Day Three. I’m still alive. Today was intense, to say the least. I started my morning finishing my task of reading my students’ Cumulative Reports, which my CT asked me to do so that I would not only get to know my kids’ backgrounds a little better, but also as a means to identify and understand my kids with and special coding, or any accommodations. I loved the exercise, and have found myself asking other teachers and support staff for the files that I’m missing, because I’m so eager to learn whatever I can. Once I finished that, I moved on to my next task: creating a Science bulletin board for the students’ tree cookies. My arm threatened to fall off from stencil cutting all my letters, leaves, and stapling, but my finished product was pretty great. It feels good to be in the classroom, learning from my CT, but also from my students, and being able to do things that showcase their work and abilities.
You can call me Centimeter. Lady Centimeter. That is my nickname, so kindly given by one of the other teachers in the school upon trying to figure out what the CM of my name meant. My kids love it. I was so anxious today, trying to get prepared for my lesson that I had to teach after morning recess. I had my lesson plan in hand, ready to go, I even had student volunteers hand out the lesson booklet. My objective: teach my students about the parts of a leaf, their shapes, arrangements, etc. I was wound up so tightly, and was so nervous, that my lesson plan virtually went out the window. My timing was fine but things seemed rushed, I wasn’t as engaging as I thought I could have been, and certain things we learned in our lessons at school didn’t feel like they were translating into my lesson. However, even though I though all those things about my lesson, my CT gave me really great feedback when we debriefed after my lesson. While she did have some constructive criticism, our chat greatly helped me build my confidence back up, and to believe that my lesson was successful. Amazingly, my kids got it. There were lots of questions, some concerns and blank stares, but I did my best to answer all of their questions, and put up an example on the board. I now sit with my marking at home, proud of my kids for being so accepting of my lesson, and really trying hard to do their best. The rest of the day went without incident, until about ten or fifteen minutes after the final bell rang.
I was packing my things to get ready to go, my CT was getting ready to get her marking done, and all of a sudden, the PA buzzes on, announcing a lockdown. We scrambled to secure the two of us into the room, and then stared at each other wondering what was possibly wrong. She tells me in a whisper that there has never been a lockdown after school hours before, and explains the procedure to me. We both tiptoe to our desks to get our marking, and quietly work until the PA buzzes back on to say the lockdown was external, asking any residual staff and students to come to the main office. I was tense, worried about what could be happening, and truly grateful the majority of the students were gone for the day. I was even reticent to blog about the occurrence, but my CT encouraged me to, as it would be a good point of reference for myself, and for my cohort. To calm down a rambunctious room of elementary school children, regardless of the grade they are in, can be difficult enough – but to try calming them down in the midst of a lockdown? I can’t even imagine.
Today was an interesting, stressful, anxiety-ridden, and rewarding day. I’m looking forward to the next six weeks.