In backwards order:
--I worked out after school, for the second time this week! Other than walking for a week on vacation, I hadn't worked out for like a month. Eek.
--I made four parent phone calls!
--Two of them were "good job" calls!!
--I put charts back up in my room, after two months of bleak, industrial bare walls.
--Last week, the Hydras were throwing paper and making excess noise (like whistling), all week. It continued a bit into this week, and I had to keep them for after school detention yesterday, in their homeroom classroom (the science teacher). I gave them a lecture about respecting themselves and their time, and making sure they and the people around them are doing their job.
Apparently the science teacher talked to them and so the class elected somebody to write a letter to me, apologizing. Then they passed it around the class so every student signed it. They presented it to me in the middle of me discussing Good Listening Habits. I asked a student to read it aloud. It took like five minutes to get them to be quiet enough to listen to the letter.
And sure enough, there was no paper throwing (that I saw, anyway) or excess noise. There was a bit too much regular noise and talking at times, but it wasn't malicious. I thought it was sweet that even though the science teacher told them to apologize, they took it seriously enough to at least say they really meant it.
I told them I would put it up to remind all of us that this can be a new start, that every person is capable of being excellent. I told them how proud I was of their work and success with clauses and sentence diagrams. I emphasized that what I'm doing is trying to help them respect themselves and the people around them, and that these 'rules' apply not just in my classroom, but everywhere in life.
So today was finally a good day with that class, which quite honestly feels more like a relief than a victory at this point in the year. Because I hate feeling so tired and ineffective.