"If everything seems under control, you're just not going fast enough." -- Mario Andretti
I can't say life has been full of control lately, but it sure picked up its pace last week. I have been trying to catch-up these past few days because there was no extra time to get anything done in the blur of last week.
I should have known last Monday how the rest of the week was going to be. Ya know that errand outfit post? Well, I wore that to go to Powell's Bookstore so that I could get some Dr. Seuss books for the class I was going to sub for. I did not plan for this expense, but the teacher suggested that I bring some in for an activity she had planned. $38 dollars later I had 7 used books (enough for one per table group). Unfortunately, the books were not useful for what she had planned and there was little time to use them. Siiighh... They will come in handy later on though.
So, I subbed in a 3rd/4th grade class for three days. I honestly don't know how the teacher manages do teach them every single day. Now, the kids were just fine- no big issues there, but it is the curriculum that makes your head spin in 50 opposite directions. In the morning, I taught part of a lesson to 4th grade to keep them busy, then switched to 3rd... then back to 4th. Then we all did the same writing activity (making fun poems for Dr. Seuss hats- it was Read Across America Week), thank goodness. After students' special and lunch, then it was time for the real challenge of the day: math. Oh. My. Word. Something has got to change with the current curriculum! The lessons are so poorly written that it took me a good 30 + minutes a day just to figure the goal. Then like the morning, I would go back and forth with the grades, which amounted to skimming here and there. Believe me, it was exhausting (in addition to all of the activities going on that week).
I certainly have been thinking quite a bit about curriculum and split grade classes. Experiences like this mold my teaching philosophy and make me even more passionate about teaching. I enjoy the problem solving aspect of it all and thinking through how I might approach things if it were my classroom. I am excited to gather experience and make adjustments in curriculum when it is necessary.
Oh yeah, I ended up subbing that Friday for a first grade teacher. I was quite impressed with their behavior and had a fun time with those lil kiddos. I also had the help of a retired teacher in the morning, she volunteers every Friday. We had a great time together! The day went smoothly, all besides the earthquake/evacuation drill that occurred while the kids and I were across the hall watching a movie. When the principal announced the drill, it literally looked like 30 squirrels scattering all at once (of course, I told them in a real event of an earthquake that would NOT be okay). The day ended with library and music back-to-back. Fridays in that room are pretty darn sweet!
The craziness continued to Saturday in which I took a the test for getting my reading endorsement. Oregon has the highest score to pass and have heard that many do not obtain in it in their first attempt (it's only a $130... no big deal right?!). I feel like I did well but am not totally confident that I passed. I'll find out my scores a month from now, so long to wait.
If these big events-- subbing and testing didn't fill up my time, my sister left Thursday to go to Georgia to see her husband and on Saturday my mom left for a work trip to China. Without fail, whenever someone has a ticket to fly somewhere, someone else goes! Lots of coming and going in this house!
This is all to say: this is why I have been so silent. I will admit that times like this make it super easy for me to get off the blog-writing-horse and let dust accumulate on its saddle. I have been focusing a lot on school this week since I got nothing done during those hectic days. Such is life! Only 10 more months to go until I have this degree... the end is in sight but distant.
I have another post (an outfit one!) to put on here but I must get ready for tutoring now.