5/8/09

A Day in the Life (of me)

I get a lot of comments (usually from my mom) concerning why I would want to be a teacher.

Then there are the few people that I know that aren't in education that say things like, "I could never do that," or "those kids would drive me crazy," and occasionally, "I love kindergartners. They are so cute!"

Let's just make one thing clear: I could never do kindergarten. Those kids would drive me crazy.

This fourth grade class I am teaching is absolutely phenomenal. I can't express how much I love them and will miss them when the year is over.I have spent more time with these kids than any other class. Luckily, I will go back into the sub pool and will see them some in the fall when they return as cocky, hormonal fifth-graders.

It's not all sunshine and roses, however. We have our bumps along the way.

I have one student that will not get his work finished. I have another that gets picked on daily, but she brings it on herself. I have another that caused (allegedly) a fiasco in the bathroom. Someone stole my stickers and a dollar out of my purse today--she doesn't know that I know.

You know, typical stuff.

But...

I go back. Everyday is a new day. There are no grudges. It's the daily sweetness that gets me through.

They ALL want to help me. They ALL want to sit by me. They ALL want that one-on-one attention I try to make sure they get everyday.

I came up with an idea called "Did you Know?" Every day I would write a random but strange fact on the board. I was going to start it on Monday. Somehow we ended up talking about it during science, and I told them the plan. The next thing I know, I had five pieces of paper with random facts on them. Trying to expand on something potentially great, I went to the dollar store, bought twenty-four mini notebooks and researched more facts to give them. This morning, I wrote the four received and one of my own. They were ecstatic about it. I put a container by the "Did you know..." board and told them they were welcome to add facts to share. This afternoon, I already had ten...

On Monday, I am going to start a daily brain teaser. I have done this in the fourth grade in the past and this age LOVES it. I can't wait.

Today we had planned as part of the language lesson to make Mother's Day cards. The previous teacher left me her original she makes every year. I photocopied one for each child then brought in some stickers, stamps, paper doilies, and scrapbooking scissors. They could not wait to get started. But do you want to know what they got really excited about?

Envelopes.

I had one package of the large envelopes left over from my American Greeting days. I pulled those out and told them I had enough for each to have one; you'd thought I'd handed out $20 bills. It is a day I will remember forever.

I was up until 2:30 this morning grading papers. They had spelling sentences, and I love looking at those.

Two sentences will go down in infamy as flat-out precious. These were from two of my top students. Bold word is the spelling word.

appointment-- "On my leg I had to put on some appointment."

tireless--"In the junk yard, the cars are tireless."

Sure, I am tired. Sure, they are wound up because of the full moon and the fact school is almost out. Sure, they are hot because the air is not working and we don't get air flow from the backdoor. Sure, they have tattled on each other more than most kindergartners this week. (Ahem. That gets you marked in the behavior log.)But, at the end of the day, I can't think of another place I would rather spend my daytime hours.

6 comments:

Fiona said...

Oh, Heather. I wish all teachers were like you.

Here's a "spelling word" poem for you. I think it's Ogden Nash, but it might be someone else:

Ruth and Johnnie,
Side by side,
Went out for an auto ride.
They hit a tree,
Ruth hit a bump.
And Johnnie went on,
Ruthlessly.

Bridgett said...

Here's the thing. I can honestly say I would not make a good teacher. I've never been able to organize my thoughts into a way a kindergarten student or a 4th grader would understand. I try, boy do I try...but I know I often confuse my own kids. LOL

So I have all the respect in the world for teachers who know just what to say and just what to do.

You sound like the kind of teacher I'd want my kids to have.

And frankly, those sentences are beyond precious. :)

How do you grade them though? I mean, no way could I mark those wrong. LOL

Heather said...

Fiona--Thank-you. :) I love that poem.

Boo-- Thank-you. Most of the time I feel like I am saying things like, "Now, what was I doing?" or trying to figure out who is lying, who is telling the truth and is it worth giving a punishment. My mind never turns off. As far as grading the sentences, I only mark it wrong if they spell the word wrong. I will make comment if the word is used incorrectly though. Now if it was a vocabulary or language lesson....that's a different story.

The other day I said something like, "Oh kids, now we are going to..." and for some reason I stopped myself and told them I wasn't going to call them kids anymore. My education prof once told us not to refer to students as "kids" instead we should call them students or children. Especially when writing formal lesson plans. 'Kids' are baby goats.

It stuck with them, because I called them kids yesterday and they all were like, "What?!! We are not baby goats!!"

Courtney said...

I could never, ever, ever teach anything below college. Even when I did teach a college-level course, I felt so much pressure to perform and be entertaining as well as informative that it stressed me out. I think a lot of people think they want to be teachers, but there are only a few who are really successful. It sounds like you're one of the good ones.

Ms.Emily said...

as a kid i always wanted to be a teacher

i use to have "class" with all of the neighbor kids and assigned them homework and all LOL

ox

SarahHub said...

:sigh:

You are just going to be the best teacher. Care to move to St. Louis so you can teach my kids some day?

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