Two Deep Breaths
My daughter, now toddlerTate, has begun to exert her will through minor tantrums and crocodile tears. In those moments, we remind her to take two deep breaths to help calm herself down.
Tonight, Mr. McNamar needs to take two deep breaths to help calm himself down. I need to refocus on what I can control--which is my performance in the classroom. If you don't mind, though, let me tell you the reason:
I spent my summer reading about leadership and influence. Last year was hell--the entire year felt like a failure on so many levels. I was drained physically, emotionally, and spiritually. I even flirted with leaving after only my first year in that sweaty, humid building. But I decided to stay, for the kids.
I returned to the building last week to begin thinking about the year ahead. No one else was around. I knew my schedule would entail five reading classes--actually supplemental reading classes.
Apparently my previous experiences teaching READ 180 (even though I wasn't a certified reading teacher then, either) helped them to choose me. Okay, fine. What curriculum will I be using?
--We don't have one.
What books are available for the classroom library?
--Talk to so and so; she may have some for you.
Deep breath number one. I'm not prepared to teach a reading class without curriculum. The READ 180 program succeeded in spite of me.
Monday began with our convocation for the entire distrtict. It took up the first half of the morning for recognizing important teachers and casting some type of vision, of which I am still not sure. I couldn't help but think about my lack of curriculum which I could start to create upon returning to my building.
Not so fast. Instead, we were ushered into some professional development that succeeded only at developing my anxiety. That took up the second half of the day. I was so mad, I refused to work past my contracted hours--that has never been me.
Move to today. Like the day before, our every contracted hour was filled with professional devlopment or other business. No time in the classroom. Zero.
Deep breath number two. So, I head into the first half week of school with zero long term planning done. I'm in survival mode for now. But next week won't be better. I have two days during each week when I go the entire day without a prep period. Really. I can't make this stuff up.
So much for being positive.