Yesterday I couldn't post because I was so frustrated with my teacher and the classes. Some students were misbehaving even more than usual, which is always annoying. My fourth block class, which is always the most challenging, was extremely well behaved, though. They got a grade on their behavior, so they were like a completely new class. I became aggravated, though, when I realized they weren't learning any more than on the days that they misbehaved. This wasn't their fault. My teacher is extremely disorganized, doesn't connect with the students, and is just plain boring. They aren't learning, even when they're participating and completing the work. The student misbehavior is a direct result of all of these things, along with other factors, so having a well-behaved class yesterday was a miracle. Adrienne and I have tried to offer suggestions and some of them are implemented, but he's just not a very good teacher.
I think all of this is wearing him down, though, and is starting to take it out on the students. The students who are notorious for not behaving aren't given a chance anymore. The minute they get up out of their seat, they're chastised, even if they were getting a pencil to do their work. It's really tough to watch and I feel bad for the students. Luckily, next week Adrienne and I are going to have a conference call with Bethiel Girma who is the National Behavior Coordinator for City Year. Hopefully, she'll be able to offer some help when dealing with the students.
Anyways, today was better. My B Day students are a much higher level group of students and just naturally more well-behaved. Instead of walking around and yelling out when they're bored, they just sit there (some with their head down) and stare into space. Sometimes, though, they do funny things that just make me laugh. We had one student throw a wad of paper into the trashcan and make it. When it went into the trashcan, he started dancing in his seat and singing "I made it! I made it!" like a little kid. Mind you, he's probably over 6 ft tall and 250lbs. Another kid pulled his hoodie over his head, but kept it covering his eyes. Then, all of a sudden, he just struck a pose like a model with his arm out in the middle of the classroom. Then, after a few seconds, pulled his hoodie down and took a seat like nothing happened. Last but not least, one of the students I've mentioned before, Lavetra (the one who was heartbroken) topped the day off with this conversation.....
we're working on a map of South and Central America. Mind you, I don't really talk about my personal life with the students, and have definitely not mentioned having a boyfriend....
L: Your boyfriend ever cheat on you?
Me: Nope. Now do your work.
L: He nice?
M: Yeah, but that's not what we're talking about.
L: You sure he doesn't have a girl on the side?
M: I'm sure, now do your work.
L: Man, you lucky!
I think I'm pretty lucky, too. Thanks Mike :)
Anyways, the kids were just a riot today. I have given up on not laughing and just crack up when they say and do funny things. It helps get me through days that otherwise make me want to pull my hair out. Now it's time to go watch the VP debate!
PS when asked what big thing was on television tonight, my students all responded with "FOOTBALL!" Guess we know where their priorities lie.....
"Go forward in life with a twinkle in your eye and a smile on your face, but with great and strong purpose in your heart."
-Gordon B. Hinckley