Friday, February 15, 2013

Lessons I learned this week.

     School isn't just for the kids you know. It is finally Friday, so I thought I would reflect on a few of the things that I learned this week.
1. It is not a good idea to watch films that you have not previewed. We got stuck watching a film to wrap up a lesson about religion in the Middle East because I borrowed the lesson from someone else. It was the most boring film ever. I mean the .....whole  I just wanted to shout "Spit it out already!"  The kids were not impressed either. It could have been worse. Once when I was subbing the teacher left a video and a note that instructed me to stand next to the TV and censor it with a piece of cardboard when anything obscene came on.  Seriously.
2. Some kids can be reformed. One of my students used to skip class every time I let her go to the bathroom. I didn't let her go anywhere for three weeks and I called her mom when she skipped after school tutoring that she was supposed to attend. Today she asked to go to the bathroom. She really did look like she was about to have an accident, so I let her go and she actually came back this time.
3. Listening to gossip is lame. I know, the short term thrill of getting the latest dirt is entertaining, but in the end I find myself losing more and more respect for my peers and supervisors.
4. The best lessons are the ones you take time to develop yourself. I came up with a mapping activity that I used last week. It took me three days to get the whole thing together because I had to find a bunch of maps, print and laminate them. It went really well and this week four other Geography teachers have borrowed it. They all gave me positive feedback. I wish I had time to develop lessons like that all of the time. A teacher workday once a grading period would be nice.
5. Don't give a test on Valentine's Day because the kids will be too hyped up on sugar to focus on the task at hand. This is year five, so you would think that I would have figured that one out by now. Speaking of Valentine's day, I hope that you had a nice one.

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