Monthly Archives: February 2010

Never Again

“Betty” came with her dad before school today to find me.  It turns out that Betty forgot part of her homework.  At least that is all that dad told me.  Apparently they were both hoping for something like, “Well, that’s okay!  As long as your dad came to tell me that, you don’t have to miss recess like the others who will forget theirs.”  But I held strong, and explained to dad that it was part of her homework, she will have to therefore miss recess, but it was ultimately not that big of a deal – everyone misses once in a while.

I could tell that wasn’t the expected response, but I had lots to do, so I explained that to them, and took off before they could try to get me to change my mind.

Fifteen minutes or so later, after I had made copies and got things done in the workroom, I am returning to my room when I dad finds me again, this time without Bettie.  He explains that Betty is upset and sorry for forgetting her homework.  I tell him that it’s too bad she’s upset, and I ask where she is so I can explain that it is really no big deal.  “She’s around the corner, crying.” he explains.  So I try not to roll my eyes, and tell him that I will let it go this time, and I’ll find time in class for her to do it (I’m such a wuss!).  He says thanks, and assures me this will be the last time.  Yah, I believe that.

So I go up to my room, do a couple things, and on my way to the restroom I find Betty with dad this time, looking for me again.  I can tell she’s been crying.  Dad explains that she really wants to do it at home.  I’m thinking, “Great, she wants to take responsibility and do it at home like she should.”

I tell her that she can, but she’ll miss recess if she does.  Or she can take door number 2 like I told her dad, but it’s her choice.  They say thanks, and I explain that I’ve got to use the restroom before the bell rings, so I take off again.  A few minutes later I go to pick up the class before school, AND BETTY ISN’T THERE.  She went home!  Way to go dad!  Way to not let her learn responsibility and that there are consequences for her actions.

This is the second time dad has come and said Betty was crying because she forgot her homework.  I guess she REALLY doesn’t want to miss recess.  I forgot that he had come way back during the first month of school and explained to me that she didn’t want to come to school because she had forgotten her homework in class the night before and therefore didn’t have it finished that day.  I let her off the hook then, just like I did today.

I will not let that mistake happen again.

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An update on “Johnny” and “Daisy.”

Johnny is still a bit odd, and I think he has some ADD going on, and some language processing issues.  Both of those are really teaming up on him to be last to start and finish things.  He doesn’t have a lot of friends, but he is making progress, and I do see him smiling at school and having fun at times.

Daisy is still getting along with everyone, and has lots of friends.

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Class Lines

I am amazed at what happens at the end of some of the lines here at school.  I know teachers here at school who are very good teachers, and even good disciplinarians, but sometimes as they walk with their class to somewhere on campus, they forget about the end of their line.  I see kids goofing off all the time, playing around, chasing each other, hitting each other, or not even realizing that their line is moving.  Stuff they should not be doing.  Stuff the teacher doesn’t let the front of the line do.  But these kids in back, no one is noticing.  No one is caring.  Life is good.

Unless you are  the teacher coming after them, or waiting for them to pass.

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Observation

Was observed in math today.  It went fine.  The great thing was it could only be an hour, because we had recess at that point.  The VP came to watch the show.  It went a bit long (meaning I’d have to really finish after recess).  I actually finished the lesson and brought those who were having difficulty up to the front to work with me.  But we were virtually out of time.

I’m sure it went fine.  As a teacher it was a simple lesson, and most understood.  We’ll see when we have the post observation meeting (I hate those).

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Johnny’s I.E.P.

Had an I.E.P. for Johnny today, first thing in the morning.  In my experience, in an IEP, teachers usually sit and nod and say, “uh huh” from time to time.  At that was true in this case.

We know Johnny’s mom was a bit high mintanance, so I think everything took a bit longser.  And since I had a planning day in the morning, I didn’t have an excuse to leave early.  It took about an hour, with a lot of explainations of tests.

Turns out the tests showed that Johnny has a lot of needs.  He is pretty smart, but his language processing skills are very lacking.  The poor kid.  He’ll be getting about 2 hours a week of small group help with our Speech and Language teacher.  He needs it, and it should really help.

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I’m thinking of making a bet with a fellow teacher who happens to be an L.A. Kings fan.  The fan of the loser of tonight’s game has to wear the jersey of the winning team.  What do you think?  The Kings are due for a lose!  Again, we’ll see.

*****

I’ve lost 3 students in the last 2 months, 4 all together.  I’ve gotten 2 new ones, one just lately.  So I’m down to 27 students.  I haven’t had that few students in a very long time.  What that means is I’m going to get all the new 4th grade students that come.

My new girl is really nice.  We’ll call her “Daisy.”  She’s bright and friendly, and seems to fit right in.  The boy I got about6 weeks ago is very sweet, but a bit odd.  He’s being tested.  Something seems a bit off with him.  It might just be his personality.  All the teachers love him because he is so sweet.  But he is always the last to do things in my classroom.  We’ll call this boy “Johnny.”

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Redemption

Another 4th grade teacher asked me to mentor one of her students.  Apparently the boy has a good family going through some hard times, and he’s acting out because of it.  Maybe I can help.  Say hi to him when I see him, call him out by name.  Hang with him from time to time.  We’ll see.

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