No Excuse November

I don’t know about the rest of the teachers out there, but DANG…this year has been a rough one so far!

I, for one, have completely let the stress over take my life.

I stopped working out. I stopped eating healthy (Chickfila has been my GO TO). I have really just stopped doing everything that relieves the stress of work because I rather come home, pour myself a glass of wine, and watch Once Upon A Time and forget my troubles.

My excuse to do this nightly ritual? “School was stressful, so I just want to do nothing.” Seemed like a legit excuse to me…

Well, I decided NO MORE!

NO MORE FAST FOOD!

NO MORE SITTING AT HOME BEING A COUCH POTATO!

NO MORE STRESS TAKING OVER MY LIFE!

Starting today (November 1, 2014) I am getting my stress and life back on track to a healthier, fitter and happier me.

Men have “No Shave November” or “MOvember”, well….I am starting up the #NoExcuseNovember trend.

I challenge all of you, teachers or not, to find something to give up this November to help decrease stress and help create a better lifestyle habit for your future.

Don’t let the stress of your job take over your happiness and personal life….find a way to relieve that stress so you can enjoy the little things in life without the worries of your work.

So, help me start the trend! Let’s do this!

#NoExcuseNovember

You shall not pass!

Quarter one is done! 3 left till summer! This should be exciting…right?

Well, finished up grading my lovely kiddos’ projects and OH MY LAWDY! I have never seen such terrible, done the night before, I taped paper to a poster board projects in my life.

First off, if I EVER turned in a project like that my parents would have killed me! So, why these kids find hand written, paper folded and half taped on work acceptable baffles me.

Let me give you some insight. My kids have known about this project for five weeks…yes, FIVE ENTIRE WEEKS! It is worth 100 points and 20% of their grade for the quarter.

Still had kids turn nothing in. Zeros for you. Thanks for making my life easier. Means I drink much less wine while grading your fantastic understanding of how to write a paragraph summary.

After that frustration of grading (mostly) crap projects, I decided to go ahead and submit report card grades in the systems. Jesus_facepalm

36% of my ELA students have FAILED the first grading period.

I’m sorry, was I unaware that since you sit in class you deserve an “A”? Don’t make me giggle.

I am aware that working at a Title 1, turn around school is rough, but I did not realize that the kids just did not care this year to even try. Trying gets you a grade.

Being lazy and not doing anything gets you a big, fat 0%.

Secondly, how is it that us, as educators, get judged so harshly for how our students do, especially if you can look at grades and see some just refuse to do anything but sleep or turn in work? Seems like the education system needs to TLC and needs some people to look at it more closely.

Is it just me? Or are other teachers out there feeling my pain with this generation we are attempting to educate and make successful?

Being a teacher is a stressful, unfair, politically heavy job. Thank goodness we all do it for the kiddos…and the amazingly great paychecks we receive for our hard work and overtime 😉

 

 

openhousephobia

So, you can talk and direct 25 kids in a class, but talking to a handful of parents at open house makes you stutter, sweat and slightly die inside?

WELCOME TO MY LIFE!

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Dang, it is the worst! Those parents probably wonder how someone who stutters and says “um” every sentence can teach their children Language Arts.

I can hear it now, “Darling, your English teacher can’t seem to talk, is she like that in class?” (I doubt they are really saying that, but in my mind…it happens!)

This was my problem last week when having to do 7th and 8th grade open house!

Parents are intimidating and ask some strange questions that, sometimes when put on the spot, you answer incorrectly or can’t answer AT ALL! (embarrassing)

OR you have what I had the other night…awkward silence and my hesitation giggle came into play.

Making a fool out of myself…it really is a special skill I have.

LONGEST 8 MINUTE ROTATIONS IN MY LIFE!!!

I felt like a “Bad Luck Brian” meme : Made a nifty slide show with important information to use up time…7 minutes left, spoke too fast.

Is this just me…or are parents SCARY when you teach their kids!

I know this may sound ridiculous, but I hope I bring fear into the eyes of the teachers who teach my students one day.

Perhaps it is because I am a younger teacher is why this makes me cringe? Perhaps next year it will be less nerve racking…one can only hope.

What do I know for sure?

1. Longer slide show.

2. Talk slower.

3. Picture all the parents in their underwear to take away some of the anxiety 😉

 

Teacher Summers: Relaxing or nah?

So, most of you sit here thinking, ” Man, teachers are living the life! They get two months off for summer and are STILL PAID!”

Let me clear this up for you.

While some of us DO have that dream life, many of us still work over the summer. There are even some teachers (like me this past year) who are on 10 month pay and have no money coming in over summer.

Now…what do most teachers do over the summer you might ask?

Some of us work…but a majority of us go to trainings.

Yea, I said trainings. Who would have thought, teachers need to learn more about how to improve and teach your kids. Crazy right?

I, myself, have done four trainings this summer.

1. ESOL – Four days, 60 hour class: Taught me to find other strategies to connect and teach my English Language Learners.

2. Core Connections – Three days, 12 hour class: Helps me to know how to teach my kids easy ways to write essays and preplan for the upcoming tests they will have.

3.  Textbook Training – One day, 3 hour class: We are in a textbook adoption year…and we got AWESOME books! So, clearly, if I am teaching students from them I need to know how to use them.

4. Carol Jago Training – Three days, 18 hour class: To learn how to help students create and answer more text dependent questions.

So…while you think we all enjoy a summer like this…

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This is what we are really doing…

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“You don’t even go here!”

Oh hey!

Let me tell you a little about myself. My name is Jordan. I am a Middle School teacher in Florida.

Did you just cringe a little?

Before you think I am a bit crazy for dealing with the hormones and drama of today’s Middle School population, let me explain.

I have my BA and MA in journalism. That is right! I am not your normal teacher. When I went to find a job in the ever-so-lovely journalism field, I was unable to find work.

Obviously, my initial thought was “I know! I’ll become a teacher!”

WRONG!

My mom talked me into it. Florida gave me a temporary certification and my awesome school’s principal hired me.

“You will teach 6th and 8th grade Language Arts”, they said. So, I thought to myself…”How hard could it be? They are just kids.”

I laugh at the thought of my naive self now. Easy was not even a word I could use to describe my first year as a teacher, especially at the Middle School level.

So, this blog will be my experiences and stories of working as a Middle School teacher. I may even throw in some teaching tips for lessons, fashion, and classroom decor.

I love my job and I certainly have my quirky moments. (You will soon find this out)

Enjoy the blog and enjoy the humor of my unteacherly teacher moments 😉