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Inside Mrs. B.'s Classroom

3.9 of 5 stars 3.90  ·  rating details  ·  172 ratings  ·  29 reviews
A respected journalist turned-teacher reveals what's really happening in America's schools

In 1999, "Chicago Sun-Times "veteran Leslie Baldacci left her prestigious, twenty-five year career to teach at a public school in one of Chicago's roughest South Side neighborhoods.

As she later commented, "I thought I knew rough. I thought I had answers. I didn't know jack."

But Baldac
...more
ebook, 224 pages
Published August 1st 2003 by McGraw-Hill (first published January 10th 2003)
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Erin
I liked Ms. Baldacci's memoir of her two years of "trial by fire" as a grad student in an alternative licensing program for teachers...which she spent in a typical urban school with little support and a lot of administrative ridiculousness. She writes well, worked hard for her students, and is still teaching today (unlike the majority of her cohort, who didn't make it through the first year of the program).
Kim Nowak
I read this years ago when I was considering leaving my job to teach in Chicago Public Schools. It didn't completely scare me away - though maybe just enough! Seriously, a really good, real account of the challenges of an inner city teacher. The writer used to be a reporter for the Tribune and I found it to be very well done. \
Sheena  at Hot Eats and Cool Reads
This was a great and inspirational book. I love that Mrs Baldacci quit her higher paying Journalist job to work with low income inner city kids at a school in the south side of Chicago. She encountered many struggles during her teaching internship and I feel alot of it had to do with the crappy administration in the school. This goes to show how some schools and students are left behind just because of where they live. The school was in shambles with no stalls or doors on the majority of bathroo ...more
Jay
I think Inside Mrs. B's Classroom is a book that everyone should read, not necessarily because of the author's first two years of heroic teaching on Chicago's south side, but because it exemplifies the problems, pressures and sacrifices that many teachers make every day in a variety of school settings. Having spent most of my career in teacher education, I can see how this book would be an asset to prospective teachers. I am surprised the author's book is not available in paperback, which is a r ...more
Sarah
Although I have read several "teacher" books of the same ilk, I never fail to find enjoyment and inspiration among the pages. Written by a former Journalist for the Chicago Sun-Times, Leslie Baldacci recounts her first two years of struggle in a tough Chicago neighborhood wracked with poverty and crime.
Rick
Mrs. B’s book about her two years as an intern under the Teachers For Chicago program (alternative teacher certification to resolve a teacher shortage) was an interesting if unfinished chronicle. She addresses her trials and tribulations and triumphs in helping educate seventh and second graders during her two-year internship. That part of the book was heart-rending, thought-provoking, and written with an eye to both the humor and sadness found in inner-city, under-served schoolroom situations. ...more
Jessica
One of the best parts about super-tiny libraries is that they invite browsing. I found Inside Mrs. B's Classroom: Courage, Hope, and Learning on Chicago's South Side on a shelf in the "new nonfiction" section, and it seemed particularly relevant given that I was, at the time, hoping to teach in Chicago someday. From the back of the book I picked up the general idea that Mrs. Baldacci was a reporter for the Sun-Times when she decided to make a career change and become a teacher. Interested in pic ...more
Michelle
This is a great book based on one teacher's experience teaching in the inner-city. It is very accurate portrayal of what a teacher goes through when teaching in this environment. I read this after my first year of teaching and related to her experience almost exactly. The struggles that she went through as well as all of the isolation that occurs are very common among inner city teachers. I would recommend this book to anyone that wants to be a teacher or anyone that wants to know what teaching ...more
Gretchen
Believe it or not, but in 2001 there was a huge teacher shortage. People were leaving their professions to become teachers. It is amazing how much our world changes. I hope that it will go full circle and that we have another teacher shortage. This book was a great perspective on Mrs. B's first year as a struggling teacher at a school in Chicago.
F.
I had used a variety of books in the past to have my students read as part of their course with me on Foundations of Education.

Inside Mrs. B's Classroom, readers can actually imagine themselves in Mrs. B's class as she describes the typical day of school in Chicago's South Side. To continue reading, go http://tinyurl.com/2v8yj98
Jien
The foreshadowing in this book was annoying. She would bring up something interesting that wouldn't happen until much later in the book. This succeeded in making me angry at the author as I was reading for bringing something up and then not talking about it for another hundred pages. Overall the story was mostly worthwhile.
Mark Isero
I like Mrs. B. She tells good stories and gives specific suggestions. Although I would never suggest that a teacher follow the practices of a teacher they've read about, I would say that reading these kinds of teacher narratives, especially during the summer, can recharge teachers to get them ready for the new year.
Tracy
I Writer for 25 years for the Sun-Times, Leslie Baldacci decides to become a teacher to help the children of Chicago & teach in their inner city schools. Taking a 2/3's pay cut and giving up a lot of sleep, she bravely does what it takes to change the world one student at a time. Very moving and inspiring!
Sarah G.
At the beginning, I kept hoping she would fail because her classroom seemed too idealistic. But she kept it real and it reminded me of why I'm still teaching (not just for summer holiday). I definitely related to her experience, and maybe someday there'll be one about Miz G's classroom.
Terry
I cannot understand why this edition is so difficult to find, and why a paperback edition was never issued. An excellent book on the genre (a kindhearted person who cares about education and poverty takes a teaching job with eye-opening and heart-rending results).
Myriam
The author signed up for this experience and yet complained about mostly everything. Troubled students are found everywhere, not just in the inner city and not just minorities. My opinion of the book went downhill when she said she was in 'poverty', now really?
Yasmin
Yeah yeah, I finished this in one day. To be fair, I did have a long commute which is when the bulk of the reading took place. (To continue being fair...let's be honest, guys: this is not unusual.)
Magersdorf
This book reinforced my opinion that working conditions for teachers makes a huge difference in the quality of teaching. Also, schools cannot replace stable, functional families.
Christine Barry
This book is good account of life inside a CPS school and the life of a teacher. I could relate to some of the scenarios and saw parts of myself in Mrs. B.
A good read!
Gail
Very interesting read, especially for those who are considering entering the teaching field, and will be working with inner-city kids.
Very realistic. Very touching.
Colleen Conley
This book really opened my eyes on how different schools and children can be. I don't think I could last a day on the south side as a teacher!
Rachel
Good read for a teacher in training. Very disheartening to learn that she gave up teaching after only three years.
Monica
This is a wonderful book. It has given me so much mortovation to get back in the classroom and make a difference.
Rebecca
"Try to imagine a job so stressful it gives you hives. But [they don't:] quit over hives." (pg. 87)
Vicky
This was a very inspiring book that I read to get me motivated for my upcoming school year :)
Stephen Brown
I might read this some time in the future.
Tanjua
Reminded me of teaching in the inner city
Trish
Great teacher book!
Cindy Hoose
Cindy Hoose marked it as to-read
Jul 01, 2015
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