Tuesday, October 8, 2013

The First 6 weeks.

If you are not a teacher you probably don't realize this, but classes have personalities. Obviously individual 8th graders have personalities, but each period I teach has its own distinct personality, as well as the 8th grade class as whole (all 300+ of them). The first 2 weeks back to school is the "honeymoon period." Everybody is happy to be back, and excited to see each other, and every student is going to make it the best year ever.

Then reality kicks in. And everyone is back into the reality of school.

This is week 6 of the school year, and the end of the grading period. I can honestly say I am loving this school year. After my mom died last year at the beginning of the year, I just felt like I was just trying to catch up. Then things were always just a bit off. The year before the 8th grade class was kind of stinkers, and the year before that, both my uncle and my grandma passed away. This year, I haven't had any personal tragedies, and as a whole, this 8th grade class is super fun. Each of my 4 8th grade health classes has really strong leaders, and they are leading the students in a good way. We are having some pretty intelligent discussions, and they all pretty much understand the when it's okay to be funny/goofy and when they need to buckle down and get after it.

My leadership class is also a ton of fun. I am super lucky to be able to start my morning with a group of hand picked awesome kids. Yes, there is tons of extra work with being an activities director but I think it is worth it to hand pick a class and not have official standards to teach :)
My leadership class had a mini reflection assignment around the Fable of the Porcupine. I showed them pictures of baby porcupines because they are the cutest things ever.
Trust me, every minute of every day isn't sunshine and unicorns, I teach middle school after all, but overall things are going fantastic so far!

Other reasons why this year is going so well:
*I have a student teacher. He is really good too. Unfortunately in middle school, half the battle is if the kids like you, and let me tell you... they think he is the bees knees :) He also is pretty good in front of the class as well. He has been teaching 1-2 periods a day since the second day of school.

* Did you just see that last one? My student teacher is doing about 1/2 of my job :)

*Craig's "new" job. Last spring he left his job at the paper (where he was working 50-60 hours a week) and took a part time job with the state of Oregon. He is home around 3ish every day, and has Fridays off. I love seeing him more often and he is way less stressed out. All of that makes a much happier home life.

*I am taking care of me. This is huge! I am at the gym 4-5 times a week, I am watching what I am eating, and when I was sick, I stayed home. I need to be healthy & happy in order to be my best in the classroom.

How is everything going with you?


Jen said...

Ok now I want a baby porcupine. :)

SMD @ lifeaccordingtosteph said...

I'm glad your husband made the job switch, and good for you for taking care of you!

Angi said...

I'm happy to hear you're having a better year this year!! You deserve it!!

Alison said...

I'm so glad you're having a successful year so far! Good kids make it all the better (I can only vouch as a student teacher/substitute).

I would totally do an extracurricular activity if I was teaching right now. Kids that CHOOSE to be there and actually WANT to do it? Sounds like fun!

PS. When can I expect my baby porcupine to arrive in the mail?

Becky Dougherty said...

Having a student teacher is awesome!! I don't have one this fall because when we were asked to sign up, I didn't know if I'd be staying in 1st or moving to 6th.

I'm loving 6th grade. This particular group is challenging (I taught them in first grade, too), but I love seeing different students each period. I love teaching reading, I love my schedule. It's just awesome!

Laura Darling said...

I would never have imagined that baby porcupines were so cute! That little guy is adorable!

Rachel said...

That's awesome that this year is going so great!! And my sister told me that a couple months ago she thought she found a hedgehog but then found out it was a baby porcupine, now I can see why she made the mistake!

Marlena said...

how sweet!
would you like to follow each other?
just let me know
kisses :*