Archive | November, 2010

“Popular in our time, unpopular in his. So runs the stereotype of rejected genius.” – Robert Hughes

28 Nov

     What is a stereotype?  I find more and more that my life is surrounded, and often defined by them, and it makes me uncomfortable. 

       Recently I wrote a paper on the American Indian artist  Fritz Scholder.  His art collection I focused on was titled “Indian/Not Indian” and this meant a lot of things to me.  Firstly I learned of how he was brought up by a father who was ashamed of being an Indian.  He never defined himself as an Indian artist, others had done that for him, even before he brought real Indian content into his work.  It is a part of who he is, but it is not the only thing, and through his work he explored the idea of stereotypes.  His art reflected on the stereotype of both what Indian art is and what and Indian is.  An issue within Indian Art is that society has stuck it with one stereotype and defined it as one style of art, and unlike every other art style, it isn’t given the freedom to change or develop.  I feel that this is the same with stereotypes of First Nations people in society in general.

I think about stereotypes a lot, especially when I think of the ones I will see in the classroom. My biggest concern is making sure that every student feels integrated in the classroom, and with so many students who are different I wonder if these stereotypes will hinder that.  People automatically make judgements about many things, not just race, and decide how they feel about a certain person before they even know them. 

I believe that learning isn’t peripheral.  By this I mean that in order for students to find information relevant that information needs to be fully integrated into the lesson.  For instance I find that when myself and my peers try to incorporate Aboriginal content into lessons it becomes a side note, and for a student they will just regard it as something on the side and unimportant.  I believe it is the same with students, and if they are thought to be on the side lines of the classroom they won’t be fully engaged in the learning.

Stereotypes can associate people with anything, but the most serious issues are when it pertains to race and gender.  Being female I often find myself in positions where I am oppressed because of my gender, and it something I can’t even imagine trying to approach as a teacher.  There are so many ways that males and females are stereotyped.  I recently read an article about gender specific schooling.  This article talks about how some schools have tried separating the genders within coed schools.  I have an interesting outlook on this subject as I was part of a project that separated the boys and the girls in my elementary school in grade eight.  I have mixed opinions on how this would work.  The positives seem wonderful, because the girls weren’t afraid of doing things in front of the boys and vice versa.  From the perspective of a student, however, I found socially it was a huge strain on myself.  I don’t know if anyone else has been a girl and walked into a room filled with thirty other girls, and was asked to be around them for an entire school year, but I have, and at some moments it was very unpleasant.  A huge question that I have is that why would we separate the males from the females.  Not many places in society do we see males and females separated, and if a goal is to integrate every student in the classroom, why would it be beneficial to aid in the separation of males and females?

Another stereotype that i find affects me greatly is the stereotype of First Nations people.  Being of aboriginal descent, yet not being visabally so, I find that I hear a lot more of the stereotypes vocalized.  People are so focused on the negative stereotype, which is what is promoted, that they can’t see the positive.  I understand that people form stereotypes based upon what they see, and for some people they only see these negative stereotypes, but I don’t think it is fair to assume people do not change. 

I come from a family that breaks stereotypes.  My mother’s side of the family, and even more specifically my grandpa’s side, has some of the strongest influences on my life.  For instance, the reason I am catholic is mainly because of my grandpa, who went to a residential school.  I have learned that my grandpa went to a residential school by choice of my great grandparents.  On the reserve they would have starved, and in the schools they were given a means of survival; both by food and by education.  My family went along with assimilation, yet there is a cost.  Because of this decision, and all that was given up, there are things I need to do to repay my family.  Schooling is the most important thing in my family.  An entire culture and way of life was given up mainly for it, so I take it very seriously, as did the rest of my family.  Every person on my grandfathers side has gone to some form of post-secondary and gotten a descent job.  My grandfather is an x-ray tech, there are government workers, rcmp and teachers from that line of the family.  All functioning members of society, who worked hard to get where they are.  I am doing my best to continue on with this.  If that doesn’t break stereotypes, I don’t know what does.

