Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Go With the Flow

I haven't posted in awhile... just adjusting to everything this new school year has brought into my life. :)
For those of you that know me, I plan.... a lot!  Of course, adding roughly 130 kids to your life makes it a *teensy* bit harder to follow your plans. :)  I'm doing pretty well with the pacing of my lesson plans, but I'm experiencing leveled ability classes for the first time ever, and it is quite the adjustment.  I learned very early on that my lesson plans need to be modified depending on the class (and individual kids within the classes), but I'm still getting to do much more with my kiddos in a day, even in my slowest paced classes, than I did until now.  It's such a treat.  After my first real lesson, one of the mentor teachers asked me how my day was going.  I looked at her with a grin and said, "I just taught a lesson that normally has to be broken up into three days all at once, and it was glorious!"  She laughed at me, but seriously, I loved every minute.  I was certainly glad I'd planned ahead, since I used my plans for the next day as well. So many of my kids have such a hunger for learning.  I teach primarily life science, so it's easy to make it relevant, which I'm sure helps with the interest levels.  These kids -- especially some of the lowest performing -- ask thoughtful, applicable questions.  Sure, sometimes they tell me that something's too hard for them, but they'll ALL still try.... after a few pep talks, that is. :)  The naivete must still be in me because I still love seeing those light bulbs go off over their heads.

With 130 or so kids of my own, a school nearly the size of my college, and roughly quadruple the staff size I'm used to, I feel like a fish swimming upstream in the hallway sometimes.  The plus side? High heels, a big smile, and the fact that my kids will move out of my way, or at least swarm around me without bumping into me. :)  I feel so much that everything around me is flowing very quickly.  In three months and 8 days, I should be graduating with my masters' degree.  We're approaching the end of our 4th week of school, and I feel like we just started!  We have our first benchmark in 2 weeks.  My friends' babies are growing bigger daily, and the world is changing.

In the past four weeks, I've made new friends, had innumerable interactions with kids, and been to my first high school football games since I was in high school.  More and more these days, I'm letting go of my inner planner.  These days, my famous "Mom planner" is staying in the office at home for major events, and I'm just using the planner in my teacher binder for school events and the kids' sports/ shows/ etc.  It's weird, and is still unnerving at times.  The teacher my classroom connects with has noticed that I'm still a planner at heart.  She laughs at my preparedness in the classroom and planning mentality.  I'm much stricter about my classroom procedures with double the number of kids in the room.  I couldn't get by without my "were you absent" file folders or some of my other classroom organizing tools (more about that in another post).  I don't think I'll ever be able to give up planning and list making... I'd forget too many things I want to remember.  But for now, I'm embracing the flow and "going with it."

1 comment:

  1. We are finishing up our 4th week of school, too, and it has been a whirlwind!! If it keeps up the school year will be over without me having time to blink an eye! :)

    I am teaching 4 classes of history this year which is ALL new to me and loving it!

    I wish I was a great planner-it makes things so much better to be prepared!