Friday, February 10, 2012

Week Three At Tully Elementary

Monday – 1/30/2012
As Wednesday approaches with the start of the unit I had a lot of work to do this weekend. Since the plans had been drawn up and I had crazy idea’s to go above the normal for my students by bringing in music and competition, I had my work cut out for me. I had decided I was going to make team posters since a bulletin board wasn’t available but I never realized how much time that would take. For five classes it took me the majority of my afternoon on Sunday, but this didn’t even include the start of my score sheets for each day and each challenge. As I sit here Monday night and reflect on what I still have to do and how much time I have already put into this unit it’s easy to see that work goes beyond the classroom. Teachers are often criticized for having summers off, and vacations, but after this weekend I can only imagine what teachers actually do during these vacations. I would assume they do spend time relaxing but with that they also spend time getting ahead on work, planning lessons and catching up on things that may have been put off. Bottom of the line, teaching is time consuming and without dedication students may not get the education they deserve.

Tuesday – 1/31/2012
In continuation with yesterday’s entry, preparing for the unit today was time consuming. As I prepare to take on a full day of classes and a newly created unit I can feel the pressure beginning set in. I read through my notes and constantly find new things I need to finish or tweak which causes me to go back or scramble to get things together. Mrs. Drumm has been great in helping me out finding equipment, supplies, and coming up with the specifics for each challenge. I know that first year teachers have a mentor and I now understand why! The final strands are beginning to come together and my excitement is peaking with the increased pressure. I really hope the students will enjoy the unit for the amount of time I have put into it.

Wednesday – 2/1/2012
Today was my first day teaching all six classes and the start of our new Minute to Win It, fitness challenge unit. For the last week I was preparing for the unit, and today as it approached I was so nervous if I could pull it off and the students would enjoy it. First period went off with a hit and was a complete success, students were sweating, working hard, cheering on their teammates, captains came out in the groups (which wasn’t even thought of) and after reviewing the results the students that we thought would be weaker, were actually the students doing the best! In the fast feet challenge, I had students breaking records and a Kindergartner get 86 steps in 10 seconds… it was so unbelievable and impressive we decided to submit his name into the morning announcements with the 5th and 6th grade teams. Overall the teams were even and worked out in all my classes today. Behavioral problems were minimal to the point Mrs. Drumm commented, “This is almost scary, how well everyone is working together and actually working hard”. Overall today was amazing, it felt great to know my hard work came together and worked out!

Thursday – 2/2/2012
Day 2, today again everything went very smooth. Students again were working hard and helping each other out. Mrs. Drumm took a half day to go to the doctor, so I was on my own for the last 2 classes, my K and 3rd grade classes. My Kindergarten class made me very nervous because we have turn taking problems and a student who tends to act out. I went into it with a positive mind until the class came, and the classroom teacher said “Mr.P we need to talk for a minute” my gut dropped as she told me ___, a student who acts out a lot is in her moving transition since she is moving to a new district. She told me she had already thrown a chair, and hit another student. She had been in the office for a good amount of time but was going to come down to PE. I just smiled and said, “We will keep an eye on her”. It was great when I got to report back to the teacher that she came into class and was great. She worked well with everyone, tried her best, and helped reset the hockey pucks for other students to have their turn. What this showed me was PE is a great escape for students and with the right environment students attitudes can completely change.

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