OH! Wait.  I have a cousin who has blonde hair and blue eyes…

Stereotypes are unfair, and really unrealistic.  People are made up of many things, saying they are one thing doesn’t make sense.  I find often that because people make judgements initially on people, first impressions make a huge difference.  I am not going to say I don’t judge people on a first impression, because I do, but I work very hard to remember to be open to learn more about that person.  I find that I am often judged initially by people, and really underestimated.  I find that because I have a very bubbly personality, and I have a very odd sense of humour, people think of me as a ditz.  I do joke around a lot, it is part of who I am, and it is part of my need to make the people around me feel comfortable with me.  My humour has often made it easier for people to warm up to me.  I am a very social person, completely an extrovert, but that does not make me a ditz.  I find people are often surprised when I say things that are intelligent in class like it’s something I shouldn’t be able to come up with.  If someone chooses to judge me on that, that is their concern not mine, I am very willing to prove them wrong.

I guess I am a supporter of the underdog, I want to work for people’s respect.  I want people to respect me because they know who I am and want to respect me.  All in all I want people to know me before they judge me, and I am very willing to let them do so.


Dear Technology

20 Nov

Dear Technology,

I have a lot of things to thank you about. For instance today you made it possible for me to fix my car without direct help from anybody. Through my cell phone I was able to take a picture of my battery, send it to my dad, and speak to him on speaker phone while I figured out how to boost my car and get it to start. This is something I was not comfortable doing, and was able to because of my phone. I also was able to use my phone to call CAA who came to help me, but after I had already started my car.

But the question I have for you, technology, is why I couldn’t fix my car on my own. Today I learned I don’t have very many life skills when it comes to my car. I can only now boost my car, I can’t change my oil, I can’t change a flat tire. I have absolutely no clue. Why? CAA is just a call away, and I am the most used CAA member in my family. Maybe I should take the time and learn how to properly use and take care of my car?

This little incident sparked my interest in you, technology, today, and I have been thinking about you ever since. The reason to blog? Are We Digital Dummies

With all my love,
Samantha Douglas

I have always thought of myself as a multi tasker, and I would be lying to say that I don’t text, or go on facebook constantly throughout the day. It is habit. Watching this documentary has changed a lot of my views on my own technology use. I spend too much time on the computer and I spend way too much time texting.

This should probably change, but it is an addiction I am just not ready to give up, but at least I am aware of it. I am especially aware of my cellphone addiction now because I just did the Crackberry Quiz mentioned in the video that told me I have a painful addiction at a 20 points.

Enough about me, lets talk about society, especially as an educator. What am I going to do when I have a class full of students who don’t listen to a word I am saying? How am I going to teach kids to be functioning members of society, which is separate from the technological contributions they might make? How am I going to adjust my teaching to suite technology? It scares me!

There is too much reliance on technology. Watching this video has reminded me of a very powerful story called The Feeling Of Power By Isaac Asimov. When I took ECMP 355 it was something I was reminded about, and blogged about then, but originally I read this short story in grade 10. This story really emphasizes how technology, when relied upon too heavily and not taught in a proper way, takes away the importance of our ability to think.

The society we live in is full of people wanting to go faster, get things done quicker, and expand as quickly and competently as possible. Is this necessarily a good thing? What happens when we expand too much, and the world can’t support us anymore? David Suzuki talks about Exponential Growth, and the effects that it has on our society. Technology is only aiding to how quickly our world is growing.

A part in the documentary that really affected me was the part about the destruction of family life. I know that my texting upsets my family members, and I always just assume that it is because they don’t have cell phones and they don’t understand, but that is far from it being okay to do. It’s rude, and disrespectful, and I know this and do it anyways because it is a part of my daily routine, whereas spending time with my family is not. This aspect of technology reminded me of another short story The Veldt by Ray Bradbury, which I have also blogged about in ECMP 355. Although I am not thinking of having children any time soon, I do think about what it would be like to be a mother, and I am overwhelmed with the thought of having to constrict time with technology for my kids.

It is very easy to talk about the benefits of technology, every day a new one springs up. Technology as a whole is constantly growing, making itself better, more accessible and easier to use, we need to make sure we learn how to use it effectively. Also, because of this fact, it is really easy to not think of the negative sides of the issue.

My goal before the end of the year is to go a week using the minimal amount of technology possible, just to see what it would feel like. That means no cellphone, no facebook, no twitter, no internet, no computer, no tv, basically no anything. I’m not ready to do it right at this moment, but it is going to happen.

Doing What’s Right vs. Getting My Way

18 Nov

Recently I had been faced with a problem: voice my opinion and be shut down, or not voice my opinion and be a part of an organization who did something wrong. For the last month I have been contemplating this issue, and I previously wrote a blog post about this.

