Monday, June 29, 2015

First Week of Teaching!

This has been the most difficult and most rewarding week.  Students arrived bright and early on Monday.  Seventh graders looked terrified and confused, eighth graders and BLPs (ninth graders in the Breakthrough Leaders Program) were very much okay with our wild and crazy selves while we were doing bus greeting and doing the bus game.

Maybe I should take you through an average day at Breakthrough:
  • All teachers and Program Interns arrive by 7:10 (lots of us show up at 6:30, including me.  So my morning begins at 5:00 every day) and we do announcements, play a game until the buses start arriving, assign Yo-Time activities, and other things to prepare for the day.
  • As the buses start to pull up, we all go to greet the students coming off the bus.  Afterwards, we go in the gym and we play a game until it's time to go to breakfast.
  • Breakfast, we sit with the kids and get them talking and excited for the day.
  • First classes start.  Half of the week, I teach a class during this time and the other half I have a prep period.
  • Second class starts (and a snack time is included).  Tuesdays and Thursdays I have a class during this time.
  • Third class starts (see first class).
  • All School Meeting (or ASM)!  Everyone crowds into the recital hall and all of the teachers (or their twins, any way) do improv based on the summer's theme, which is time travel.  My "twin" is Anne Frank.  The one time I performed last week, I was stuck in a time with dinosaurs.
  • It's time for lunch!  Same deal as with breakfast.  All of the teachers disperse and we sit and talk with the students.
  • College time!  This is the advisory period.  Kids fill out the Word of the Day and we talk about actual college sometimes.  This past week, we were busy preparing for College Bowl, so we were working on a cheer, making a poster, and making sure my college, Silver College, had grey shirts to wear for Friday.
  • Elective time.  I'm co-teaching a video production course this summer.  It's really fun-- the kids are catching on and seem to be enjoying what they're doing, even if they're just quick handshake videos.  They're really putting a lot of thought into their videos.
  • After elective comes Yo-Time, which is structured recess.  Teachers don't teach during this time, but hang out with the kids.  It's not my time, it's YO-time!
  • After Yo-Time, the kids go to their lockers, grab their bags, and we head out to the buses!  Some buses come later than others, so while we wait, we play games with the kids.  After everyone is sent home, we all breathe a sigh of happiness-relief-exhaustion and we head inside where we have meetings until 4:30.  After 4:30, we have the option to stay until 6:00 at the latest as we prepare for classes the next day or further in the future or we can go home.
Maybe you feel my exhaustion.  Teaching at Breakthrough is an incredible amount of work, but it still feels worth it.  The kids are great, the other teachers and staff are so nice.  I'm really enjoying my time working here.  

This picture is of all the kids and teachers at our site this summer.  My college kids are in grey, but all of my students are in grey, white, and brown.

This week has been challenging.  I definitely broke down once during the week when I got nothing but blank stares in my class.  I think I've discovered how to make that class work.  This past week has been a steep learning curve.  You learn about the demeanor of your class and you get used to getting up in front of the class and teaching on a regular basis.

This past week has been emotional and rewarding.  I can't wait for the rest of the summer!  I love my job.  Working at Breakthrough was kind of a way to test whether this is something that I want to do with the rest of my life.  It's early, but I can say that this job makes me happy and I see myself doing this for a really long time.  I can't wait.

Thanks for Reading!


No comments:

Post a Comment

I love your comments! Comment away!