Monday, March 07, 2005

i'm a new woman

professional development is the new definition for tedious.

i've vacillated from being ultra burnt-out and frusterated to a take-charge optimist in one day. during the workshop on rubrics (who doesn't use a rubric?) i thought about how i'm a horrible teacher and how my kids aren't learning anything. at my lowest point, i realized that it is too late in the year to make changes. i'm screwed. during the second workshop on the importance of vocabulary (ill na na), i thought about taking a trip to italy. then i imagined myself independently wealthy and living in italy, drinking vino and looking at bernini's sculptures all day long. of course, at that moment i leaned forward in the over-tagged desk (southside playas) and touched a nasty piece of gum-something stuck on the side. i shrank back and knocked my pencil to the floor, which rolled down the literally and very sloped classroom to the back of the room.

i skipped the next session because i really couldn't stomach touchy feely shit (really i mean touching strangers in general) and drove around looking at the pedestrians enjoying the sunshine. i think it was the sun that lifted the dark clouds from my mind. or maybe the extra mocha i had. either way, i was feeling better.

i got back to the classroom and realized i'm really just overwhelmed by the craziness of the kids in recent weeks (it's official: all teachers agree the kids are going crazy) and by the disorganized, cluttered mess that is my room. i've. got. to. organize. but that's a topic for another blog because i've never quite mastered that skill.

SO. tonight i'm taking the first step in organizing. i had it all straightened out before, i just need to re-apply, re-do, re-think. while sifting through my stacks of papers i found old lesson plans. good lesson plans. and i thought, hey, i'm not a horrible teacher. i'm a work in progress. and i can do this. by golly i can! if i can get a hold of my disorganization then i will have motivation to tackle the discipline problems (aka my kids). i will have the zest for life that i once had and my energy will actually make my kids want to learn! they'll crave it!

and that, people, is how i have morphed into the optimist that i am tonight!


Blogger Polski3 said...

IMO, its never "too late" in the school year to try a change....I have found that introducing something new later in the school years can be good; it is something new, different and for me and some of my students, a chance to escape the routines that have been established. For most of these changes that I've tried over the years, many of them have ended up in that 'toolbox' of experiences teachers build throughout their career. For example, in my upcoming Medieval Europe Unit, students will be creating lessons to teach their peers. Each group will get one of the social groups or events (clergy, peasants, nobility, rise of guilds, Crusades, etc.) to develop objectives, questions and assessments for their mini-lesson. My kids this year have not done this yet, and it will be new and different than anything they have done so far in my class.

Hang in there!

2:13 PM  

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