual skills. ... How can this take place in a classroom with low teacher morale?"

Researchers, policymakers, superintendents, and principals—especially those in districts struggling to improve student achievement—need to keep this in mind as they hatch their master plans for how to improve their schools.


can you send me any thing about teacher motivation and an artical about it to
think you

Why do teachers quit teaching? I taught for 23 years. The following are actual statements made to me as a teacher by parents or community representives. At least the non obscene ones . . .

(Teacher lunch by local civic group, from podium)“We are going to provide teachers lunch today. We know you work so terribly hard and you are all so poor we need to help you somehow. I wish the district would pay you more but I know, personally, I’d have to move if they dropped my Homestead Exemption.”

“Well, y’know what they say – if you can’t do, teach. So what is it you do?”

“What is your hang up on telling kids where to sit? What does it even matter where they sit? I think you teachers are just all control freaks.”

“My kid doesn’t do his homework? What do you want me to do about it? I can’t even get him to come home before 11 on a school night.”

“You teach? What is your real job, I mean the one you trained for?”

“(My kid) grabbed your pictures (of family) off your desk and threw them across the room? If he didn’t break them or hurt anybody what harm was done?”

“(Female child name) was wearing her tube top at school? Heck, she wears less to the Mall, what’s the problem? She was wearing a jacket when she left here.”

(At a “Meet the Teacher Night”) “College plans? Heck, I figure (son’s name) will quit when he turns sixteen, get his GED and go to work at (chemical plant). It didn’t hurt me none and I got a pickup truck newer that your car I bet.”

“A new junior high? For the kids to tear up? I think it’d be better to invest the tax money in a new stadium for the high school. Besides, that really makes money.”

“You left the chalkboard eraser on the chalk tray. So, in a way, you facilitated him (smacking another student over the head with the wooden back of the eraser) so it’s more your fault than his.”

“He’s failing Drama? Well, heck, it’s just an elective, it don’t count for nothin’.”

“You people (teachers) should have to follow the same rules as the kids. If they aren’t allowed to do something you shouldn’t be allowed to do it either.”

“You got (child’s name) in trouble cause you wouldn’t give him a pass to the restroom and he walked out. You can go to the bathroom anytime you want so the kids should have the same.”

“Well, you know kids, they don’t have no common sense so you can’t expect much from ‘em.”

“I’ve been pickin’ on (boy name) since last summer, tryin’ to toughen him up for junior high. Y’know, knock him around a little, tell ‘em off a lot, curse at him…”

You mean it’s 4 PM on a Friday and the teachers are leaving to go home? What the heck do we pay taxes for, they need to stay until 5 .

I tell my kid if someone punches him at school he needs to make damn sure that kid ain’t standin’ in fifteen seconds.

My kid has to come to school in an air-conditioned bus because he sweats to terribly.

So, my (girl name) has to go to the bathroom every hour. She’s a girl with girl problems, you don’t know about that.

(At school lunchroom) The kids are throwing away most of the food? Either you better stop ‘em or tell the cafeteria people to get real and serve food they will eat – like Nutty Bars and Cokes. What kid drinks fruit juice anyway unless you make ‘em?

I just wanna let you know I’m gonna follow that school bus home today and (child name) is gonna tell me who is pickin’ on him so I can go whoop the tar out of them when they get off - since you people won’t do it!

(Before an optional Saturday contest trip) (Child name) qualifies for free-reduced lunch at (school) so who’s gonna pay for his lunch on Saturday?

(Student was to be picked up by 4 PM) Sorry I was so late but I didn’t realize (child name) wasn’t home until 8.

Heck, boys will be boys, y’know. Besides, you have a spare tire, don’t ya? You have to expect that being a teacher.

He took the tape off your desk without asking? Why did you have your tape there in the first place?

He threw an egg at you? I wondered where the eggs got to. Thanks!

You got 40 kids in your second period class? Why did you let that many kids in?

I was wondering could you get (child name) sent to In-School Suspension every day? He gets his work done there.

He broke the lock off of you storage locker? Why did you have it locked, are you hiding something in there?

(To a male teacher) Her father, or her sperm donor that made her, isn’t worth a damn. Typical male, irresponsible.

Could you teachers walk him to his next period class everyday (across campus) so he won’t get in a fight?

I tell him to work in his state tested classes and don’t worry about the rest of ‘em.

I know (child) has rights as a citizen and if he has a cd player in his backpack you can’t take it even if it’s on. Ask him to shut it off.

I want it in his (learning adjustment plan) that the state tests (including reading) be read to him (junior high student).

He was peeing on the back wall of the school because he doesn’t like stinky bathrooms. Why can’t you people keep them clean?

Please let him leave class five minutes early everyday so he can wash his hands before he goes to lunch.

Can I have all your lessons for the year in advance so I can keep up with them?

He needs extra help, more than just afterschool help. Please send your teacher’s edition bhome with him every night so I can review it with him. He’ll bring it back every day…

So he tore the pages out of his textbook? Is it yours?

I need to see all the grades for all of the students in your classes. I just don’t think he’s been done right.

I gotta ask a favor – can you introduce me to that fine lookin’ (subject) teacher of his? (12 year old male child) says she’s hot.

(Parent-teacher conference) I know you really didn’t need to see me about (child) but I’d like to introduce you to the wonderful world of (MLM company name)…

So, what’s your night job? Every teacher has a night job.

I’m sorry that his homework is hard to read. I tend bar at night and the gouges in the bar top is hard to write on for him.

hi thanks for your comments folks it really helps me a lot 4 my research. i'm still teaching for 3 years

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Recent Comments

  • jay-r: hi thanks for your comments folks it really helps me read more
  • Mike: Why do teachers quit teaching? I taught for 23 years. read more
  • jeje: can you send me any thing about teacher motivation read more




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