Let's just recap my current frustations.
I have been reading other people's blogs that just started sbg this year and how it is more work than expected but soooo beneficial. I am jealous of your juiciness. I have not had success. I actually kinda hate it. Shhh, don't tell. I have had about 5 out of 70 kids come in for reassessments. Four of the five are geometry students and one.One.ONE was an algebra student. The quiz is clearly labeled with the skill and their score for that skill. Each day in our lesson, I introduce the skill and the skill is at the top of their notes. They don't care that they get bad grades. None of them. And since that's all they are worried about, they aren't even realizing that hey, I don't understand very much. My quizzes suck. For the most part I give two questions per skill. My past 2 quizzes addressed only one standard and so they each had 8 questions on it. Does that make any sense whatsoever? I'm grading using a rubric but I think I hate it too. I've found myself still trying to give them more points on the rubric if they showed work or 'tried really hard'. I've been using ExamView to create quizzes. I create a bank of all the questions offered for that skill and then I pick the ones that aren't super easy but that I think they will know how to do. What kind of assessment is that? Ugh, I hate it. I am just starting to try backwards design with my coach and hopefully that will solve one of my problems.
I don't know, everything is just sucking. With the creation of my common core pacing charts, my skill list kind of flew out the window which leaves every day up in the air for me. I have not went to bed before midnight the past two weeks and as a result I am cranky and impatient and unforgiving in class because I just want to go home and take a nap. Our coaches are challenging us to implement new teaching strategies that involve more cooperative learning than my default direct instruction and my beloved powerpoints which I was just beginning to master. Every day I have no idea what to do.
I am a firm believer of routines and systems. Currently, I hate my notetaking system, homework system, assessment system, and grading system. Not forgetting my downfall of catching students up who have been absent. I literally feel like nothing I am doing is working. I am working harder and accomplishing less.
I have not been grading homework but my coach has been pushing me toward recording completion, even though I insisted on not giving a grade. I understand that students should be held accountable and I need a paper trail to cover my butt, but right now that paper trail is about 6 inches tall, lying in a chair untouched.
So I am assigning homework and the kids say, 'oh you said we didn't have to do homewoek, and me correcting them by saying 'no, I said homework isn't graded'. They still don't do it. We spend time doing it in class. Which is whatever.
This blog post is just rambling on with no direction because I have none. I can't even complain effectively.
My coach helped me
We have a 4 day weekend and it's Saturday night and I still haven't attempted to do anything related to school. I have a stack of tests to grade and lesson plans for the week to attempt but I. don't. want. to. do. anything. I spent the last three hours catching up on blog posts that just made me feel bitter toward those of you that are enjoying your year and having success. It de-motivated me, if that's possible. This is sad. I don't want to feel this way. I am too young and inexperience to be burnt out. I have already lost my joy of teaching.
One specific class has already ended up being something I dread. I spend most of my time at the board with arms crossed giving them the death stare so they might actually stop talking and pay attention. As I'm writing on the board, I'm thinking to myself, "I hate this class. I hate this class. I hate this class.' And as I engage in confrontational conversations with them, I think to myself 'I do not want to come back here tomorrow. I cannot face them one more time.' And then the next day I come back. I've tried a few investigation-y cooperative learning type things but their behavior and my utter failure at classroom management produces a chaotic mess.
Not to mention all the RTI and 5-step lesson plans and extra meetings and parking lot duty and tutoring and so on that eats up all my time.