Sunday, November 2, 2008

Coud This Be True??

If you've read my blog before, you may recall that a while ago I said I was waiting for one good thing to happen to make up for all the crazy bad stuff. As an update, there is still lots of crazy things going on at my school (our principal got fired and we have countless random "interim" people all around instead, we were told all teachers in 6th grade must literally be teaching the same page on the same day, etc.) These things are all incredibly frustrating and annoying.

In the face of all of these things, I am forced to focus on the little things :-) One encouraging thing is that we have been given a reasonable lesson plan format to follow, which is significantly less detailed. This effectively has given me my Saturdays back, as I was spending the entire day doing lesson plans. Another good thing is that my other team member has returned from maternity leave and I no longer have to "take care" of the sub next door and do two teachers' worth of work. These things are great, on an organizational level.

On an educational level though, I was greatly encouraged this week when I happened to hear two comments from kids that made me feel like perhaps I am making progress. I was talking to my student who is always full of questions (usually academic, always non-stop). The girl sitting next to him said that she was in his class last year and that his talking drove the teacher nuts. I asked if his behavior was any better this year, and they both agreed that it was somewhat better than it was last year. This may sound like an incredibly minor thing, but this means that something I'm doing is making a modicum of difference! (I know that may not necessarily be the case, but I will gladly take credit!! :-))

The other comment I heard came from a situation where a new student was teasing another student about something 6th graderish (name, hair, height, I don't know). One of my other, shall we say, "outgoing" students then yells across the room, "Hey! Leave him alone! We don't tease people in here, right, Mrs. Shetler?" This literally warms my heart. We have had numerous conversations about teasing people (especially about their names), and how we should absolutely not be doing that. (And yes, in my room, we always use the imperial "we," :-)). While there is still PLENTY of teasing that goes on, evidently my point has gotten across!

Perhaps I am becoming a better teacher yet...

1 comment:

TBW said...

I would be so proud to hear my student say that. Great job setting up such a non-bully zone. We struggle with that so much at this age. Kuddos to you and to that student.