My Dream Class

Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey queue, ...

While we’re dreaming, let’s have class here. (Wizarding World of Harry Potter classroom. Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Maybe it’s because I’m currently spending my weekdays with 3rd graders, but I’ve decided that I want to form a class out of my teen bloggers and spend every day teaching them.

Wow.  I just said “my” like I had something to do with their work, which I definitely don’t.  Sorry, teens.

Actually, almost all teachers tend to develop that habit.  Maybe you’ve noticed it in my blog already.  “My students”, “my teens”, “my kids”.  But when we teachers say “my,” we aren’t trying to take credit that isn’t ours.  Rather, we’re expressing a dedication to our students that’s sometimes hard to explain.  They aren’t just the students that I happen to teach.  They’re my investment, my life’s work in human form.  I belong to them even more than they belong to me.  

Since I’m not working with my own teens in the classroom right now, I’ve become more interested in the teens of the blogging community.  Seriously – if I could form a student body out of the teens here, I think I would be teaching my dream class.

Picture it, teen readers.  Can you imagine the discussions we’d have?  The inside jokes we’d form?  The passionate-but-respectful debates on character motivations and social ethics?  The creative juices that would flow in that room, the ideas that would develop, and the projects we could create?

Romeo and Juliet (1968 film)

Teen angst at its finest. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’d look up that recipe for butterbeer I saw once on YouTube and make it for us to drink while we discussed the character development in Harry Potter.  We’d make fun of how teen-angsty Romeo and Juliet is and then get all creepy-psychological with Macbeth.  We’d do free-writes based on that prompt book I found at Barnes & Noble, with results that would be sometimes deep, sometimes hilarious, and sometimes inspire discussions so intense that I’d throw out my lesson plan for the day just so we could keep talking.  We’d each bring our passions and interests to the table and research them together, learning more about ourselves and each other in the process.  We’d push each other to be better writers, to not settle for “fine” and instead strive for powerful, moving, and world-changing.

As I read each blog, I picture that class.  I see the class clowns, the quirky drama nerds, the motivated youngsters, the ambitious seniors, the compassionate friends, the socialites, and the down-to-earth workers.  I see their thoughtful intelligence, passionate zeal for life, and ambition through their writing.  I know I’m privileged to have that glimpse into their world and I’m so thankful for it.

It would have been easy for me to become complacent about my career during this year of relocating every three months, since I can’t invest myself in any one school or student body.  It would have been easy to just coast on my subbing until I can look for permanent work again.  I started this blog as a place to give voice to my ideas while on the move – and I’ve done that.  But blogging has done so much more for me, too.  Through blogging I’ve encountered all these incredible teenagers who have fueled my passion for my work even more.

I thought I’d end this post with the roster of my dream class – all the incredible teen blogs I follow.  This is by no means a comprehensive or exclusive list.  Please let me know if I missed any of you, or if there are more that I need to add to the list.  Maybe I just haven’t discovered your blog yet!

The anonymous teenage girl; anotherteenagegirlblog; Awkward, American, and AngstyBawkTalkBlackBirdSpeaksCackles.From.A.Mad.Duck; Ciara-Marie!Dear Teen of Grace; Defeating Dragonsdefineemily; Elixir of MemoriesGeneration Challenge; Have You Seen My Glass Slipper?henadoesstuffInsatiable Before Death; The Little Things; Little Sweet and SourLove, Hate, Life; My Momentary VowMy Never Never Land; Never StationaryThe problem with societySuper Opinion8ted; SydneyJoToThe Quiet Voice; Teenage Dream…Teenage Enthusiasm; Tell me, when will my life begin?The Turn of the Earth; Wondering, Fearing, Doubting

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22 thoughts on “My Dream Class

  1. Hello Mrs. Roberson!
    I love reading your posts; they’re very inspiring and often provide me with a (sometimes much needed) smile. I was really surprised and happy to find that to included me in your list of students for your dream class! Thank you for that, and I’m glad that you like my writing. 🙂
    Thanks again,
    -BB

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  2. Does this mean I’m a dream student?
    **feels flattered, maybe**
    Macbethis amazing. It’s one of those things that really got me into psychological literature. I mean, my heart and soul will forever lie with Dostoevsky’s Crime and Punishment because it’s the first psychological novel I loved, but reading Macbeth in class was awe-inspiring.
    My friend, however, tells me that Hamlet is better (and I’ve also been told that The Brothers Karamazov is better than Crime and Punishment). So many books… not enough time. I wish the ninth grade curriculum had more interesting reading material. My thoughts on Great Expectations, in one sentence: How does anyone take a book that describes knocking as “an unsuccessful application of his knuckles to my door” seriously?

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    • A literature nerd after my own heart! I personally like Hamlet better, but Macbeth is the one that works its way into most high school curriculum. I enjoy it, too, so I don’t mind. I actually haven’t done as much with the Russian lit. I’ve read Crime and Punishment, but never tried to teach it. I was always more of a British/Irish literature nerd, even in my teen years. Though I never got into Dickens that much, actually.

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      • I loved Great Expectations when I read it in English AP, but I was the only one in my class who did. Dickens is great if you enjoy his cute little turns of phrase and aren’t in any hurry for the plot to progress haha.
        When we did Macbeth, we kept a running death toll on the whiteboard; it was a lot of fun.
        I think I would love the blogger dream class! I also think that you would be an awesome teacher to have 🙂

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  3. Pingback: 6 Reasons Teen Blogs are Awesome | Avoiding Neverland

  4. Pingback: Welcome to the class | Have You Seen My Glass Slipper?

    • Absolutely not! I read your arguments for hating Darcy, and I’d actually say they’re pretty well founded. I don’t require my class to always agree, as long as they have solid reasoning behind their opinions. 🙂 Plus, anyone interested in Jane Austen enough to form strong opinions about the characters is totally OK in my book.

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  5. I’m a teen blogger, and I’m fairly new to the wordpress community. I loved this post, and I’ve started checking out the blogs you mentioned above.

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