Saturday, October 04, 2008

Blog Hiatus and other stuff

These past few months I have been on a sort of hiatus from blogging. I was not feeling quite right and I had no drive or interest in blogging. For the past two weeks or so though I have been feeling a little bit like my normal, healthier self. Yay! I have also started thinking of blog ideas as I drive to work, stand in line at the grocery store or while working out on the machines at the gym. As usual, I forget all of the clever ideas I thought of when I open up my blog. Go figure!

Here are a few thoughts that are floating around my head right now though:

1) Teaching: We are in such a mess right now due to the stupidity of the NCLB. My district, along with almost every other district in the state and most likely, the nation, is wasting VALUABLE teaching time filling out ridiculous papers, and assessing kids just about every day. We really don't have time to actually teach anything to mastery because it interferes with our testing schedules. When we do test, we don't get to reteach items students don't do well on because there is no time built into our pacing calendars.

2) Standards: Still on the subject of teaching and assessing, why have we had NCLB for so long and not had anyone at the national level question why it is that all states are compared against each other but we don't have the same teaching standards, the same assessments and the measure of success measured by the assessments isn't even the same. Isn't this a pretty basic idea?

3) My Class:I have been back to school for 8 weeks now and this past week was the first week that I wasn't counting down each day to the end of the week. The group that I have this year is pretty tough. They are academically very low and very young. In addition to teaching, I have to mediate fights, teach how to blow noses, tie shoes, remind children to wipe their hands after using the toilet and listen to a million "tattle tales" all day long.

4) Presidential Race: Palin is such an embarrassment to the nation. I can't stand her. I can't wait for Obama to win in November and have Palin take her behind back to Alaska where she can fade into the woodwork and be forgotten.

5) Best Soft Drink of the Year: Green Tea Ginger Ale... LOVE it!

6) Facebook: I am addicted

7) My daughter: She rocks! I am so impressed with her academic achievements, her confidence and willingness to take risks that I never took. She does have her willful moments but she is a good girl and I am proud to be her mom.


Anonymous said...

So glad to see you back and feeling a bit better! Teragram

Not Quite Grown Up said...

Regarding #1:
I had heard people talk about it, but I didn't understand it until actually teaching.
I didn't really start teaching anything to my students until the 4th week of school due to testing (and trying to keep a brand new class of 1st graders occupied and quiet so that I could one-on-one test each of them). I had a few weeks where I was allowed to teach. But then, starting last week, the end of quarter testing began. So, I'm back to finding ways to keep the kids occupied and quiet while I do more one-on-one testing. Those 3 weeks where I was allowed to teach were nice while they lasted...

I have also realized that my students are going to do poorly on the end of quarter tests, because I didn't have a chance to teach them a whole quarter's worth of materials in the 3 weeks between the pre-tests and the post-tests.

(Oh, gosh. I'm sorry - I didn't realize that was going to be a rant. I was just trying to respond sympathetically to your comment.)

Robin said...

Glad you're feeling more like yourself again. Blog on, sister!

Anonymous said...

I so agree with you! Trying to cover all the curriculum in the alloted time is crazy. No pacing calendar (thank goodness), but we do have required instruction time since we are PI school (safe harbor in year 1). In 4th, in addition to the normal state and district tests, we've got the writing test and this year chosen to do National tests. Thus kids have major testing nearly every 4 weeks.

Coco said...

i thought i was the only one having a difficult year...
there are 18 students in my class, yet i feel as if there were 40!!
green tea ginger ale...Mmmm! i love it!
it's great to hear that your daughter is doing wonderfully : )

stay well.