Monday, May 21, 2012

Busy Day, and One of the Best!

Today was insanity, but it was the good kind...I felt like I never stopped running from one place to the next, but it all went well, so that was excellent.

* Started out the day in a fifth grade class I subbed recently, where they were extremely noisy and had difficulties transitioning. They're a great class which was why I felt frustrated, plus there is a para in the room who's about my age, newly certified, and I was embarrassed at the lack of control. Today, on the other hand, they were fantastic and a lot of fun, and the math lesson went really well. We were working on multiplying fractions (which is NOT my strong point) and I had two students come up to the board for each problem, one showing the multiplication way and one showing the repeated addition way to solve. Then we transitioned (right on time) to Reading Zone, and about five minutes later the teacher came back. It was a nice feeling to be following the plans she left so successfully, and I really felt like all the students understood the math lesson in the end.

* Had about five minutes to go add another word to the Word of the Week bulletin board in the cafe before the principal found me and asked me to cover in a second grade classroom in five minutes. I was nervous because, again, the last time I was in that room (pretty recently) it didn't go amazingly. Plus, the teacher is great at what she does, but very intimidating because she has such high expectations from everyone. They were finishing up snack when I went in, then we read a chapter from Cricket in Times Square (it's our last week of One School, One Read). The principal came in about halfway through to give me a short assignment at the end of the day, and I was happy that she came in when we were having a discussion about a part of the chapter haha. Then we brainstormed a topic and wrote down a definition of the word from the chapter ("coax") and the students then filled out two responses. As they finished I would check that they used enough reasons and then had them put it back in the designated basket and take their work stations worksheets. The teacher came back and started testing two students for the DRA, and had me circulate to keep the room quiet and help kids, then take one student to the computer lab so she had a quiet area to finish her DRA response.

* After walking the second grader back to her class, I headed off to lunch duty. I made it for the last half of the K/1 wave, and then the 4/5 lunch wave. Then I took one fifth grade class up to indoor recess, switched with the gym teacher for another class for twenty minutes, then switched back for the last ten minutes. THEN I went back to the cafe and took the recess duty in second grade for one of the cafe helpers who wasn't there today. I spent most of the time talking about Game of Thrones and weddings with one of the paras in there!

* Finally got to eat my lunch...

* Headed down to the art room where one third grade class was finishing up their art class tie-dying, and I did the three shirts I brought in and tried to help the art teacher a little (she had it under control but it was still an enormous undertaking for just one teacher!). Another third grade class came in then as I was finishing, and they were the ones I took over for through the last ten minutes--walking them from the art room to their bus rooms and then handling their teacher's bus duty. I had already put all my stuff in the car so I just left right after to make it to class on time.

All in all, it was a really great day. I'm tired but not exhausted, and I feel like I was in a MUCH better mood all day than I have been over the past two weeks. I think I just really got a chance to recharge this weekend, and the diminished class schedule/amount of work is absolutely making a difference in my stress level (not to mention being hopefully done with the Foundations test!) I feel much more positive about making it through the end of the year, and we've got a lot of fun things coming up--including field day on Thursday (providing no rain). It was such a relief to have the lessons I subbed today go well, and a real boost to my teacher efficacy! Here's hoping the rest of the week goes well, and it's short--half day Friday and a long weekend since Monday's Memorial Day.


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