Archive for Thursday, September 15, 2005

English teacher tells students, ‘No matter what you do, you’ll have to write’

September 15, 2005

After a year of teaching high school students, Mindy Brinker said she was eager to work with middle-schoolers again.

Brinker, a new language arts and literature teacher at Lansing Middle School who is in her second year of teaching, said she preferred her experience student teaching middle school in Shawnee Mission to her year of teaching ninth- and 12th-graders at Piper High School. She said her older students just weren't motivated because they wanted to be finished with high school.

At the middle-school level, "they care a little more," she said. Brinker said she appreciated that her students at LMS were well behaved and eager to learn.

"The kids are great here," she said.

Brinker said her classroom goal was to establish a firm but kind rapport with students that would create a positive learning environment. She said she hoped to help her students become "better thinkers, better writers and better readers," all skills that would help them in high school, in college and on tests.

The LMS curriculum, Brinker said, also benefits her students because it is "well aligned for state testing."

"They are being well prepared," she said.

For her part, Brinker said she enjoyed writing and modeling writing for her students. However, she said many of them don't share her passion.

"Kids don't think that writing's important," she said. "I tell them, 'No matter what you do, you'll have to write.'"

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