Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Why Yes, I Can Squeeze In Another Student...It's No Big Deal!

     Can you guess where the students go when they are: not on track to a 4 year college, not honor students, students that have a hard time in a lecture type class so they end up being behavior issue, kids with ADD and special education needs, those that can't take AP classes, students who are trying to get out of classes like english and math or what they consider "hard" classes, or those seniors that just need a class to fill their schedule?? Yep, they go to the Art Room!  

     To say that it's been an interesting first 2 days of school would not be doing it justice. I have been trying to enjoy all of the lil surprises and alterations to my classes (I really have!). 

You know what they say, never say you're going to do something unless you really want to be tested in that area. Well, I said that my motto for this school year was going to be, "It's No Big Deal." Yep, you guessed it, I have been tested in this. 

You see I'm a bit of a control freak, with a dash of OCD, a deep rooted need to organize, and still struggle with unaware changes. So I knew that going into the school year with my chosen motto was going to be a bit of a challenge for me. So when I saw that my class that can only seat 12 had 20, and that some of those students were well known "challenges" I said, "It's No BIG deal." 
But it was a bit of a stretch for me when I was told that they were going also be adding other classes to my schedule (this was also done without me being asked). SoI was told that I would have an Art 3 (Pottery) student in with my "Fun" Art 1 class in my 1st Period. I would have 25 in a classroom for 12 (But it's only for 3 weeks till I get my new room, which can seat 25 kids. Praise Jesus!!!!) for my 2nd Period Fine Arts class, and they were going to fill my 4th Period Art 1 with more students and maybe even through in an Art 3 (Pottery) student. But I am not the only one with craziness going on. All of us have been going through a lot of schedule changes, the poor Jr high just found out that their whole day was changing and they where going back to an 8 period day. So we all are pitching in and "Taking one for the team" as our principal like to tell us.

     But I do have to brag on my kids. Today while I was trying to figure out what to do with the extra kids in my class that had no place to sit, my class was sooooo good!!! I ended up having to get a table from the side of our maintenance shed and had kids that jumped in to help. Then as I cleaned up all of the mud and gunk off of the table, and had spiders and frogs jumping out of it, kids jumped in again and helped catch the critters (I killed the spiders).  So while I'm doing all of this there was half of the class that had not been there yesterday when we started on a project. This turned out to be a GREAT opportunity for my kids to peer teach! I told all of the students that had started the project to grab a partner that needed instructions and to teach them the start of the project. The kids were AWESOME and helped each other and I was so proud to hear kids explaining class procedures for checking out supplies and going over things that I hadn't got to yet since I was cleaning a muddy table and trying to find chairs for kids to sit at said table. 

So I then had my small moment and went to vent to my friend down the hall. She was so awesome and came in and helped me turn a computer table into seating for students and move my whole classroom around to squeeze a lot of kids into a very small space. Thanks Ang for all of your help!!!!! I am so fortunate to work with such great people! There are just so many changes taking place, with the lead up to our move to the new school, adding classes to our schedule, and what seems to be an influx of students that we have no idea of where they are coming from. But I'm proud to say that I am sticking to my motto!! 

     Also, tonight as I was thinking about my kids and the ones that seem to end up in my class I realized something about them Yes, they may be all of the things that I listed above, and they may not be the kids that always celebrate a lot of academic achievement in the form of being placed in honors or AP, but sometimes a class like mine is just what they need. I get the ADD kids, I am one. I understand those kids that struggle in math and english, I did and still do. I understand what a kid with dyslexia sees when they look at something, I see it too. I know what its like to be in a class and feel lost and behind and try to find something to keep me occupied, or feel like I'm about to burst because someone told me I have to go 90 min without talking. I know that I need to actual see it, have some explain it to me, and then actual do it before I get it. 

So yeah, this may not be the "perfect" class but it's ok...Like my mom always tells me "I live in my own world but it's ok they know me here." In my class it may be our own little crazy world, but it's ok we know each other there. This group of kids, well they are my mission field, my responsibility, my crazy lil world. I'm sure we will have our ups and downs (I will always win of course) but hey it wouldn't be teaching if we didn't. I'm not here to just teach. I'm hear to teach that group of kids that they can do something and be good at it. I'm going to try and teach them to have pride in what they produce, wither it be a poster, painting, or if its just producing a day without giving up. I'm sure both them and I will learn a lot more then art this semester, and I hope that we both walk away better because of it.
Making this into a poster for above my desk
So the best part is we get to do it all over again tomorrow. But I got this ;)

~Tell Next Time


Mama said...

Yea Sylvia mama so proud of you, white beans and pork loin for supper with fresh baked bread and sugar free cottage cheese strawberry dessert

Ceil said...

HI Sylvia! I am coming over from Blogs by Christian Women.

I love your little sayings! The one about ADD and OCD made me giggle out loud.

You sound like a very grounded teacher to me! "It's No Big Deal" is a big motto to live up to, but my money's on you!

So nice to meet you today! I think I'll be following you too. Come on over and visit me sometime!