I have mixed feeling about this first week. Here are the positives and the negatives:
Positive #1: I feel well liked and supported in my department (which I was worried wouldn’t be the case because of my tendency to go overboard). It’s nice to be able to eat with and get to know the other math teachers. Not sure how it’s going to turn out, but right now, they are letting me plan a whole PBI unit on constructions for all the sections of geometry (since our school now requires one “PBL” each quarter).
Positive #2: My trigonometry kids don’t hate me!! I was worried that they would be upset about me taking over for Mr. Klankey (who they love and respect). They laughed at my jokes, ask questions, and do what I ask them to. I really like all the kids in my classes.
Negative #1: I feel like my Geometry/ESL class is not understanding the material. They have a very superficial understanding of the definitions and are often confused and won’t say anything. They have potential to be such a lively class, but I feel like they’re being smothered and under-challenged. I have not taken over this class yet (I will 9/3), so I don’t know if I will be able to do any better, but I hope this doesn’t set the tone for the rest of the semester.
Negative #2 I have taught 3 days in Trig/Calc and only got through 1 section (not good). I’m having trouble finding a balance between babying them and explaining everything in great detail vs running through examples. This is a college course so the schedule is very strict. At the same time, lots of the kids work or don’t have time to do homework after school- so we don’t assign any (which is nice) and give them quizzes instead, but they aren’t doing well on them. I know sometimes we need to let them fail (as in, watch them not study and then do poorly on the tests) to help them learn, but I want them to succeed so badly. I’m just having trouble finding a balance. Luckily Mr. Klankey is great and is helping me through it all.