An educator (and National Education Association President) schools us on what teachers do every day


NEA's Lily Eskelsen García on What Teachers Do www.youtube.com

Nearly everyone would agree that teachers in our country are underpaid and underappreciated. But in our precarious times, teachers have become social workers, substitute parents, babysitters, and psychologists too. Besides teaching the three R's, they monitor the mental health and well-being of children.

In a speech that verges on performance art, National Education Association president Lily Eskelsen García lists all the important work that a typical teacher does in a day.


"We serve kids a hot meal, we put Band-Aids on boo-boos," she starts. But then it turns into an insane litany listing the manifold tasks of a typical teacher: immunizations, paperwork, "career counseling, pregnancy counseling, mental health counseling." Teachers stop kids from bullying, "tell them to say 'I'm sorry' and mean it," "foster racial tolerance and cultural diversity." And that's just the beginning.

Related: An artist built seesaws into the U.S.-Mexico border and invited kids to play on them

Eskelsen García delivered the speech at the Campaign for America's Future awards gala in fall 2015. The fundraiser benefits the nonprofit political advocacy organization, as well as its Institute for America's Future, a research center focusing on progressive issues like climate change, education, and curbing Wall Street. Eskelsen García was there to receive the organization's Progressive Champion award.

popular

Brace yourselves, folks, because this is almost too friggin' adorable to handle.

A 911 call can be a scary thing, and an emergency call from a dad having chest pains and trouble breathing is no exception. But thankfully, an exchange between that dad's 5-year-old daughter and 911 dispatcher Jason Bonham turned out to be more humor than horror. If you missed hearing the recording that has repeatedly gone viral since 2010, you have to hear it now. It's perfectly timeless.

Keep Reading Show less
popular

Image by Brent Connelly from Pixabay and sixthformpoet / Twitter

Twitter user Matt, who goes by the name @SixthFormPoet, shared a dark love story on Twitter that's been read by nearly 600,000 people. It starts in a graveyard and feels like it could be the premise for a Tim Burton film.

While it's hard to verify whether the story is true, Matt insists that it's real, so we'll believe him.

Keep Reading Show less
Culture

Can the teens do literally anything without being blasted? Apparently not...

Katie Cornetti and Marissa Bordas, two Pittsburgh teens, were involved in a car crash. After taking a sharp turn on a winding road, the car flipped twice, then landed on its side. The girls said later on that they weren't on their phones at the time. The cause of the crash was because the tires on Bordas' car were mounted improperly.

The girls were wearing their seatbelts and were fine, aside from a few bruises. However, they were trapped in the car for about 20 minutes, so to pass the time while they waited for help, they decided to make a TikTok video. They made sure they were totally fine before they started recording.

Keep Reading Show less
popular
Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

Approximately 10% of the population is left-handed, and the balance between lefties and righties has been the same for almost 5,000 years. People used to believe that left-handed people were evil or unlucky. The word "sinister" is even derived from the Latin word for "left."

In modern times, the bias against lefties for being different is more benign – spiral notebooks are a torture device, and ink gets on their hands like a scarlet letter. Now, a new study conducted at the University of Oxford and published in Brain is giving left-handers some good news. While left-handers have been struggling with tools meant for right-handers all these years, it turns out, they actually possess superior verbal skills.

Researchers looked at the DNA of 400,000 people in the U.K. from a volunteer bank. Of those 400,000 people, 38,332 were southpaws. Scientists were able to find the differences in genes between lefties and righties, and that these genetic variants resulted in a difference in brain structure, too. "It tells us for the first time that handedness has a genetic component," Gwenaëlle Douaud, joint senior author of the study and a fellow at Oxford's Wellcome Centre for Integrative Neuroimaging, told the BBC.

Keep Reading Show less
popular