Wednesday, August 17, 2011
I Love Cleveland
Today my students got the first of the many doses they will probably get of my love for Cleveland, but I will come back to this later.
Today was once again going over procedures and slowly moving on. It is so important to keep the instruction at the beginning of the year teacher focused until students are used to the routines and procedures because if you don't those kids will learn how to walk all over you. My teacher started going over what he calls "Teachable Moments." These are moments that a procedure or punishment needs to be explained, but it is best done when the problem arises. There were two examples I remembered today and they were when I kid swore when he was talking to himself and when it came to trash on the desk.
Another procedure I forgot to mention that I want to write about so that if I read this when I get a real job I can go back. My mentor teacher had me write names of all the students on the desks in alphabetical order by last name and I color coded each class to distinguish them. Bell one was red, bell two was green, etc. This is very convenient because right away the students know where they are supposed to go and as a teacher you can let a student know if they are in a place they are supposed to be. Sometimes students (I know I would have been one of them) get embarrassed when they realize they are in the wrong place and just stay there the rest of the class because they don't want to make it known that they made a mistake. This happened a lot yesterday with students going to the English class because our room had that classroom's number. Also, it makes it easy to take attendance because you don't have to waste class time taking roll call. You can simply look at the desks and mark who was absent. My teacher also uses binders for the class. I can't decide whether I would implement it more along his lines or the teacher I had for my practicum spring quarter. I may end up taking ideas from both. What my mentor teacher does though is has students buy a binder and have 2 dividers. Before the dividers will be all the graded work. In between the dividers will be all the handouts they received that will be included on the notebook check that will happen every Friday. After the last divider will be all the warm ups and extra loose leaf paper. As students receive handouts and other papers we will write on the board what order they need to go in along with the color of the worksheet. I am all about binder organization. I loved when my teachers had us do this. I'm a loser.
So, after a reminder of basic procedures he introduced himself and I introduced myself. I told them I was in my 5th year at UC and would be graduating in December with 2 degrees. I also told them I was from Cleveland, and one of the biggest Cleveland fans they would ever meet. Some of the students thought I was crazy, but it wouldn't be the first time. I finished by telling them some of my strengths and weaknesses as a teacher. Strenghts: Grammar/writing; organization. Weaknesses: Learning names (there are a lot more, but I want to make an impression to the students that I know what I'm doing). I told them I would be happy to proofread anything they needed me to and my mentor teacher said that I, in fact, proofread all his stuff as well. (Side note: I'm better at proofreading other papers, not my own, which is why I probably have a lot of typos, etc).
Then we went into the name game. If you've been following my posts I wrote about this game during summer bridge. It's the same game but with a lot my names to remember. If you didn't read it then you can read it here because I don't feel like typing it all out again. During the game a student referred to me as "MRS. Albert" and I said, "I am NOT married." Next time it happened in a different class my mentor teacher said, "It is MISS Albert. Let's not try to marry Miss Albert off. She doesn't deserve it." It's times like this that I am glad I am not tied down to someone because it makes me feel like I can do anything and focus more on this job and these students, although I do hope to meet someone soon, but I doubt that will ever happen. Haha. The game was fun and the students enjoyed it. It actually did help me to remember names too! The bell schedule is still weird though and so we got through like half the class in the first three bells, but the last two bells we didn't even start the game.
After 5th bell one of the students came up to me and asked if I burned my LeBron jersey. I told him I never had one, but I would have if I did. He asked if I liked LeBron and I said no. A few of the students laughed and I'm so glad I'm already building up that relationship with them. I don't need 10th grade friends, but I want them to find some common ground with me or see me as relational so that I can help them in the future. After school we had our weekly team meeting. We took a field trip to the office to see the time the bells were on. They were were 3 minutes faster than atomic time. People were looking at us like we were crazy because there was a group of like 8 of us just huddled in the office.
After I got off at 5 I went and had dinner at Don Pablos with Kayla and Adam. It was nice to catch up with both of them, especially Kayla who has been in Europe for the past forever! I felt like a real adult going to dinner with friends after work, too bad I don't get paid at work... However, this whole teaching thing is wiping me out. I am so tired right now and I had coffee and 2 Diet Cokes today! I'm about to slam into my pillow very soon. I really hope that this blog makes people realize how hard teachers work. Although I'm not doing nearly as much work as most teachers, it is a tiring job that requires so much of just one individual.
Finally, today's outfit! Sorry for the blurry, bright picture. I was running late this morning and had opened the curtain and didn't have time to close it and take a better picture. I'm wearing pants I bought at Gabriel Bros. (a great store to but clothing for very cheap) and a shirt I bought at Target back in 11th or 12th grade. I still wear clothes from high school, and I'm proud of it! Haha! One thing that really bothers me about my height is the difficulty of finding pants that won't drag AND I don't own any shoes with a heel, so I look really awkward with that pant leg. Oh well, I'm over it.
Tags: Student Teaching