This week we had yet another meeting, and the topic came up, and for the first time I truly voiced my opinion. I wanted to make everyone within the organization aware of the situation, and make sure that everyone felt the same way about what was going on. It was very difficult for me, as I felt like I was constantly butting heads with everyone else, and when I finally got to speak I found that people actually were listening. I asked questions, and got answers, and collectively we came to an agreement that an apology needed to be sent out.

This morning I received an apology email to my phone, an apology to the entire Faculty of Education students. The apology that I, with the help of one other ESS member, wrote.

I had a strong sense of pride, that something I continuously worked hard for finally had pay off. I had an opinion, and when I voiced it people listened and acted upon that. When the email finally came to my phone, I finally felt good about the situation.

Previous to this I felt completely awful.

I felt, and still do feel, that I was acting in a mean way, and bullied my way to get what I wanted. I say this because during our meeting I was told that it was me against the rest of the organization and I would constantly bring it up until I got my way. This is the case, but it also is not. If there was need to bring it up again, I would. The reason I brought it up this week was that there was another email from a concerned education student who was upset about the CFS vote no email. Obviously some form of action needed to be taken.

I feel that a lot of the people who voted to send out the apology only did so because they wanted this situation to go away. Although I do believe that now that the apology has been sent there will be no more concerns, but I also believe that it isn’t fair for people to vote in a way that they don’t agree with just to satisfy my wants. The biggest concern I have with this situation is that no one cares enough to form their own opinion. They don’t understand why it is offensive, and they don’t understand how it upset people.

“I should be happy I got my way” …

The worst statement I could ever hear, which reduces what I have done to be just as bad as the original email sent out. I feel absolutely horrible, although I do believe the right thing happened. I can’t tell if people are just upset that things didn’t go their way and are taking it out on me, or if what I wanted wasn’t really the right thing.

It’s a dilemma I think about often, but obviously something I must put behind me. Things like this happen all the time in life, and I’m glad that I had the courage to voice my opinions and got the apology sent out. I changed something, and I got the right thing to happen.

But who am I to say that my opinion is right?

Art and Math Education

15 Nov

Throughout history there have been numerous mathematicians and numerous artists, and what many people might not know is that many artists were also mathematicians. Many artists tried to study the math behind their art, and even just to make their art it required a mathematical background. Math has been used in art over many generations, from various architecture like the pyramids, to Native American Artists who built mounds that required the mathematical knowledge of an engineer, to paintings. Artists understood the math within the art. Especially with painting, there was an understanding of perspective the different planes within an art piece.

An important aspect of both math and art is the golden ratio. This is known as the divine proportion, and we all know it as phi. It is used within mathematics but is also found in various art forms. In poetry it has been a source of inspiration by using the Fibonacci numbers to create poems. In music, scales are based upon Fibonacci numbers. Within colour, colours in the spectrum create the most visually appealing combinations when they are based upon phi distances. In visual art, many artists follow the golden ratio to create the most visually appealing compositions, for instance the painting the Mona Lisa, where her face is a perfect golden rectangle. This concept stretches from both mathematics and art and is just a single example of something that does.
In our education classes we are learning how to become teachers, regardless of the subject. I have a professor that says we teach people, not math, and it’s the same in every subject. We never know what class we might end up teaching, what grade level, what subject, but we will still be prepared to teach them. I have taken all of my minor education classes already, and it makes sense for me to share what I have learned with everyone else. You never know when you might have to teach art. I have found that if math helps teach people how to think, Art helps teach people how to see things. When we see things, and fully understand them, we can interpreter them. Aesthetics, which is the word for how we view things basically, is enhanced through learning about art, and helps be more perceptive of the world around us.

The first thing about arts education is that there are five strands: Music, Dance, Literature, Drama and Visual Art. My minor is visual art, so it is where most of my information is coming from. When learning about art in education classes there are three very important components. They are called the three CCC’s: Creative productive – which is actually creating the art, Cultural historical – which is learning about the art, and Critical Responsive – which is the reflection stage and the deepest stage of understanding. When I think about arts education I also incorporate my own extra C, which is cross curricular, I feel that art could be integrated into every subject. These C’s are what give a lesson substance, and make an art lesson beneficial.

