Friday, October 3, 2008

Sick Day

Well, I'm home sick today with vaguely flu-like symptoms. All yesterday I was feeling nauseous--I even threatened to throw up on my kids if they didn't behave. Too much? Probably. But it made them laugh (little did they know I was serious). Anyway, as soon as school ended, I felt like, in the words of Miranda Priestly, "an incubus of viral plague." So I figured out the substitute system, called in a sick day, and am now at home recuperating.

I felt really bad calling in sick. It just really makes me realize how high the stakes are in this job. OK, I'm working a nine-to-five and I get sick; what's the worst that could happen? I miss a meeting and someone fills me in about it the next day. With teaching, if I call in sick, my kids basically miss a day of instruction, because there's only so much a sub can do. Thankfully Friday is test day, so a good chunk of the day is pretty easy for the sub to implement, but I had such bigger things to do with the kids today which just won't get done. Plus, if my kids are monsters to the sub (a definite possibility), it reflects very badly on me. AND it's picture day, so I guess I'm out of the yearbook. Sad panda. Oh well. It had to be done.

So sick days aside, how's it going? Well... it has its ups and downs, like anything. Sometimes I feel like it's a world full of downs, but then the kids will do something that just cracks me up, and anytime they hug me, my anger just completely dissipates. Damn manipulative children...

I don't really know what to say. My weeks are pretty much identical--the nature of this reading program is that we do the same thing every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, etc., just with a different story each week. We're about to wrap up our "Heritage" theme and move on to "Energy at Work." I can't decide if that's going to be better or worse. It's really amazing, though, how little my kids know about the world. I've had so many comments like, "So is Asia next to North Carolina?" and "They wanted to leave Alaska and go to America." They don't know the difference between a country, a city, a state, a region. They think that African is a language and that Chinese and Japanese people are the same. They understand racism and get really fired up over the civil rights movement, but then don't get why I'm upset at them for saying that all Chinese people talk like "Ching chong ding dong." It's just kind of mind-boggling, and I can't figure out how much of this ignorance is just because they're in fifth grade and how much is brought on by the complete failure of their schooling up to now. Meanwhile, I have very little time to actually correct these misapprehensions, as all our waking minutes are supposed to be used prepping them for the End of Grade tests (EOGs), something I feel I am not doing a very good job at so far...

The good news (?) is that I think we're all pretty much in the same boat. I mean all the TFA people. Sure, some people are doing better and some are definitely doing worse, but overall, we're united in our seeming incompetence. But I think it's getting better, day by day. So, we'll see.

As usual, I'm sure there's more to say and more you want to know about, but I'm at a loss for words. My bed is calling me, so there I shall return.

Hope all is well with all of you...

1 comment:

Becca said...

Sorry you don't feel good Anna. But after havingread all of your posts now- I can tell you're doing a fantastic job. I'm really proud of you, and I'm sure your kids will be ready for the EOGs. And can they blame you for trying to fit a little more about social studies in? I mean, my God, they basically hired a social studies enthusiast. Sounds like it's honestly going well- now just get better! Good thoughts being sent your way. :)