Saturday, September 8, 2012

New School vs Old


1. My beautiful, organized classrooms.
If you've been paying attention to my postings at all, you know that I have an obsession with an organized classroom. I am not anywhere near that ideal in my new school yet. The delay in getting into my room has really hurt that endeavor. When I did get in, my husband (my sainted helper) and I spent the precious few hours shoving all of the STUFF that was out on the counters, on the shelves, on the tables and desks, into the cabinets and filing cabinet drawers so that the room at least had a tidy appearance. That, setting up the tables, and setting out the materials I needed for the first day took up most of the allotted time I had. So the room appears neat and I have my bare necessities, but I need more!

2. (Going along with the above) Access to my classroom.
At my last school I could get into my classroom pretty much 24/7 (excluding the hours between midnight and 5am). This obviously made cleaning/organizing/etc much easier. It's a BIG change to have so little access.

3. My friends.
My wonderful work friends, and our "lunch bunch." People whose classrooms I could drop into; people who would appreciate my stories; people whose stories I appreciated. Having people to sit and joke with during staff meetings. Going to Subway for lunch on Fridays. The endless series of pranks and inside jokes. That'll happen eventually here, but it takes time.

4. My kids.
Of course I miss my kids. Especially since I get so many repeaters - kids who take more than one of my classes. It's odd not having anyone I know or who knows me in my classes.

5. The kids knowing me.
The old school was fairly small, so even the kids I didn't have in class knew who I was, and I could chat with pretty much anyone in the hallway. Here, if I talk to someone that's not in one of my classes, they kind of just give me weird looks and back away slowly, looking for an escape.


1. When I log in to the student info system, I do NOT have an administrator's view.
At my old school I had several responsibilities on top of teaching, including assisting with scheduling. Hence, when I logged in instead of seeing only my classes, I saw EVERYTHING. I love that I am "just" a teacher again.

2. No 25 minute before school hall duty.
At the old school, every four weeks I had a week of hall duty that commenced 25 minutes before the first bell. Not so here.

3. No detention duty.
At the old school, each teacher had to monitor a certain number of after school detentions per year. Not so here.

4. Not being responsible for a school-wide curriculum.
I was in charge of writing curriculum for a school-wide advisory period; no more! That frees up literally hours and hours of my weekends, yippee!

As great a joy as coaching can be, it's an enormous commitment of both time and energy. Also, an enormous commitment to patience with both players and parents, on top of the patience required for teaching - one can only have so much patience before parts of your brain begin to pop! But seriously, it's amazing that I get to focus solely on my teaching.


1. Reloading the copy machine.
So far this year, I am still the first to use the copy machine due to my early arrival. And, it is always devoid of paper, so once again I am the early morning paper reloader.

2. Rule follower.
The first couple weeks of school the kids looked at me like I was stupid and/or ridiculously uncool for enforcing universal school rules (like having to have your planner to get a pass, no passes first or last ten minutes of class, no food in the classroom) when the "smarter" and "cooler" teachers didn't - just like at my old school. But they're now starting to come around and for the most part have stopped trying to get around the rules with me. Be consistent, most will usually get it. Eventually.

3. Forgetting my lunch.
It's ridiculous how often I forget my lunch. But since I bring real food, I can't very well set it out with my purse and briefcase the night before. At the old school I could run home or to Casey's (mmm, Casey's fountain pop........ says the nutrition teacher...); not so here. At least I've smartened up enough to keep a box of granola bars handy for such emergencies.

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