Mid Week Thoughts 9/21

Well, technically today is the first day of my school week, but I’ve been thinking about school so much it feels like the middle of the week.

Tomorrow is the first day I’ll be in the room on my own since my contract has been finalized and Ben (the best long term sub EVER) is now leaving me. I’ve really enjoyed team teaching with Ben and have learned so much just from working with him! I’m a bit nervous about handling the freshmen classes alone since the rowdy boys have responded so well to having a male teacher. I’m definitely going to miss having somebody to laugh with over silly student comments and behaviors.

I’m also preoccupied with nerves over administering my first test tomorrow. I have intentionally given them a test much easier than things we have discussed in class because the kids are struggling with so many deep-seeded confidence issues that they need to prove to themselves they can do it. They have been giving up on assignments if they don’t understand or get frustrated, so I am encouraging them to at least try everything once and then come to me for help instead of just giving up. These kids have never been held to a high standard, so they have never learned how to work hard and with perseverance. I’ve already made it clear that those attitudes are not acceptable in my classroom.

Since most of our kids are at or below the poverty line, I have felt a huge burden to help them find financially viable college options. This has led me to assume the responsibility of military academy liason – I am organizing and running several events to help kids apply to the military academies. The deadlines are coming up quickly (all congressional recommendations must be submitted by October 31), so there is a lot of pressure to get this off the ground immediately. Last year was the inaugural year for the school and they did not have a 12th grade class, so this is the first year any college and career related events are necessary.

My Adopt-A-Classroom page has been an extreme blessing. Room 1007 has received way more money than I had ever expected. I am so honored that you would invest in us and I have many plans for purchasing supplies and equipment to assist the growth of my students (a class set of calculators is high on the list!).

Going into the fourth week of my first year, I’ve been doing some cognitive assessment – how am I doing? Am I managing the stress well? Where can I improve? Am I doing a good job reaching out to all my students? I am pleasantly surprised that stress has not really been a part of the last 3 weeks (other than not getting paid). I have been able to consistently plan almost a week ahead and my planning for students understanding has been right on. I need to continue to set high expectations for my kids and hold them responsible for their academic decisions. There are a handful of students I need to initiate relationships with because I still don’t know anything about them. But on the whole, I do not feel the overwhelming anxiety I was told to expect during my first year and did experience during student teaching. When I’m with my kids I’m in my happy, comfortable place.

Thanks for following and reading my mid-week thoughts – it is so helpful to have a group of educators to chat with over the daily joys and trials of teaching.

Next week is spirit week, so I think on Nerd Day I might dress up as Ms Frizzle – any suggestions as to where to find a crazy dress?!

Advertisements

3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by aUNT pEG on September 22, 2010 at 7:25 am

    Hi Beck! I LOVE reading your journals on your maiden voyage as a teacher and, so far, I can tell that you are a born teacher. But, see how TEACHING is so much MORE than actually teaching? You are now into the souls of the students and realize their needs and their backgrounds and, certainly, their potential and that is something you don’t learn in college – that is IN you! And it sounds like YOU GOT IT! Letting each and every child know their own value in life is so important and your intuition with them and what they are capable of is a true gift. I Love that you mention what you do in classes, but I really appreciate and admire what you say about how you wish to help them with their futures and help THEM as a person. LOVE that and LOVE you for being who you are in that capacity. THIS is what makes a teacher and you are right on! So, you will have your very, very frustrating days and you will have those great big SPARKS in your days and you will have your HIGHS in your days and know that each day is precious and that each day you show you care about these kids is even MORE precious and valuable, especially to them. They will always remember Mrs. McCoy; just wait and see how they respond as the year goes by. It’s the best thing in the world. Keep it up!

    And, by the way, if you go to either Goodwill/Salvation Army or the like OR the “elderly” lady section OR the super-duper PLUS size ladies section of a store, I am SURE you’ll find something for Mrs. Frizzle? Not sure what you want her to look like, but the name indicates a school marm? (Am I wrong on this – if I am, I am embarrassed!!) Have fun with your days…….sleep well at night!!

    Love you…a.peg

    Reply

  2. Hi Becky,
    I don’t know if you had Ms Alice Pembrook but both boys have now had / have her.
    Monday was back to school night and it was great to be reminded that if you place the
    expectations high they will achieve it. Both Jesse and Eric love her.
    Anyway I just wanted to remind you that you live in Las Vegas so you should be able to find a crazy dress.
    Love Kim

    Reply

  3. …of course you are not nervous…you’ve been teaching since you were 3 yrs old! I’ll never forget watching you teach the entire Giannattasio clan; they didn’t dare leave their seat! Well, you granted Grandpa permission to use the bathroom – once. We are proud of your perserverence and love for “your kids”.

    Re the dress – ask any man on the Vegas strip – he may let you borrow his.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: