Saturday, March 5, 2011

Educating Esme


Just finished reading this book. It's a diary of a teacher's first year. "Madame Esme" spent her first teaching year at the age of 24 in a 5th grade inner-city Chicago classroom. It was very much worth the read - thanks, Leo, for lending it to me.

This journal was, in equal parts, exhilarating, exhausting, and encouraging. You would be hard-pressed to find a more energetic or creative teacher than Esme Raji Codell. The book is easily read in the down moments of a busy day and, as someone who has been doing "teaching" of sorts for the past three years, its appeal is kind of a no-brainer. Esme admits now to having been more than a bit too crass, over-confident, and stuck-up in her first year approach, but hell - she clearly swung for the fences.

Reading this book made me miss my old library job, and it made me wish that I had started teaching professionally 10 years ago. Everything happens for a reason.

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