I have a busy week ahead of me, I reckon. For a couple of reasons. First, there are a few different types of assessments I have floating around that are all coming due around this time (hooray for mid-marking period). So I’ve gotta get all of that nonsense in. People are starting to travel for the holidays…”Mr. Thomas, I won’t be here ______” “Mr. Thomas, I won’t be here between _____ and ______”… well deal with it. You’re on your phone constantly anyway, just check my website. No, I can’t say that. But my standard line is “I don’t like to work too far ahead because I want to move at the pace of the class, not make a cookie cutter schedule and move whether or not the students are ready.” Which is a load of garbage…I really don’t like to work too far ahead because it’s a lot of work to move ahead, and I am treading water so as it is to plan everything to try to get the kids actually involved in the class…thank you Kate for the flyswatter game, Friday is Fly-day. I don’t think my algebra 1 students are quite ready for conic sections, but I’ll make it work. On the fly. Ha. Unless you’re an administrator and potential employer of mine once this contract runs out. Then, it is solely because it benefits the kids.
Secondly, as I alluded to a few lines ago (lines of text, not lines of the form Ax + By = C), it’s mid-marking period this week. Which means a couple of things — the kids will be super-attentive to their grades. Which means I’ll have to say “I update things online. If you’re missing anything, it’s there” more often over the next week. It also means I have to print out a LOT of mid-quarter reports to send home to parents. Not because a lot of kids are failing (which I have to send home) but because some parents, at the beginning of the year, requested that they get sent home. Look online, folks. It’s probably more up-to-date than the one you’ll get in the mail (especially with the USPS stopping overnight delivery on first-class mail), and it’s a lot cheaper for the public school that is already out of money because who knows who in Harrisburg is spending who knows how much on who knows what, and not spending it on who knows what else.
But the good news? The algebra 1 classes are soon coming up on the sections where I started in Doha. I’ll have to adapt somewhat (a shirt costing QR65 may not mean too much to Berks Countians. But maybe it will culture them a bit?) but at least the foundation is there.
…and the bad news. Thursday is mid-marking period. So I’m 1.5 quarters in. Out of a 3-quarter contract. It doesn’t take an algebra student to tell you that’s half. And thank goodness, because it could take them a while to work with all those fractions…
I think that’s the main reason it will seem busy. Not only am I doing my best to stay a useful teacher for my current students, but I have to start looking for a paying gig starting March 22. Any takers?