Saturday, October 20, 2012

interventions and careforce

The rest of the week was pretty great.  We started doing interventions with our focus list students, so I got to pull them out of class and work with them individually.  They don't really understand what's going on, but they seem to like it. Most of them don't like our class, so they're thankful that they get to be pulled out (I don't know if that's a good thing or a bad thing).  My teacher doesn't really understand when I'm going to pull students out, so that's a struggle sometimes, but I think we'll get the hang of it eventually.   There was one girl who was not excited about being pulled out, though, which is tough.  I told her about how she would be working with me individually when we have stuff to read, just as a heads up.  She wrote me a note saying how she didn't want to be pulled out and how she was already good at reading.  It was cute that she wrote me a note and I'm going to write her one back reassuring her that it won't be that bad.  It's going to be tough to win her over, though, since I haven't really worked with her before and we don't really have a relationship to build from. Oh well.  We'll work on it.

Thursday, Adrienne and I had a conference call with the national behavior specialist from City Year about our class and how we could try and support our teacher in behavior management.  I think it was helpful, but it's going to require a lot of work.  I definitely don't think our class is long gone or hopeless. In fact, I've said from the beginning that, with some good behavior management from our teacher, I think these kids could be pretty well behaved. None of their behavior is really bad, it's all just nit picky things like getting out of their seats or talking without raising their hands.  With some consequences for their actions and some engaging lessons, we could have a pretty successful class.  Hopefully some of the stuff we talked about on Thursday will help move us towards that.

Yesterday was Friday and we had an awesome schedule.  At other sites, some Fridays are all service based.  I volunteered at thrift stores and food banks last year, which offered a nice change of pace occasionally.  Yesterday, we had the chance to do kind of the same thing here.  Care Force is a group of senior corps members who travel across the country doing service with our national sponsors. Basically, companies like CSX and Aramark pay for them to come and host a service day with their employees in different countries.  Super cool!    Anyways, CSX was having a service day this weekend and Care Force needed help prepping for the day, so we went and helped out.  I'm not big on physical service. but it can be fun occasionally and is definitely needed.  We were at a middle school and I was in the group that was helping to build benches.   We were just building the legs of the benches and then the volunteers today were going to put them all together.
kayAfter our morning of service, we went back to the office.  We had our community meeting for staff and senior corps.  It was nothing compared to our one last year, but it was still fun. I love community meetings because you learn so much about everyone and you get to hear about everyone's service. People's joys, ripples and starfish stories always make me tear up.  The Jackson High School team is next  up, so we'll have to start planning that which is going to be interesting.  I am sure it's going to be a lot of work, but it was so much fun to plan last year.  We have two months until it's scheduled, so that should be plenty of time (hopefully).

It was a good week overall.  I'm still frustrated with the classroom situation, but hopefully with some work, it'll get better.  Happy weekend friends!