…but as it turns out, it’s not. When my co-teacher left at the end of last school year and I found out I would be in the classroom alone – I was super excited! The idea of having half the amount of kids and not having to always okay my ideas with someone else (even though I was head teacher and didn’t have to – I liked to have my co-teacher involved and get agreement on ideas) gave me the impression that this year was going to be much easier then years past! I envisioned being able to give each child all the attention each needed so that they could all succeed to be the best learners possible. I thought that we could all be much more productive in class because there would be less kids. I had visions of great projects and learning opportunities!
But, that’s not the reality I’ve been living this school year. Instead, it feels like the exact opposite and I come home feeling exhausted and, more often then not, having a headache. This is why I’ve been absent from my blog so much this year. I work for a private, non-profit school so we don’t have any services available to our children. However, I have 3 children who could use speech therapy and 2 others who I feel might have some sort of special need (but I don’t know what…something’s just “off” with each of them). Also, I have about 4 children who have behavior problems (2 of those being aggressive towards others). And this class is really young. I only have 14 kids. I get so discouraged some days. Then there are other days that run so smoothly I begin to wonder if it’s not something I do to cause the “bad” days.
This class is young. Needy. Immature. Whatever you want to call it. There have been a lot of days where I feel like I’m failing them because I don’t always have the time or ability to give them what they need. I’m doing the best I can – this is such a big adjustment not having another adult to help me. I had thought I was doing well, and they were starting to “get it” – but then I did mid-year evaluations. So many of them don’t know so many of the concepts we’ve been working on for months! So once again, I think I must be doing something wrong. But then I think, maybe they just aren’t ready? I dunno.
Today I was reading through some of my favorite blogs to catch up and I read this post on Elbows, knees, dreams and I totally thought for a minute she must have a hidden cam in my class because I can totally relate to everything she wrote here! They also don’t listen when I’m reading (or talking) to them. I can read something like, “The little girl ran away from the house to get away from the witch.” And then I might ask, “So, why did the girl run away?” And I get answers like “She ran fast!”, “She likes to run!”, “Because she’s having fun!” and others along those lines.
Anyway, I don’t mean to complain. I do love my job. And these kids aren’t terrible or horrible. They can be sweet, cute, funny, inquisitive, innovative, helpful, caring, and silly. We laugh and have fun together. We ponder together. We investigate together. And we’re growing together. Everyday.