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Mshope Mshope is offline
 
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 2,085
Senior Member

Mshope
 
Mshope's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 2,085
Senior Member
Dubby, are you serious?!?
Old 06-26-2017, 11:24 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #7

Welcome! I usually teach mostly 7th and 8th LA and 7th grade ss, as well as some remedial reading on and off. This is my 12 year. I love middle school. However, it can be a roller coaster. I still can find things overwhelming myself. In English, we can NEVER do all we need to do. It seems like each year, our kids are harder to motivate and struggle to write a coherent sentence more.

I've probably read every classroom management out there. I've always found something useful in each of them. The first year is rough, but I do remember having a really strong bond with my "first" year students. I hope you find a helpful teacher in English who can act as an informal mentor. I remember one teacher helped me a great deal with teaching grammar and especially writing essays. Even better, if they share their handouts and materials. Another teacher helped me to get the kids to listen to me.

Back to Dubby's advice, I love it. But #7 will not work for me or any other English teacher in my building. Even after all of these years I still bring home work. At my school, we get 50 minutes planning a day. Yep, they fill it with meetings and trainings, plus, we have to cover for absent teachers due to a sub shortage. I am forced to use a scripted curriculum where I am teaching the entire class period. I have no time to grade or plan. (I used to be able to grade as kids were reading. Now it's all done together.) I am lucky if I don't have to come in early AND stay late to get my copies done. Oh, we aren't allowed to use textbooks SO everything has to be copied.

We assign maybe 3 or 4 major essays a year (yep, we all have to do the same thing.) I know that I will be bringing home 120 essays. They will take me about four hours to grade on a weekend. This is using a rubric! I try to conference with every student and will edit their rough rough, so at this point I already read their essays. I try to limit my comments. I could do a little here, do a little here, but I prefer to do them all at once. Also, I make sure I check that I have everyone's or I get no names, kids who did them but didn't turn them in (la la land), and the kids who didn't do them. I will tell the kids who didn't do them to email them to me over the weekend. I then have to get all of those grades into our computer grade system.

We do a little peer editing, but this is pretty much the blind leading the blind as the bar for writing in my district is pretty low. Oh, did I mention we have no computers, so I am reading handwritten essays unless they typed it at home?

Anyway, I did work myself practically to death especially my first few years. In English, or any "tested" subject in my district, we were observed a lot until we were tenured. So my first year I had about ten observations, eight formal!!! Now these were when they would could pop in unannounced, three were planned. I knocked every observation out of the park. I have my objectives on the board, a warm-up, and all the other requirements of that time. Now, there are a new set of "look fors." Find out what they are looking for by asking around to teachers who have been recently observed. Although I have always been known as a "great" teachers, I really have devoted my life to it. I love to work on school things. I actually do work on school work during the summer, when I want to. It is my passion, but for those who have families and young children, I don't know how they do it. I have come in about an hour early in the morning for over a decade. That is my time to set up and get my agenda straight for the day. I do occasionally stay late, but often I get disturbed and don't get that much done.

I pretty much tried to stay out of the principal's way. If I was having trouble with a student or issue, I'd go to my co-workers first. As a new person, I also chaperoned dances and attended events and staff parties. I only vented to other new teachers. I think you are off to a great start!
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