Another aspect of art is viewing and interpreting art. This process is how we critically think about what we see, and really can be extended beyond art into anything. I am currently taking an Indian Art History class and my professor went through the process of viewing art with us, and it was very similar to the cognitive process which was talked about at the beginning of this term: Reading for understanding, reading for analysis and so on. Because of this similarity I have found that I attack interpreting a piece of visual art in the same why I would attack a math problem. My thinking is guided in the same way. The first step is describing the artwork, and I have come to find this step to be the surface structure of the artwork. It is listing everything seen in the art. The next step is analysis, so it is finding the deeper structure. In this step it is going through the technical form of the artwork and how everything is related to each other, and the meaning of why things are presented in the way they are. The final step is interpretation, which is like solving the problem. I found this a really good example, for me personally, of how I think, and how my problem solving skills extend beyond just math or just art.

Teaching using art appeals to various learners especially those who learn visually and those who learn kinaesthetically. Because of this it is important to prepare ourselves in as many ways possible to teach our students. We accomodate our teaching style to fit the needs of students, students don’t accomodate how they learn to fit our teaching style.

Not only does teaching art appeal to different learning styles it helps foster creativity. A difficulty I face when I think about teaching art is how am I going to be able to let kids be creative, especially when they feel like they don’t know how? This creative aspect of peoples lives is often shut down, so as a teacher I need to find ways to foster this creativity.

Bring The Noise

15 Nov

Everyone likes music to some degree. Regardless of the genre, music connects to people in some way. In society much of our culture is laced with music and itself has become a culture. As an artistic person I often find ways to connect with others in a creative matter, and the easiest connection to make with people is music. It is because of these reasons that I have found that I think music could be very beneficial in education.

Music can house creativity, it can spark interest, it can begin physical activity, and it can create happiness. Music can do a lot of things, and yet in my schooling experience I have found it is rarely used. My experience of music in elementary school was singing choral music, which no one found entertaining. My experience in highschool was even less. People hear music everywhere, so why can’t they hear it in the classroom?

There are obviously countless online resources for music, which I can not wait to explore, but the one website I have emmerced myself in recently has been Groove Shark. Not only has this program allowed me to explore music for my personal use, but it has given me countless ideas for use in the classroom.

The website is fairly simple. You sign up, and then you can listen to music. Simple as that sounds, the uses can be endless. The website keeps track of all the music you listen to, so there you won’t ever forget a song. You can add songs to a library and make playlists. The set up of the website is very easy to use, and the amount of music I was able to search was impressive. Many off scene Canadian artists showed up, because they themselves had uploaded music. There is another point, you can upload music to the site. Because it is a website, you can access your account from any internet source, and even from your phone. The most important thing I found was that you can make playlists.

This is where I started thinking a lot. Over the summer I had a job at the daycare, and for at least an hour every day I danced with the children. I had over ten cd’s that I took to work and we would play them and dance to them. It was spectacular, the kids totally responded to it, and I had a very wonderful time working there. I found that my management with the children increased because they were just waiting for me to play music for them, and their attention was focused to me because they liked to listen to what I had to say. We had a lot of fun dancing, and they always requested songs, which led me to making more and more cd’s. This is where grooveshark could come in handy! I could easily just bring my laptop and set the playlists up for the kids ahead of time, or make the playlists as we went. Of course I would have to make sure they were appropriate, but I am well versed in music so I doubt the children could catch me off guard. I can easily hook my laptop up to a speaker system, and next summer I plan on using this at the daycare. I am very excited.

A very interesting thing about Grooveshark is that you can share your playlists or subscribe to playlists. If there are educators using this program I would love to subscribe to their playlists and get as much music for the classroom as possible! Although I have many personal playlists on my account, I have made playlists for the music I used over the summer at the daycare. My first playlist includes my drama music. For this music I had the kids dance like certain things that connected with the music. This worked wonders with the kids, because they were guided into what they could dance like but at the same time free to express themselves in whatever way they wanted. For example the most popular song I used was Walk the Dinosaur By Queen Latifah, where they had to dance like dinosaurs. I also used the song Popcorn and had them start as popcorn kernals and had them work up to popping around like popcorn.

I have also made a playlist with music that I could use just to dance to! I figure if I can use this in any way in a classroom, I will, and I will continue to add music to my playlists. If you want to check out the music I have collected you can check out my Playlists.

Do You “Get It”?

4 Nov

I’m not exactly comfortable with blogging, yet lately it is something I feel like doing often. I have been realizing many things not only about myself but also about others that have been greatly affected me in ways both professionally and personally.

