Tuesday, February 06, 2007

It never ends - an after school tale *updated*

3:00 - Bell rings, students are dismissed

3:03 - I snag the seven kids who I have to talk to after school. I get one down to work - he owes me 15 minutes for wasted class time today.

3:05 - I explain the social studies assignment to the three kids who missed the explanation while they were in band, and the one student who was away all day at a First Nations conference.

3:12 - I determine why S, my extremely academically low and highly HIGHLY distractable student was asked to stay after school after their grammar class. She totally lost focus and did nothing all class. Huh. Quel surprise. She's been driving ME batty the last two weeks with fiddling with stuff in her desk, doodling, talking to her neighbour, and just generally not paying attention. Then when she goes to do her work? "I'm stuck." After school today, I begin by assuring her she's not in trouble with me (or else she'll totally shut down) and we ask what are some of the things that make her lose focus. We check in her desk and determine what things are a distraction and what aren't. We develop strategies and rules for her to help her stay focused. Pencil and eraser on the floor during lessons. Pencil crayons, scissors, pencil sharpener on the bookshelf by my desk for her to get when she needs them. Comic books and toys OUT of her desk. Hands are to be on top of desk at all times. Let's see how tomorrow goes.

3:26 - We finish up and I tell S, "OK, see you tomorrow!" She stands there staring at me. "Can I leave now?" "YES! haha, You're freeee!" I cringe inwardly. She doesn't realize I just said she could go.

3:29 - My friend arrives from her kindergarten class downstairs and we head out for a coffee, walk, and a long overdue hang out session. Mmm... chai latte. Even better was catching up with her. We're in the same building every day, and seem to have said no more than two sentences in a row with to each other for two months!

4:13 - Arrive back in my classroom. Check email, respond to a few, chill out for a few minutes.

4:30 - Make a step by step instruction page and worksheet to try to rescue my students from 2 digit by 2 digit multiplication hell. Photocopy it. Make overheads. Realize I've made a huge boo boo on the last page. Try not to rip all my hair out right then and there. Take apart packages, fix the master, recopy the last page.

5:47 - Make a list of what HAS to be done tonight. Marking for tomorrow. Shopping. Making a lab report page, complete with instructions for each station, observation tables, and follow-up questions.

5:54 - Plan the week's French lessons.

6:12 - Stealthily make my way down to the office. I am supposed to be gone by 6. Not gonna happen. Photocopy French vocabulary packages. Photocopy workbook pages.

6:26 - Head back upstairs to fill in day plan for tomorrow.

6:39 - Gather materials for science lab tomorrow.

6:52 - Write a few post-it notes for students telling them things they need to do right away tomorrow morning (cause I KNOW I'll forget!). Try to remember where the heck they sit. Leave the notes on their desks.

6:58 - Find custodian and tell him I'm leaving. An hour later than I'm supposed to be gone. AGAIN. Make a light comment about "yikes, I'm trying to be out by six, I swear!" Get chewed out by the king of rants. THE. KING. Once he gets on something, he doesn't stop. Ever. But, I can't complain much, cause he usually just lets me be.

7:04 - Get in my car and head to Home Depot.

7:18 - Arrive at Home Depot and wander the isles of the building supply section looking for items of varying surface texture. Find a few things and stop to mentally plan out my friction lab for tomorrow.

7:36 - Am snapped out of my daze by two customer service reps at the paint counter. "Can we help you?" Realize I've been staring absentmindedly into my cart for who knows how long, muttering to myself and counting on my fingers. "Oh! No, thanks. I'm planning a science lab for my students tomorrow. I was just thinking through some stuff. [in an over-enthusiastic voice:]We're learning about FRICTION!" As if they care. Kick myself for looking like a crazylady and sounding like such a dork.

7:48 - Go through checkout and realize I am SO. HUNGRY. No time to cook when I get home, so I apologize profusely to my body for what I'm about to do to it.

7:51 - Drive through the window at McDonalds. At least I got a side salad with my burger? And skipped the pop/sugarwater? But I did get a small fries, I am so weak!!!

8:03 - Arrive home and woof down my meal. The banana, bran buds, and yogurt I had for lunch just wasn't holding out. (Yes, I've succumbed to my school's bran insanity. They've sucked me in.) Check email, read some blogs while I'm eating.

8:19 - Begin this post.

It is now 9:04. I still have to mark a class set of story outlines, make the lab report, and... and... and... oh shoot, there was something else... [checks list] RIGHT. Stamps. Cripes. I've been forgetting those for almost a week now. There's no way I'm going out again tonight.

Mental note: roll up rubber-backed carpet for lab tomorrow. I have to pack a lunch, too, cause I have to work through lunch tomorrow to set up the lab.

Marking, here I come!

... if I don't collapse at my desk first.

*updated* - It's 11:28pm. I give up. No lab report yet. I suppose I can get up early... or make them write it out themselves. Now THAT'S a recipe for a gong show. Stupid story plans aren't finished either. A friend called shortly after posting, I talked to him for about half an hour, then decided my dishes really needed doing and my brain really needed a break from school stuff. Now here I am staring blankly at my pile'o'marking and my brain is rebelling. Or sleeping. My vote is with the latter. Methinks I'll make my body catch up with my brian.

*updated again* - 6:17am. *YAWN* OK. Lab report. Here we go.

*final update* - 7:56am. Lab report printing. Holy SMOKES, I've got to GO!


nachtwache said...

Oh wow, you deserve an award!! Take care, keep healthy. No wonder the kids and staff gave you such a party for your birthday! Sounds like you could use some help.

Shle said...

horray for starbucks! ! ! Yeah that's right, I noticed you got a tazo chai tea latte... congrats.. But don't fret, I did also notice your crazy schedule.. You're scaring me away from wanting to be a teacher.... CRAAZY! Anyways take er easy - peace out homie

anne said...

Who ever said teachers have it easy!? :)

Jean said...

Is this a normal day or a once a week type of day? I think I need a nap after reading how busy you are!! You are amazing!

Queen Bee said...

Oh. my. gosh. How do you keep up that pace, Hillary??

Melissa said...

I need a nap.

sarah cool said...


It sure is true that teachers have one of the most demanding jobs, ever.

Happy and Blue 2 said...

You really need something to fill in all your spare time..

Heather said...

Hey Hillary,

That is crazy how you found me but awesome at the same time! Wow you are one busy girl! See you at Tenth sometime :)