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Educating Esme: Diary of a Teacher's First Year

Average Rating 4.5
( 32 )
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  • Posted September 9, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Bridget's Review

    Have you ever wondered what it would be like to teach children for a living? I'm sure we've all taught at least one child one thing or another in our lifetime. Witnessing my nephew learning to do new things makes me so happy. He gets a big ole grin on his face and you can just see how proud he is of himself. He also whispers, "I did it!" and you can hear the pride in his voice. It is a wonderful thing, teaching a child. I couldn't imagine teaching a class of twenty kids and feeling a surge of emotion every time a child learned something new. At the same time, it would be extremely difficult to try to teach a child who doesn't understand what you say.

    When I first received an email about EDUCATING ESME, I knew that I had to read it. I've always been fascinated with education and still to this day, one of my goals is to learn at least one new thing a day. Even if it is something as simple as a new world. Knowledge truly is power and I actually have a craving for learning. Anyway, enough about me.

    Esme catalogs her experiences as a teacher in a diary her first year. She's the kind of teacher kids need growing up. She is an independent, no-nonsense, straight to the point, understanding person who truly wants to guide her students through the school year. She isn't your average teacher, she doesn't just want to teach these kids, she wants them to really learn. She's not satisfied with her students knowing 2+2=4. She wants them to understand why it equals 4 and how they can apply their knowledge in everyday life.

    Esme quickly learns that she has her work cut out for her. The good thing is, she knows just how to handle the situations placed in front of her. She's has a wild spirit and enjoys shocking the students as well as fellow teachers. Esme is known to roller-skate in the school hallways and dance during a math session. Not only do Esme have what it takes to reach these children, they also have what it takes to teach her a few lessons as well.

    A wonderful, uplifting read that will keep you doubled over with laughter.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 26, 2011

    Definitely entertaining!

    While some of Madame Esme's stories are almost unbelievable, this book is entertaining to say the least. I originally thought this would be helpful to me during my first year of teaching; however this seems to be meant more as entertainment than a memoir. It's definitely worth reading, but don't expect any stellar teaching advice or even any really useful information. It's mostly fluff.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 13, 2004

    Good, but not GREAT!

    Educating Esmé by Esmé Raji Codell is a diary of the author¿s trials and tribulations during her first year teaching. She learns that sometimes everyone doesn¿t like ¿her¿ way of doing things in this inner city Chicago school. She never gives up though, due to her extraordinary will to succeed. Madame Esmé, as she likes to be called, talks as though she is the only teacher in the school. She writes about being the only one in her school that really cares about the students, and she is the lone one who tries to connect with them. This book was good, but not great. I wouldn¿t read it again, and I would only recommend it to someone going into teaching. I believe that I wasn¿t too interested in it merely because I¿m not into teaching. This book is full of details, but none seem to go anywhere. Nothing eventful happens in this book that makes readers want to keep going to find out what happens next; every event is predictable. Overall, I enjoyed the reading experience, but would not read this book again.

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