Friday, November 12, 2004

Cleverly disguised piranhas

A hilarious turn of phrase from a message board, and also a nice summation of occasional feelings about my students. Ha!

Yesterday we had the day off. Sadly, the internet connection was down, which helped de-motivate me. I had planned to get all my homework done, since I'm behind. But instead, I sat at home, in sweats, watching tv/dvds/reading. Around 5 or 6, I tried to start planning for next week, but I didn't do much. Altogether, it was a pretty pathetic day, though relaxing.

This morning I paged through the Metro, as I do every day. My horoscope for today read, "Through no fault of your own, today will be frustrating." Nice. Much as I'd like to believe in free will and that horoscopes are all hooey, it was indeed a frustrating day. Actually, though, when I think about it, every day at school is frustrating.

Monday afternoon there are parent teacher conferences. You would think that the staff/teachers would know well ahead of time what the day's schedule will be, right? You'd be wrong. We got no information whatsoever, not even today, at what I thought to be the last minute. I hope to hell they tell us on Monday. We, I suppose I should say I, don't know which classes I'll be teaching, what time the kids leave, what time we should be here for the parents, NOTHING. Apparently it's a pattern.

I had thought about doing a poetry thing next week, and have the students begin work on a poetry book. But the literacy coach told me that there will be a real poetry unit in the spring, so I should save the big stuff until then. So what kind of final product should I have then? Or should I just do one week of poetry? What the hell?

Ooh, maybe I could work on an autobiographical theme. Do a crostic poem, and collect their collages, and do a couple other activities, and then each student would have a sort of "self portfolio." Gah, that sounds kind of dumb.

I just need one or two weeks of plan. Next week I must get around to introducing the book of the month, and begin prepping the kids for the literature circles that start after Thanksgiving. Shit. There is not enough time to do a big plan with persuasive essays or anything. Fuck.

The Teaching Fellows sent another cheerleading email. This one said that not to worry; November is a hellish month but soon the "winter holiday" break will be here, and that once it's January, things suddenly get easier. I really don't want to get my hopes up, but what a miracle that would be. Mom pointed out that one-quarter of the year is over already; I pointed out that if the last three-quarters of the year are anything vaguely similar to the first quarter, I will surely be frazzled to death by June.

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