Category Archives: Uncategorized

Things that scare me.

At some point this month Grace Bonney of Design Sponge wrote an article about things that scare her.  It started a few years back and a bunch of design and lifestyle bloggers jumped on board and did it then.  I can’t remember if MTBoS jumped in or not but we were a smaller community then and maybe it wasn’t such a thing.  Anyway, I thought this week I’d follow Grace’s lead and write the five things I am afraid of.

1. I am afraid I am not doing enough.

This one is pretty straight forward.  I spend a ton of time worrying about that one kid and what they are having for dinner or that other kid and how they are suddenly failing all their classes.  How do I help?  Can I help? Should I help?

2. I am afraid I am gonna piss off my colleagues or my boss.

I am not an easy person to like.  I have strong options and almost no ability to shut up sometimes.  I would like to do more things and different things and I need the support of my colleagues and my boss to do this.  So, how do I balance the line between saying what is important and not being unbelievably difficult?

3. I’m scared I will get depressed again and it will ruin my life (again).

I don’t know how to explain this one.  It is just always there.  Hanging out.

4. I’m scared I am too introverted. People who meet me and don’t know me think this is ridiculous.  I am good in a crowd.  I can make friends at work and, as I said earlier, I have no fear sharing my thoughts or feelings.  But here’s the thing, I require MAJOR recharge time.  If I go out two or more evenings in a week I pretty much want to spend the weekend alone.  If I can think of an excuse not to leave my house I will probably take it.  I don’t really want to do things on the weekend.  This leads in my last and probably biggest fear.

5. I am afraid I will never find a partner.

I don’t think I am terribly easy to like and I don’t like people terribly easily.  How the hell does that lead to a relationship?

Anyways, thanks for listening to my over share.  If you’re interested in joining I’m hash tagging this #5fears

Personal Stuffs: This next week has a lot of things happening in the evenings.  I am preparing myself for this.

Classroom Stuffs: I did some really hope to continue that this week.

Personal Change: I walked 3 days this week.  I hope to do the same this week.  Also I used the Konmari method to clean my closet, next week I tackle my books.

Classroom Change: I’m just going to try to live through the crazy this week.

Reading: I’m working my way through The Life Changing Making of Tidying Up.  This is how I cleaned my closet.

Watching: Not much at all.  There was a lot happening this week.

Your assigned reading: Or really watching this week: Amy Schumer is AMAZING. 

Dear Children,

Dear Children (or as I like to call you monsters),

You took a survey back in January.  It had about 100 questions on it.  It was REALLY long.  Some of them were about drug use.  We spent a long time googling skittles to find out what those were (still unclear).  In that survey it asked you to rate the following statement,

I believe that an adult on campus cares about my well being

agree, mostly agree, somewhat agree, disagree

Only 40% of the 9th graders put agree. I don’t know what to do with that.  I am so very very sad. I am also super pissed.  In fact when we talked about it in class today I told you we were in a fight.  You didn’t really believe me.  I should of said this:

I really truly care about you.  Sometimes I stay up at night worrying about you.  I love this job.  I work incredibly hard to get you to do math not because I think math is the most important thing but because I think that if you can be successful in my class you can take that and transfer it to other classes. I say that so you understand I push you not because I care about your no marks but because I care about you. I care that you feel smart and important and respected.

I’m sorry if I haven’t been doing a good job of making you feel that way lately.

Sincerely,

Ms. Schwartz

In other news:

Personal Stuffs: Joanna was here! Two best friends visiting in a month.  I have also been working on handwriting letters.  I’ve sent probably 16 in the last 2 months.  Want one?  Email me your real life address.

Classroom Stuffs: I’ve been a bit out of sorts since spring break I want to focus back in and get good again.

Personal Change: Started walking this week.  I’ve done about 4/6 days about 2.5 miles.

Classroom Change: I need to focus back in on student voice and how they talk to each other. 

Reading: I JUST READ THE MARTIAN!!!!!!! It was the best book I’ve read in year.  Buy it and read it so good.

Watching: Marvel’s Daredevil on Netflix.  Netflix is really doing it right.

Your assigned reading: I’ve just bought this book and it’s on it’s way.  Also, this article hit home hard.

Two last things.

