I went to sleep at 8.15 last night! It felt great to just lay down. I think I almost woke up at 11, thinking it was morning. But no, I got to close my eyes again, some more.
Despite the ten hours of sleep, I did not feel bright-eyed and bushy-tailed this morning; I also didn't feel quite as zombie-like as most other mornings.
So today was an interesting day.
There is this kid in Class A, I don't think I gave him a name, who is a constant, continuous problem. I know what you're thinking, "Another one?!" Yep, another one. Four have already been transferred out, but there were a whole bunch to begin with, and all boys, too. Anyway, this one talks, eats, throws things, is always out of his seat, LIES to my face about eating and throwing things.
I have talked to his guardian multiple times, sent notes home, talked to the dean, given notes to the dean. To no avail.
Today he felt the need to get out of his seat during independent reading. I decided to ignore him, because I'd already told him no talking during reading. So he comes up and stands RIGHT next to me, totally in my personal space, and says "Ms C. Ms C. Ms C." over and over. He said it over and over because I completely ignored him. I kept watching the rest of the students, writing down those who were talking and/or not reading. He announced it to them, because he was peering over my arm. Then I walked over to my desk, and he followed, literally right on my heels. He followed me back to in front of the board. Then, when I tried to turn around and erase something, he blocked my way.
I called the dean, who asked me to put him on the line. This child refused. I told another student to take the note I'd written to the dean, and escort this boy down there too. Big surprise, he refused to budge. I tried to erase the board again, and he moved in front of me. When I said, you will move out of the way, he replied, No, I'm not.
Fed up, irritated, pissed off, etc, I said, "Okay, you know what? Since I can't leave the class, we will ALL escort you to the dean. Everyone stand up and line up outside." The class was all excited and noisy. We got to the doorway of the stairs, when the AP and assistant discipline guys appeared. They took the student and then the class returned to the room.
Thank god Ms F was coming in anyway to teach an writing lesson. She quieted them but quick, and they straightened up. For the rest of the period, they all were attentive and participated and, lo and behold, quiet.
At the end of the period, while packing up, one kid had the gall to say, "She's better than you, Ms C." In a slightly taunting way, not matter of fact. I just gave him a teacher look, but I was thinking, arrogant little fuck, shut up.
Before class, I had asked a few students if they were going to stay and help me with something. They said yes. And they still wanted to stay after class was over. In fact, since more kids heard them ask/ confirm, they wanted to stay and help too. Of course I let them, but the "regulars" from last week were all put out. They were like, "Why are they staying? We're the ones that stay." Heh. I had them sort the huge piles of homework I've accumulated. They got a big chunk of it done, too. There really were too many people in the room, though, there was some talking and goofing off. I figure, if they really want to stay so much, they will not be goofing off. Go down to lunch and goof off with your friends, not in my room.
On a prep, I ran into the dean in the hallway. We talked for a few minutes about that child and that class, and I told him that I'm really concerned because most of the class is just sitting there, bored and not learning anything. That even though four of the bad ones are already gone, "There are still more!" he chimed in. He got the note I wrote, and agreed to make copies for the AP and principal.
Class B was okay. A little chatty for reading workshop. Ms F came in for that writing workshop too. They did well for her.
Class C had just one period, and they were okay. A little spacey, but not too bad. I find that I can actually be a hardass with them. Interesting. I challenged them to be out if the room five minutes after the bell. We made it in about seven. Not too shabby.
Tonight I called some parents who wrote notes on the progress report. Then I set my jaw and called that one bully mother. Because once again, the AP called me in to talk about this kid's grades, because his mother called the AP with her "concern." Fucking bullshit. I really don't like this thing, where she just insists on whatever she wants, and because she's a pain in the ass, she goes above my head, and the AP wants to satisfy her so she won't go to his boss, and it's just bullying. Plain and simple. She did not sign either progress report, both of which were homework assignments. I told her that her son got a zero for it, because he didn't bring it back signed. Which was the assignment. And she fought me! She was all, "I don't care about the assignment, that is unacceptable!"
Then I called my mom. She is coming out here in a week! Yay! I told her about that asshole kid in Class A and she got all riled up for me, agreeing that he needs something I can't provide. I told her that I don't want him in my class anymore; I don't care if they transfer him or suspend him or what, just don't let him in my room for ELA. Make him go somewhere else. She agreed, and told me that I should tell them that, that clearly he needs to be with a more experienced teacher, and that since he "won" this confrontation, that puts me at a huge disadvantage with the rest of the class and I should refuse to teach that class until he's out. I would so love to do that. But I don't have the balls. I haven't found a firm voice with the administration; I'm intimidated.
Ms F was pushing me today, that I need to not be afraid to take a day off, to give myself a break. I know that my colleagues give themselves "mental health days," but I'm frugal and paranoid. It's only another week until break, that's nothing, right? Plus, I only have three days accumulated so far (we earn one per month); what if, later on, I actually get really sick and need those days? (Not like they would let me take them all in a row.) Mostly I just would feel guilty calling in sick when I'm not sick. I feel guilty calling in sick when I actually am sick. I've only done that all of twice. Ever. In my entire working career, part-time and full-time.
You know what I need? A hug. I hate being lonely and single. Lately I have really been lamenting my singledom because I get no physical contact. I yearn for a nice set of shoulders to lean on, hands to rub my back, just someone to comfort me, who will listen to me talk or complain or whatever, and who will try to make me feel better. I don't even have girlfriends that I can go hang out with.