Warning: This post is basically a pep-talk for the next 10 weeks of school, so move on if you are not interested. :)
After experiencing the joys of a two week fall break, I'm not sure I could ever switch to a school district without one (or a classroom without a smart board while I am being greedy). Sure, we're basically a year round school, but two weeks off at the end of each quarter is glorious! I'm still not loving life in the classroom, but I have had two weeks to prepare for the next 10 weeks before Winter Break. Which is approximately two more weeks of preparation than I had at the beginning of the school year. So, I think it's safe to say it will be a better quarter than last. Let's be honest, could it really get any worse?
Okay, maybe I'm being a little dramatic. :)
Actually, I'm feeling hopeful and determined for the rest of the school year. I am going to make the best of my situation, and stop feeling frustrated with how the first grade classrooms were divided (someone decided to throw the new teacher all the known students with a) behavior problems or b) high energy). Luckily, I have a few gems who remind me daily why I love teaching.
Sadly I have a handful of students who come with a lot of baggage, and need so much more than just academics. I have one boy who leaves me exhausted by the end of the
morning day because I feel like I am constantly putting out fires. By the end of the week I start to see glimmers of progress. Unfortunately everything we worked on gets undone over the weekend and the cycle begins again on Monday. All of his (FOUR!!) suspensions have happened on Mondays, and I find myself making positive calls home on Fridays. Oh how I wish I could just bring him home with me, instead of sending him "home" for the weekend.
My new goal is to Keep Calm and Teach On, even if a certain someone in the back of the room is tipping his desk over to get attention or shouting "NO!!!!!!!!! I HATE READING!!!!!!!! I AM NOT GOING TO DO THIS. NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
So, any takers to come volunteer in my classroom?? :)