Teach Like Your Hair Is On Fire

1895 WordsOct 1, 20148 Pages
Rafe Esquith teaches fifth grade at Hobart Elementary School in California. In his novel, Teach Like Your Hair is on Fire, he reflects on his experiences as a teacher at an inner-city school located in the not so safe side of Los Angeles. Rafe is aware he has to be forceful with his students for them to learn, but he also focuses on their enjoyment of learning in his classroom. Each chapter has useful tips on how to be a successful teacher by incorporating fun activities into the lesson plans and making students want to be involved. To be his best, he learns from other teachers ' mistakes as well as his own. Helping students reach their full potential does not stop in the classroom. Rafe also creates after school programs to show movies and create productions of Shakespeare plays, giving the students the opportunity to learn on their own time and find something that they are passionate about. The classes of Room 56 also take what they learn from the classroom and apply it outside of school. Especially when the Hobart Shakespeareans travel and perform across the United States, or when the students take field trips to places like Washington, D.C. (Esquith, 2007). In the first chapter of the book, Rafe describes the school environment as a place that “accepts graffiti-covered walls and urine soaked bathroom floors as normal”. He has a “tiny leaky classroom” with “insufficient space” in a school where the faculty and students are “surrounded by racism, poverty and ignorance.”
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