Saturday, February 12, 2011

RollerCoaster Week

Ugh! This was the LONGEST week ever: I was cranky, the kids are overwhelmed, I was getting over a cold and coughing "wetly" all week, we started TAKS tutoring during our advisory periods, I had to pick up a cell phone from a stealth texter, we had two meetings that took up morning planning time, and on and on and on.

Then the capper was on Thursday after school when I had students staying for tutoring and retesting of math concepts. I was going along on my merry way, and one of the girls decided to "share" with me, "you know, Ms. ____, in class, we're not laughing WITH you; we're laughing AT you."

Thanks. That basically put the final sour grapes on my week. She was smiling the whole time. She's also the girl that when I'd lost my voice a few weeks ago and was rallying on teaching in a harsh whisper ALL week, said one day, "oh! Ms. ____. Your voice!". Thinking she was commiserating with me, I said/rasped, "I know. It doesn't hurt, though." Then she said, with a pained expression and her hands over her ears, "no. I mean my ears. You're hurting my ears." ....

Anyway. So I went into work on Friday in a miserable mood, grumbling and muttering to myself about the ungrateful little tykes, and I open up this e-mail from a former student:

You have been on my mind. How have you been? I'm at _____ doing my clinicals. I'm level 1 nursing. You would be so proud. thank you I owe you so much you are a wonderful person.

That turned things around 540 degrees! Here was a student that had gotten pregnant her junior year, and somehow figured out a way to graduate and move on with her life and now is a successful nursing student. Love her! And SO appreciate her taking the time to basically make my week end on a great note.


  1. Anonymous10:13 AM

    It's been that kind of week in schools all over the country, I think. Certainly in my school in the San Francisco Bay area. Listen to the nursing student and not the Mean girl. I'm certain the letter writer is the one who's got it right. PS. When I have laryngitis, my school provides a mike/speaker combo, that actually helps and the students think its hysterical.

  2. I am so glad your story turned around at the end there!! That girl in your class sounds really like she's being nasty for no reason -- don't take it personally, it's a reflection of the lacks and insecurities in her life, not a reflection of what you're doing!

    Hang in there.

  3. LadyMath: Hah! A microphone ... I didn't even think about that, and would have enjoyed sounding like Darth Vader.

    Mimi: thanks ... she IS part of the mean girl crowd, and it was bad timing on her part. Brat. ... before I forget, I adapted part of one of your measurement activities to use with my engineering class when we discussed metric and english units. We had fun calculating our age in seconds, and our height in cm.

  4. Hope you feel better this week. Do all your students have to do TAKS tutorials? It seems a little early to start cramming TAKS down their throat. Yuck!

  5. Hi Mrs. H ... Wellllll, we gave the MOY, and decided a cut off for kids we'll give extra help to, and now for the next 10 weeks (one per objective) I/we work with them once a week during advisory just doing released test problems and reviewing algebra and calculator skills. About 33% of our 10th graders (for example) are remediated. Sheesh, put THAT way, it's a lot.

    In better news, I'm finally seeing, "King's Speech" tonight. Very excited. ... Have a great weekend/week.

  6. THANK YOU!!! I needed to hear this from another teacher. Hard week on this end too. Gave a test on Thursday...almost 50% of my students walked into class and had NO idea that there was a test, and some of my students that are actually with it.
    It is nice to be reminded that it isn't just me!

  7. Anonymous8:48 PM

    Just because ONE girl (and her little group) is laughing at you does not mean that the whole class is. Don't take one students word for the whole class. I read your blog and I laugh WITH you all of the time. Stay amazing and stay funny - it's what gets many, many kids through math class! : )

  8. Thanks, y'all. I'm over it now ... THIS TIME..., and I guess it's the roller coaster of teaching.

    Funny Story from today: a student needed my signature on something, and as she was bringing it up to me, I said, "oh, you need my John Hancock." Oh my GOD! the laughter ... tee hee hee .... teacher said a male body part ... what the heck!?!?!?!

    I didn't think I had to explain myself and the reference, but apparently I did.

  9. It's amazing how much of an impact we make as teachers. Even these students we don't think we are reaching are taking in our actions. My favorite though is the 540 degrees! Slapped you so hard made you spin and fall in the opposite direction! :)