Monday, November 30, 2009

A Life...What's That?

Something weird happened the week before Thanksgiving...I stopped caring.

Not in a bad way - in a good way.

I got a terrible cold, and did less work the previous week, and then took off Monday so that I only had a two-day workweek before Thanksgiving.

And I think I'm starting my sixth or seventh "re-discovery" of the fact that school =/ life.

Except this time it feels a little different. I recently bought my first house (yay!) and I spent Thanksgiving weekend cleaning and planning and talking to my fiance, and school didn't really ever intrude.

And now that I'm back, I feel good about it. Not good in a "Yay! Time to implement all the things that have been churning in my mind over the weekend!" way. But a "Good. I can have more time to practice teaching calmly."

Part of it, I think, is just considering going back to school for a Masters or Ph.D in math education - it makes me feel like there's an "out." But also, talking to a director at the local university about bringing in the innovative things I've been doing made me realize how much I AM doing.

~ I'm keeping MUCH better track of attendance and tardies. As an example, I had only two absences in first period today (okay, many tardies, but still...) Last year by December I had .... as many as 15 absences in first hour. EVERY DAY.

~ My kids are keeping interactive notebooks.

~ I'm using Visual Instruction Plans.

~ I got another longed-after custom manipulative made. Didn't have much chance to use it, but its ready and was used a little.

~ I made one "Conceptual Minute" video (I'll post it soon) using a new drag-and-drop programming language I taught myself.

~ My grades are current.

~ Most of my students, when asked to list what they wanted changed about class on the back of last week's test, could only come up with my tardy policy.

Okay, enough patting on the back. I've got 2 more classes of tests to grade.

~ Ms. J