Wednesday, October 20, 2004

What an awful day

Just like last week, I completely lost control with Class B. It was horrible. I had them for a double period, and it started off horribly. About ten minutes into class, I was fed up. I had the students reflect on the class: what happened, why it happened, what you think will happen tomorrow. It was fascinating to read through them. Here, in their own words, is what happened:

"As soon as the class came in the class started to talk. Ms C told us to be quiet but the class just kept going on. And then Ms C couldn't take it so she told us to get out side. Then she told us to walk to the gym's stairway.
...[When the class came back into the classroom] the noise came back and everybody was talking. She flicked the light on and of. And when that didn't work she told us to...write about what happen today."

..."Some people in the class was igenoring Miss C completely. They were disrespecful to her. She didn't like it. She went [unintelligible], she got so made it was the Hulk!!!! People still didn't care. I thout that wasn't far that she had to sceam so loud."

"In [other classes], we acted more mauter in the other classes. We couldn't get finish with your Reading workshop, and our lesson wasn't finish because of the unmauture class."

"I think this class is bad because they dont listen to Ms C. My class had to walk the hallways and other classes was looking at us. I want this class to be good. I think tomorrow there going to be good."

The Hulk thing is quite an exaggeration. God, I only WISH I could turn huge and green and throw stuff. That certainly would shut them up. See, it's really true that with other teachers, or even when another teacher is in the room, they aren't like this. They know that someone will crack down and give them Saturday detention. But I'm the Hulk? Sure. Now, surely I'm not nicey-nice. I'm very firm and no-nonsense. Why should I give them more than one chance? I should not have to tell them three, or five, or TEN times in one freaking class period to listen.

It was awful. Then, after school, the YMCA teacher confronted me in front of the students, and was quite rude and full of attitude. She told me that it wasn't appropriate for me to be in my own classroom after three o'clock. Among other things. I'm proud to say that I remained calm and rational, but stayed firm. My hands were shaking and my heart was pounding, because I'm not used to that knid of confrontation, but I dealt with it very professionally.

So I didn't leave until I talked to the principal. I let him know briefly of the confrontation, and he asked me to walk with him to the YMCA room. He asked who was teaching in my room, and sounded appalled to learn it's a teacher. Like, a teacher at my own school. He reminded them of moving that group, and then assured me he was going to take care of it right then. Phew. But still, what an end to the day, right?

Fuck, I need to go plan for my day tomorrow. Never enough hours in the day.

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