I am starting to realize that some people “get it”. I am not exactly sure what this “it” is, but it definitely shows through in certain people. The more education classes I have the more I realize that most people just do not get “it”. What is this “it”? It could maybe take on the word oppression. It could represent a greater understanding of people, and of life. It could represent this generation of teachers, and how we need to start acting differently and changing things before we can progressively move ahead. This “it” is something I see in my peers, and I would like to say I can see in myself. This “it” separates the teachers from the pre-service teachers. “It” is what I want to be reflected in every aspect of my life.

This is really confusing, and the reason it is so confusing is that I really don’t even understand it myself, I can just see it. Mostly what I see is that a lot of my peers do not have “it”. My first experience with this was over the course of my second year of University. I wrote a blog about my roommate and oppression, and for the first time I not only was starting to realize that some people don’t have “it” but also realized that I was starting to understand “it”.

It’s happening again. I obviously understand that racism is everywhere, as well as oppression, but the more I meet new people and get involved, especially within the education faculty, I am finding that oppression really takes on different roles. I am used to feeling oppressed for being Aboriginal. It’s not a good thing, but I am very used to the feeling. Writing a paper on oppression last year was the single most important assignment I have ever done in my life. By defining what I thought oppression was I really found a way to recognize it in my life.

Currently I am starting to understand different kinds of oppression. The voting that has taken place within the University has had a real impact on me, and has helped define numerous aspects in my life. I am finding that many of the people around me have taken a definite stance on this topic and by doing so they are affecting others around them. Today someone told me, “Did you see that girl right there? She did a presentation in our class about CFS, and ever since then I haven’t been able to have any respect for her, just knowing that she voted yes.” This has stuck with me all day. It is driving me nuts. I never said anything; it is another one of those situations where I couldn’t decide whether to say something or not. I chose not to say something because I knew that by expressing my opinion to this individual it would change our relationship, and I would have a difficult time in the future as I spend a lot of time with this person due to extra curricular activities. It took me a while to realize the feeling I had was so similar to when I don’t say something concerning an Aboriginal topic. It is very tough listening to comments like this, because people’s opinions are their own and I just don’t find it very fair to judge them on that. Knowing someone voted yes in the referendum should not change an opinion of anyone. I have a bunch of friends who felt strongly on this referendum and on both sides of the vote, and they have never once made me feel like if I didn’t agree with them our relationship would change.

It’s very frustrating.

What’s more frustrating is when I am in a situation where I feel uncomfortable like this; the person making me uncomfortable is usually a teacher.

Over the last two weeks a bunch of things just seem to be happening at once, and I have felt like I have been overwhelmed with frustrations. My thoughts have been extremely focused on the referendum, and really not so much with the referendum itself but the actions taken regarding the referendum. Another thing that has been brought to my attention is people’s thoughts on addiction. I am in a position where addiction’s haven’t really affected my life directly, but has affected people who are extremely close to me. Seeing addiction in a person, and how it has affected the lives of those around me has made me understand a lot of things about addiction. Saying that “getting rid of alcohol” would make the world a better place seems to be an empty statement filled with ignorance. Who are we to judge whether a person is “bad” or “good” based upon the addictions that have affected their lives.

Back to this concept of “it”. I find the people who really understand it are those that have been affected by some form of oppression. This first hand effect gives them a different understanding, and I really can see it in different people. Wanting to change things seems to be a huge factor. I constantly want to change things, make them better, and find ways to make things more efficient. I find things that are wrong very easily, and I would like to think its because I can put myself in the positions of others. I find the more I go along in education the more I cling to certain people, and the people I can really trust and tell things are these people who “get it”. My closest friends seem to “get it” and I feel like I can talk with them. I am fortunate enough to be very close with my best friend, who lets me vent to her my frustrations, but at the same time understands where I am coming from. I find her to be one of the biggest supports in my life, and by having her, as well as other friends who I trust completely, I feel like I don’t have to stand alone all the time.

I find myself drifting away from the people who “don’t get it”, I easily become frustrated with speaking with them and I don’t connect in the same way. This frustrates me greatly because I don’t think that is very fair of me. For the last two weeks I haven’t spoken very much with one of my closest friends because she didn’t understand why I have been upset. This hasn’t been fair of me, and I recognize it and am working on it… but at the same time I have also become closer with some people over the past couple of weeks. I connect better with people who are also in education; it makes sense because they have the same aspiration as me. I want to surround myself with these people because I want to learn as much from them as possible. Surrounding myself with these people who “get it” seem to make me understand people more in general.

