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happy new year. [03 Jan 2009|01:57pm]
I've decided I'm going to make more of this year. I want to go places, both literally and figuratively, and instead of putting them on wish lists to never get done, I'm going to actually do them. So here goes:

1. Monticello, VA.
2. Mount Vernon, VA.
3. Gettysburg, PA (in the Fall).
4. Independence Hall, PA.
5. The Hay-Adams Hotel, DC (I just want to see it).
6.An Orioles Home Game, MD.
7. Niagara Falls & The Maid of the Mist, NY/Canada (I was on it when I was little, but I want to go again).
8. Madame Tussauds, DC
9. Ford's Theatre, DC
10. Skiing?

Chiefly, I want to go to Monticello. It's far though, about three and a half hours. It'd be fun to stay down there and make a weekend of it though.

scary [10 Aug 2008|10:29pm]

Watch the above video.

$700 billion a year? That's ridiculous. How do we manage to use 25% of the world's daily oil consumption when we only have 4% of the world's population? Get off your lazy ass and walk. Do something.

locked. [09 Aug 2008|01:07am]

comment to be added.

they've lost another one. [08 Aug 2008|12:48am]
I've decided that I don't want to be a teacher anymore. Well, actually, it's more like I can't be one. Don't get me wrong: I love teaching, but I can't be a teacher. Why? Well ...

You see, when from the time I was in kindergarten to about sixth grade, kids went to school to learn. What an interesting concept, huh? The fact that cognitive development and the acquisition of new knowledge are the primary functions of the development of early childhood schooling are more than lost on the United States public educational system. Now, America's future leaders attend school in order to be taught a quick synopsis of the subject at hand in order to enable them to pass a plethora of "standardized" tests as well as memorize mundane and out-datedly useless facts and equations that will never serve a purpose in their lives. Schools no longer prepare students for the highly self-motivated and rapid-paced curriculum that is American higher education -- if there ever was a time in which they really did. Teachers are no longer only responsible for just teaching children the "three R's." Modern-day teachers are also faced with the inundating task of instilling within their students the manners, socialization skills, and values that they will most likely never be taught at home (thanks to lack-luster parents who believe that because their children go to school that they are stripped of the role of teacher themselves, when in fact they are the most important teacher within their child's life), as well as play the role of social worker, baby-sitter, and role model both in and out of the classroom setting (as you never know when you'll run into a parent, former student, fellow teacher, ect).

I believe that a teacher should teach a child in a way that enables him or her to think for his/herself as well as give the child the literal and figurative tools to guide his or her own education. A teacher should instill within each child a love of learning for learning's sake -- no bribery, threat of standardized tests/failure, or force. Modern-day education in the United States doesn't do any of this. I'd love to teach in a private school such as Montessori or The Waldorf School, but I feel like spending all that time/effort/money on a teaching degree just to be able to teach in a handful of private, earthy schools is selling myself short -- shooting myself in the foot, if you will.

Teachers make next to nothing. Almost every teacher I had in high school had a second job. My elementary school art teacher is a full-time teacher and works at Wal-Mart just to be able to make ends meet. How pathetic is that? American teachers are over-worked and severly underpaid. Graduating from college with a Masters in teaching, I will make less annually than a most-likely-high-school-drop-out garbage collector. How utterly pathetic is that? That fact alone sums up what's wrong with this country. I don't want to be rich, I'd just like to be able to get by on ONE JOB!

Albeit highly misplaced prestige, the ever egotistical United States prides itself on being the "best" nation in the world. But one must ask, Just what is it that we're "best" at? Starting wars? Infringing on basic rights? Being unbelievably politically correct? Or maybe it's being a huge doormat for every illegal immigrant? When you look at it that way, yeah, we are the best. Go America! Well, that's another rant for another day ... but to get back on the topic of the sorry state of American education and why I refuse to be a teacher:

I originally decided to be a teacher because I had the misguided perception that I could make a difference in children's lives as well as help them be well-rounded and successful self-guided learners. Little did I know that I would be doing very little of that on my path to cramming every second of the school day with MSA (Maryland State Assessments - MD standardized tests) practice tests and reading strategies and how to properly make an "educated guess" on tests when you don't really know the answer plus endless DIBLES (test given to kindergartners and 1st graders to assess their knowledge of letters and sounds as well as their ability to blend together the sounds to form nonsensical words) bullshit.

Silly me thought there'd be time to make a difference, to change a kid's life.

Thanks United States educational system, you've chased away another prospective teacher candidate. This girl isn't going to reduce herself to being an underpaid, overworked, and most of all -- under appreciated.

It's adios teaching program and hello medical school.
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