1.  I am really excited about Hilz.  I need her to put out some t-shirts now.

2. I am thinking about a post called supporting friends with loved ones with cancer.  I have a lot right now.  Any advice?

International Women’s Day

I am remarkably lucky.  I am also remarkably privileged but I truly believe that there is luck there, too.

Today I am celebrating the women who were doing the work before I was born.  My grandmother who was a nurse and bucked tradition by not marrying until her thirties.  My other grandmother who just turned 101 and was the first Jewish nurse in Toronto.  My mother and her friends who despite (or possibly because of) incredibly different belief systems have remained friends for over 20 years.  These women showed me what strong women look like. They were the mayor and school board members, they ran organizations for suicide prevention and raised children.  They demonstrate to me what womanhood looks like. They are what I want to be.

I am celebrating my peers and the work we do.  We study writing and make art.  We work with children, college students, and adults.  We spread tolerance and love.  We talk about important issues and support each other’s endeavors.  We push the definitions of feminism to make sure all women all included and we work on ourselves and our friendships.

I am celebrating the girls I teach and have taught.  The girls who are working on becoming women.  Who are finding their places in the world and learning to express themselves within that. They are fighting the good fight for equality and change.  They are learning younger how to love people for who they are.  They are amazing.

Happy International Women’s Day.

Personal Stuffs: Sarah was here!!!! She’s my bff from Hawaii and it was an amazing weekend.

Classroom Stuffs: I am caught up on all my work!!!!!!

Personal Change: Yoga this week?  Maybe?

Classroom Change: We are starting our game designing this week.  YAYAYAYAYAYYAY.

Reading: I am (still) listening to the Mistborn series still.  I (still) like it.  (STILL)

Watching: Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt!!!  It was sooooo good.

Your assigned reading: JOMO, the opposite of FOMO.

Things I am thinking about.

How am I balancing support and agency?

How am I making sure that my last class does not get a more annoyed version of me?

Do the students know how much I like them?

When am I not setting them up to meet expectations?

What is my fault?

When is fault okay and when should I give everyone a break?

Have I dived so deep in to this world of teaching and math that I am losing some of my other important works?

Am I doing a good enough job? Is there such a thing?

#shutupandduckface

I miss your face.

Last year a wrote a post about selfies and about how I consider myself to be hot.  That post turned itself in to this one.  Which takes you to the #shutupandduckface challenge.  I, Anne Schwartz, challenge you, insert name here, to take a picture of yourself everyday for the month of March.  Here’s a little bit of what I wrote last year (if clicking the link as just too damn hard):

For the next month I will be taking selfies and posting them on the internet. I’m using Instagram and the hashtag #shutupandduckface.  You need an instagram account to do this.  I am 90% sure to have instagram you need a smartphone or tablet.  Just download the app and get on it.  If you just want to do this on the twitters I’m into that, too.

There are no rules.  A selfie is what you make it.  Really love your shoes today?  Take that.  Mastered eyeliner?  I wanna see. Ran three miles and are a sweaty mess?  Rock that shit. I’m impressed.

Here is my first entry to soon be on instagram.  I call it, “What Saturday looks like or I haven’t showered since Thursday.”

So this year’s could be called, “What Sunday looks  like or I haven’t showered since Friday.” *

Photo on 3-1-15 at 10.35 AM #2

Personal Stuffs: Blah.  I wrote the last one of these on Thursday so not much has changed.  There is a lot of rain right now.

Classroom Stuffs: I am behind on grading (again)  whoops.

Personal Change: I’ve been balancing work life better.  Oh! And I’m going to the DR in March!

Classroom Change: Excited about the freshman doing a probability unit.  I let them make a list from 1-20 of things and each day we roll the die and whatever it lands on we do. :)

Reading: I am (still) listening to the Mistborn series still.  I (still) like it.

Watching: ummm…. Old episodes of Crossing Jordan.

Your assigned reading: Guys, net neutrality is importante.

*I am really bad at showering.

Appreciation.

I appreciate my students, who make me feel like I am doing something good.

I appreciate my colleagues, who are the best team of people I have ever worked with.

I appreciate this place I live and the things I have.  My life is really fantastic.

I appreciate you for allowing me this space.

Personal Stuffs: I am super late with this because this week has been rough.  Oh hai, insane migraine of Wednesday.