I ramble on forever, and it probably doesn’t make any sense, but I feel the need to collect my thoughts into sentences. Typing it out seems to give my thought some substance and help me make more sense of it.

Reflecting is a big part of teaching right?

That’s all I have for now,

It’s An Ethics Issue

2 Nov

Recently I have been going through a struggle. It has been quite some two weeks for me, and I really just need to type this all out and get it off my chest so I can calm down.

I have been faced with a decision to speak my opinion or not, and the decision to express that opinion has ate away at me for the last, almost, two weeks. Recently our school has been in a state of division: vote yes? Vote no? It has caused much of our student body to divide, friendships to turn into fights, and me into a wreck. I have not enjoyed being a University of Regina student recently, and it makes me sad that the only thing our school can get motivated about is fighting over a referendum.

I digress. The point of me being a wreck doesn’t have anything to do with the referendum itself, although it is rather interesting and I am well versed on the issue, the issue I have is more teacher related. On October 20, 2010 an email was sent out on behalf of the Education Students Society, which I am an active member in, that has caused me to rethink my position in the society.

An email was sent out on behalf of the Education Students Society on the 20th of October. This email was in regard to the CFS referendum. This email included “facts” about the referendum and encouraged the faculty to vote, as well as google certain topics regarding the referendum. The intent of the email could have been good. I absolutely agree that our Faculty should be made aware of the referendum, and we should be able to present information to them in a way that helps them make an informed decision.

This however did not happen. Not only was the email incredibly biased, although the ESS did not officially take any stance, but the information itself wouldn’t even be beneficial for students anyways. In order for people to make an informed decision, would you not want to give them as much credible information as possible? I did not find this email to beneficial in my decision-making process, and I had the feeling that others could feel similarly.

On the 19th of October the ESS was given a presentation from the “Vote No” perspective, and from this presentation the email was drafted. If the ESS wanted to take a stance on the topic, then would be the time. This did not happen, yet the email was sent out. The email was on behalf of the ESS, and as a member of the ESS I did not find it fair that I would be included in this. There was no mention whatsoever to the “Vote Yes” side of the issue, and therefore the email was propaganda. Although we did have a presentation on the “Vote Yes” side, there was no email mentioning this, nor was there anything whatsoever included regarding the “Vote Yes” side.

There was also no apology.

I feel there needs to be an apology. Not an apology for offending people, that is a nice thought, but it isn’t exactly apologizing for what is done wrong. This is an issue of accepting that something has been done wrong, and working from that to make it better, not being embarrassed that it happened, but using it to show that we of the ESS could work from this.

Then there is STF. Although we can’t get in trouble from STF as a students union, should we not be considering the STF code of ethics in our day-to-day life? I think about it often, because in a few short years I am going to be a teacher. It scares me, but excited me at the same time. From my understanding, its our role to not take a stance such like we did, and to give people the information needed, and to not tell people how to think. I feel like we have came very close to some of these issues, and I keep asking myself: If this happened in a meeting in a school, would the conversation been allowed to continue in the way that ours had?

I decided to speak my opinion, and was shut down. I decided to write my opinion, and was yet again shut down. As only a member of the ESS, not a VP of the ESS I have no voting power, so maybe my opinion didn’t matter in the first place.

I have come to a wall. I have never unsuccessfully tried to get my opinion across. I am frustrated, and feel awful. I ask myself daily if I did the right thing. I ask myself if it was worth voicing my opinion.

My intentions with joining the ESS had nothing to do with any political issues, or getting people to think like me. I joined because I knew nothing about the ESS. Until this point I had no clue what the ESS was, or what it had to offer me. It makes me sad that I didn’t pursue it further. I want to change that. I want our faculty to be involved. “Teaching is Stealing” is a phrase said often in my EMTH class and I believe that we don’t have to reinvent the wheel. I want to be able to have a collective group whom I can ask for help, it makes me feel like I’m not alone.

I want to know that my opinion matters, everyone’s opinion matters. I feel like if my opinion doesn’t matter, then do any of my contributions matter? If there isn’t an apology made I had it in my head that I would resign, it just doesn’t feel right. The more I think about it the more I feel like that wouldn’t solve anything. Maybe if I couldn’t make a difference this time, I could in the future. I ask myself the question “should I resign” at least a hundred times a day.

The ESS can do great things; it just needs to take steps in the right direction.