Sunday, August 31, 2008


I've now done everything except what I'm supposed to be doing. I've got a ton of reading to do for my class (but luckily I don't have class tomorrow), and I've got several small assignments to grade from each of my classes. Clearly this is going to be a horribly disorganized post, as I'm really just typing to avoid work. I don't really have anything to say, as I haven't even gotten into my routine, let alone started analyzing my kids and my teaching. I'm also making lists of things I can do besides work while I type, which isn't helping my organizational skills at all. (p.s. The grocery store is pretty high on my to-do list. I'm trying to avoid cafeteria food this year by bringing my lunch.)

I was going to start the grading yesterday, but I really wasn't feeling well. I napped all afternoon instead while hubby cleaned and mowed. I'm still not feeling exceptionally great, but I could pop a few cold pills and do my grading if I really wanted to. The assignments I have to grade really don't take any sort of a brain to go over, but I'd rather veg on the couch and watch awful tv or even read some of my for-fun books. (I just finished The Black Tattoo this morning. Really good.)

I'm really having a difficult time getting into the swing of things this year. I think it's because I taught summer school. It took so much extra work that it really drained me. The kids were a rag-tag bunch...all those who failed the year before in one room. You can imagine the motivation they had. Plus, there was no administrator available. I had to handle all discipline problems myself...and boy, were there problems. To top it off, I didn't have access to the student information, so I couldn't get phone numbers to call or even send letters home. Even the extra padding in my paycheck didn't make it worth it. Unless they completely overhaul it for next summer, I think they'll find it difficult to staff it...but, we shall see.

I said in my last post that my kids are great, and for the most part they are. But I have a few I think will be challenging. They're just very moody kids. Some days are great and we get along well, then other days...I also had a student who refused to do an in-class assignment on the first day off class, but I think I scared him away. I gave the blank sheet back to him several times and told him I wouldn't give him a zero. He could either do it, spend lunch with me until he did it, or take it up with Assistant Principal Bulldog. He eventually decided to do the assignment, but he has since been moved to another class (or possibly another school). I can't decide whether it's a good or bad thing. (p.s. Another thing to add to the to-do list: paint my nails. I've actually stopped biting them, so I have nails to paint.)

I'm also not sure what to think of my co-teacher this year. This will be our second year together, and I adored her last year. But she's gotten in pretty thick with some people I can't really stand, people who are in it for themselves and promotions and not the kids. So far I haven't seen that in her, but they're the type of people that most of us avoid. I suppose we'll see.

Anyway, afternoon to-do list:
  • paint nails
  • grocery shop
  • make lunches for next week
  • grade (??)
  • get coffee
  • plan for next week
  • make brownies for hubby
  • straighten living room
  • veg on the couch like a lazy bum watching "I Love Money" and TLC


Ms. H said...

I LOVE stream-of-consciousness posts!!!

(I'm glad I'm not the only one who does them! *giggle*)

Tom Degan's Daily Rant said...

I came across your blog quite by accident. But I must tell you that I find it very thoughtful and thought provoking.

All the best,

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY

Je suis une institutrice said...

i love your blog. It reminds me of my ramblings. "grade?" this is a daily question for me. Gotta love teaching english.

Je suis une institutrice said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Andrew Pass said...

Great post. So many of us have had similar feelings.

Analía said...

Loved it!
Hi! I'm an Uruguayan EFL teacher finding new ways to encourage students to write. To do so, we have created two blogs where they are starting to post; however,I think they would feel more motivated if they knew people from around the world visit them and read what they have to say.
Could you help me? Please, visit their blogs and leave a comment. I'll appreciate it.

EcoLabel Fundraising said...

I think the way your write your blog is so realistic and is what every teacher wants to see. It is positive, but honest!

I also found you on accident! Maybe you should post more often, since people seem to enjoy your posts!

jillian said...

Want to make your grading easier? Check out! > It is a great and reliable online gradebook with outstanding customer service and a gradebook that will make grading easy for you.

shortone said...

I'm doing the exact same thing...AVOIDING GRADING PAPERS! Only difference is, I'm reading blogs, not typing one. Good luck procrastinating! :-)

AllofE said...

Hi, My name's Nicole, i stumbled across your blog and love your writing style! I am wondering if you'd like to do a blog about a website I'm launching? You could get a free account.. let me know... it's and it's a tool that allows teachers to edit, manage, and store their lesson plans online... again, I'd really appreciate you writing about it! Hope to hear from you soon! :)


Adam said...

Nice blog. I really like it. Please come and visit my blogs :

thepoorteacher said...

Great blog, but where did you go? I hope you're still fighting the good fight!

Anyway, I think you'd enjoy my blog. Check it out at

muhammad faiq said...

good post! ;)

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Student Handouts, Inc. said...

Everyone needs a break now and again. The ideal is a minimum 48-hour turnaround for graded papers, but take extra time if you need it, I think.

info said...

Exploring your stream of consciousness is sometimes more revealing than you might expect. It can actually be a great way to identify things that your struggling with, things that you are interested in and things that may be holding you back. If you are teaching a unit on science fair projects and your students are having a hard time coming up with a topic to work on, have them jot down things that they are interested in mindlessly on a piece of paper. From this list there may be a great topic for a project.

S Lane - said...

I love your comment on people who are in teaching for themselves and their promotions and not the kids. Sad and true! I'm a midwest substitute teacher who just started a blog on child-adult interaction of all sorts.

teacher said...

Unfortunately,I got ur blog post,it's so unique and interesting.keep it up


great post...............loved it..............

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Danny Lane Russell said...

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Josie said...

I always feel the need to vacuum the house when there is marking to be done. . . and dust. . . and paint toe nails. . .blog. . drink wine. . then mark!
Josie x

Maureen Castellon said...

I swore if I was ever able to leave teaching I would write a book for new teachers. Here is the link: