I get to be one of the “cart teachers” this year. Yes I do. Our high school is bursting at the seams, and there simply aren’t enough classrooms. I had one, teeny-tiny moment of panic (okay, maybe it was slightly more than that) when I heard this news, but then I started thinking of all the ways this could be brilliant:
1. No homeroom.
2. I don’t have to have any extra pencils, pens, rulers, calculators, tape, paperclips, shoelaces, antacids, or fingernail clippers on hand. Sorry. I’m a cart teacher; I can’t haul around enough supplies to make up the difference if you don’t come to class prepared.
3. No expenses for classroom decor.
4. Awesome incentive/excuse for requiring high-tech homework submission methods. Surely I can set up some kind of electronic drop box, and have my students submit and receive feedback on most work that way.
5. No worksheets. I’ve never liked worksheets but this is the clincher: I refuse to haul reams of paper around the school every day.
6. Frequent mini-workouts. What regular teacher has an excuse to speed-walk through the hallways between every class period?
7. No predictable telephone number. Ha! See? That could be a good thing.
8. Pockets. My own teenagers will probably die of embarrassment if they find out, but I’m thinking, isn’t this the perfect excuse to go back to my apron wearing days??! The one thing I miss about childcare when I’m in a classroom is having those huge pockets handy. There’s nothing like having a magic apron on–so many surprises you can pull out of thin air. I’m teaching a la cart, no? I think aprons are totally justified.
9. And speaking of operating a la cart(e): what better classroom theme could possibly appeal to teenagers than food? I can see how food could be a perfect metaphor for so many aspects of a classroom–individual, unique learning styles; ingredients that go into making a greater whole; patience; following directions; the need to clean up after each session–it’s pretty much limitless. And I can bring cookies. I promise not to wear a chef’s hat. (Can I threaten them with a rolling pin? No?)
10. And last, but not least: I’m definitely going to have to do some serious shoe shopping. And who doesn’t like that?