Classroom Stuffs: I am behind on grading because this week has kicked my ass and I am too tired to say late.

Personal Change: Nothing?  That’s not good.  oops.

Classroom Change: Must finish game for model of game presentation and also get on top of grading.

Reading: I am listening to the Mistborn series still.  I still like it.

Watching: Who knows. Oh, I watched a movie called Love, Rosie.  It was real cute.

Your assigned reading: Just in case you need an emergency dance party. 

Strength.

I am reading a book right now called Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson and one of the main character is a 16 year old girl.  In the book he describes her as strong and by all accounts she is.  She has survives on the streets, through beatings and hunger.  She is deemed useful in a time when most women like her would be dismissed or sold to a whore house.  When I was searching around online for reviews of the book I found a creeping pattern.  A pattern of reviews that denied her strength.  It was essentially what I am now referring to as the Sansa Stark problem.  She doesn’t act like a man, she isn’t always yelling or screaming, she doesn’t always fight back, she survives.  There is strength in that.  There is strength in fighting quietly.  There is strength in ways that are not overt.

Personal Stuffs: I walked like ten miles this weekend.  It’s not a lot but it’s something.  I am doing something.

Classroom Stuffs: I am so impressed with my students lately.  They are working so well. Also, we have three day week.

Personal Change: I went to the gym.  Well, I signed in.  So now I have a log in. That’s something.

Classroom Change: Just want to get on top of my stuff.

Reading: I am listening to the Mistborn series and I am really liking it.  My brother would tell you I like everything.

Watching: Caught up on Gotham and Blacklist.  So it was a bad tv weekend.

Your assigned reading: The story of a pregnant photo journalist.

Week 5. Not much.

Not much to report here.  :)

Personal Stuffs: I went out with friends twice this week and it was great.  I really like the people I work with.

Classroom Stuffs: This week has been really really good teaching-wise. I think I am making positive strides in my room.

Personal Change: I still haven’t been to gym.  Get it together, Schwartz. (Can I leave this from last week?)

Classroom Change:  I’ve felt really good about my classroom lately.  Don’t worry though, I’ll find something I need to do better some.

Reading: I listened to The Girl on The Train a Gone-Girl type thriller.  It was utterly addicting.  I saw the end coming sort of but also not really.  It was real good.

Watching: Just the normal stuff this week.  It was a busy week.  I am thinking of start Empire, does anyone watch?

Your assigned reading: A little bit of bell hook and Saved by the Bell for you.

Two of my favorites.

Two of my favorite former students turn 18 today.  Once they wrote a guest post for this blog.  Maybe they’ll do it again sometime?  Until then, I just want to say how stupid proud I am of you.  Except not just proud because that feels like not enough.  I am filled to bursting with joy at the people you are becoming and the fact that you still write, text, and call to tell me you are alive and well.  I miss your faces.

<3 <3 <3,  Ms. Schwartz

P.S. Enjoy the snow.  Throw some at someone for me. ;)

Week 4. Ingrid.

This series of texts happened this weekend:

Screen Shot 2015-02-02 at 8.21.28 PM

Ingrid is amazing but you can make yourself real sad listening to her.  The bff was listening to “The Chain” which is amazing and also sob-inducing.  Me, I’ve been singing “Be Okay” a slightly less sad but equally good song.  The chorus is simple:

I just want to be okay, be okay, be okay
I just want to be okay today

It’s an upbeat song, covering chunks of sadness.  There’s something about it that reads hopeful to me and that makes me feel better.

This post makes no sense.  Anyway, just so you know, I am actually okay and will continue to get better. :)

Personal Stuffs: Lots of apartment cleaning, cooking, and living like a grown person.

Classroom Stuffs: I missed a lot last week for sick and for PD but I got a lot out of the PD so that felt good.

Personal Change: I still haven’t been to gym.  Get it together, Schwartz.

Classroom Change:  At the PD last week the lady running it used the term “productive hurrying” I want to get better at that this week.

Reading: I just finished Bad Feminist and GOD I loved it.  I love Roxane Gay.  I think we should be friends.  Maybe I’ll go visit Nicky and creep on her.

Watching: I watched Broadchurch this weekend and well holy eff. You must watch.

Your assigned reading: This is one week of harassment on twitter.  ONE WEEK.