Archive for December, 2010

Socks, finals, and fun times…

December 17, 2010

*UPDATED*

Today was a really good day at work, but I need to back up a bit.  Over Thanksgiving break, I bought a bunch of different colored, argyle dress socks.  I have been wearing them to match my shirts.  One of my classes really loves it and always asks if my socks are matching my shirt that day.  A bunch of them said that they were going to buy me more for Christmas and yesterday, a girl did.  She gave me two pair of argyle socks and a pair of snowflake socks.  I’m pretty sure the snowflake socks were women’s socks, but I wore them today anyway.

Today, some of my classes took finals.  In the classes that did not have finals today, we played review games.  In one of my classes, we played a game that involved throwing balls for points.  I tossed the ball to a kid and it was a bad throw and a boy was making dun of me.  I decided that I was going to throw a ball at his head when he wasn’t looking.  I threw it pretty hard, but it was a little low and hit my laptop screen instead.  Over all, it was a fun class, despite the blows to my self-esteem.

So I think one of the hardest parts of my job is keeping a straight face when kids say things that sound dirty, especially since I sometimes have the maturity of an 8th grader.  He are some examples where I had to bite my lip today:

  • “Can we play with your balls?”
  • “All you have to do it stick it in a pull it out.

All I have left is a half day tomorrow and it is Christmas break.

*EDIT*

I almost forgot to mention the best part of the day.  During my second period, my students saw the balls sitting on a desk.  Of course they all wanted to know what they were for.  After they finished their exam, one boy wanted to try to juggle them.  I don’t really know what happened next, but soon they were all throwing the balls across the room.  They were essentially playing dodge ball, except no one could get out.  I think they were just trying to hit each other as hard as they could.  I almost stopped them, but instead, I said, just keep the volume down so that they don’t hear you next door.  Of course the rest of the school found out about it and students and teachers were asking about the dodge ball game in my room.

-J

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My reputation precedes me…

December 9, 2010

Today I went to a training after school.  There were teachers from the high school and other middle school there as well.  There were about 15 of us and we had to introduce ourselves.  I was the last one and something I didn’t expect happened.  I heard several people say something to the effect of “that’s who that is” after I said my name.  One of the teachers started to talk to me.  She works at the alternative middle school where they send kids for discipline issues.  So she has and has had some of my kids, so I understand why she knew who I was.  I did not recognize her name, but I did recognize the names of some of the other people from her school.

There was another one that was more puzzling.  Again, after I heard some one talking after I introduced myself.  She was a teacher from the high school and I heard her say something that I couldn’t quite make out, but I definitely heard the word “hate.”  I looked over toward her and she looked at me.  She was about to say something to me but then said “never mind.”  It was kind of odd.  I imagine she has heard some kids talk about me and it was probably one of two thing.  They might hate me, which I don’t know why they would.  Most likely they said that I hate them.  Many times last year, I heard kids tell other kids that I hate them.  Granted there were a few whom I may have not loved to death, but most of the time I heard kids say that, it was a kid that I kind of liked, but got in trouble occasionally.  Another teacher from my school was at that table, so I am going to ask her tomorrow.

It was just really surprising that this is only my second year in the district and people outside my school already know my name.

-J

Observation…

December 7, 2010

I was observed today.  Well, actually, it didn’t quite happen.  It is one of those things that I can laugh about now.  A few weeks ago, one of the assistant principals told me that she would be observing me.  She didn’t tell me a date or time, but just gave me a 2 week window.  Well, she showed up today up my 4th period.

When I saw her, I was not happy.  Today was not a good day.  The students were working on a collage and I knew things would be a mess (literally).  Of course it didn’t help that the class was very wild today.

I walked in and they were bouncing off of the walls and someone broke a desk.  Then, when they were working on their collages, they would not follow any of my directions.  They knew she was in there, but that seemed not to matter to them.  After about 10 to 15 minutes, she walked out.  I almost lost it.  I was pissed at my class.  I don’t know why, but after she left, they calmed down and worked great for the rest of the period.  After the anger subsided, I was terrified, because she walked out of my observation.  It looked like I had no control of my class and I did not think it would well on my evaluation.  I almost started to cry.

Later, I got an email from her because she wanted to talk to me after school.  I got more and more nervous.  I finally found her.  She told me that she was surprised at the behavior of the class.  She said that classes are usually not this bad when she visits.  She also said that she didn’t think it was a good activity for her to observe anyway, since they were working on a project they had already started and there really wasn’t much teaching going on.  She told me that she talked to the principal and is going to reschedule.

I guess I am not going to be fired after all.

-J

Homework…

December 1, 2010

My kids complain too much.  Today, I assigned homework for the first time.  We are running out of time this semester and I need to get things done, so I gave them a worksheet to complete at home.  Now, it’s not that they have never had homework before.  Usually I give them time in class to complete each assignment.  This was the first time that I gave them straight up homework, with no time to work on it in class.  You would think that I was the meanest teacher ever, from the way they were complaining.  Today is December 1, we are nearly half way over with the year and this was the first time many of them had homework.  They need to get over it.

On a different note, I had a great question in class today.  I was talking about the requirements to become president.  I told them that the president has to be a natural-born citizen.  Everyone had question about what that means and of course they have to ask right away and cannot wait until I get to it.  One students asked a question.  Now before I repeat the question, I want to point out that this kid is a smart kid.  He wasn’t asking the question to be a smart ass.  So, he asked, “So someone has to have a c-section to be born, does that mean the he cannot be president?”  I had to bite my lip to keep from laughing, since he was serious.  That is not a natural birth, but ‘ quite right.

-J