Sunday, May 3, 2009

Angie's Poem....Quiet Please Children Testing

I found Angie...or rather Angie found me. The poem I was looking for was posted on her blog called The Space Between Words. Angie's poem is titled, quiet please children testing. I think it's worthy of careful consideration. Do you know any children like the one in the poem below?

quiet please children testing
today is a testing day
you can hear a pencil drop if
you listen...put your ear up to that
closed door...the one without the sign
you'll hear the sound of
one child left behind
his routine is interrupted
they are using his space today
his needs aren't important
he wouldn't understand the questions
would he...he doesn't speak english does he
it's not his goals...what does it matter
keep him quiet...let him color...give him
extra recess if he's good
don't let him distract them
can you hear it
soft like tiny feet
it's the sound of one child
left behind
Thank you , Angie, for letting me post your poem.
Teachers, parents, and writers: I would love to hear what you think about Angie's powerful words. All opinions are welcome know that.


angie said...

Hello, Jan!
Thanks for posting my poem!

I just hope that in some small way these words can just help people remember that there are a lot of children out there who are not getting what they need and deserve in our schools.

At the same time these wonderful kids are being included in the classrooms, funding is being drastically cut for the staff needed to assist them. Few regular classroom teachers have the time or ability to fully understand and work with special needs children, so they really do end up sitting and coloring in the back of the room when their support is taken away by budget cuts. It is a hidden and growing problem in our schools these days...and one that breaks my heart to have to witness.

So thank you, Jan, for helping shine a little light into the dark corners...

Sweet Blessings said...

This is very true! It could be a poem written after my nephew who's in first grade. Thank you for sharing! Amanda:)

Glue Girl said...

Oh Jan, this poem is so true. But it's not just the ESL student that is left behind; it's everyone whose brain does not fit into the tiny slice of what we consider "normal." Our educational system looks at just a tiny portion of an individual. We leave out so much of a person when we try to slot our kids into what legislators and administrators consider education. I tell kids that all graduating from high school is, is an exercise in jumping through the hoops. It's conformity, really. I work really hard to teach kids what they need to know to succeed on "the test." But I work twice as hard to instill in them the idea that an education is a thirst and a quest. You don't have to be the brightest star in the sky to be successful, but you do need to have the right attitude and the willingness and know how to go out and find what you need. And the knowledge that anything you want is in your grasp if you make committments to working hard and to never giving up. Whatever that thing is, if you want it badly enough, you will get it. Yes, I teach to the test (which it says right in the testing guidelines and rules that teachers ARE NOT SUPPOSED TO DO!) But when our state report card is tied directly to testing scores, graduation rates, and attendance, AND teacher merit (read: which teachers' students did well on the test?), what are we supposed to do. And if there is a teacher anywhere in the state of Ohio who says they are not teaching to the test, I guarantee you, they are unemployed! Administrators want results, the community is brainwashed into thinking this test tells how well their teachers are performing, and with all this flows the money. And, did you know, testing is BIG BUSINESS? Oh yes, everything we get here in Ohio is trickle down from some of the largest school districts in the US. Where are those districts? Texas for one, CA for another. HMMMNN, who lives in TX? Two guesses. NCLB ring a bell? Anyway, this is turning into a rant, so I will leave off. Testing? LOTS of NCLB -minus- the N

Suzanne said...

What a great poem, Angie. I'm glad you found it, Jan.

Red said...

Angie did great with that poem. It is so true and this time of the year with the stress of the CRCT exams, I don't think the school's realize how many kids are in danger of being left behind until CRCT time. I think there should be ramifications for the teachers and not the kids.

Mandy blew the CRCT's out of the water last year and most likely did this year but she had an ass for a teacher and might have failed the math part just to Spite the evil awful woman. Hard to say.

Sandy said...

We must show this to Chrissy. My daughter, Jan's niece teaches 5th grade in inner city Baltimore, in at a risk area through a special program in The Diocese. She uses her own meager stipend to pay for photocopies, is often at Kinko's at 6 o'clock in the morning picking up copies of study materials, tests, etc. that she needs to teach these kids. I have supplied books for the classroom through buying good quality literature at Half Price Books for her for the past 2 years...there were only a handful of books in the classroom before. I send pencils, papers, markers, chalk etc.; and she buys supplies again on her own dime. All kids need and deserve a quality education. And if a teacher isn't like my darling daughter and does this on her own time with her own money....and sadly, that happens alot.

pssssssss, hope over to my latest travel blog and see how I tied this in.

ERN said...

Very cool poem lots of emotion. Saw a link to this on Traveling Suitcase and thought I'd come see for myself.

I don't have a blog, just like to read them

angie said...

Thanks everyone for your comments--I'm glad this poem got a little conversation going!

Thanks again, Jan, for helping spread the awareness!


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