Leaving Turner High School

I didn’t realize how hard it was going to be to leave Turner. I have gotten so comfortable there and made so many relationships. I am going to miss my mentor teachers so much. Where else am I going to find people to listen to me all the time? (just kidding) Their example, patience, and kindness made my experience so great. But then there are my kids…. In Spanish we had a mini party with chips, salsa, and brownies and talked about Texas culture- they were their usual selves- I wish I had gotten more time to build relationships with them. They really are great kids- I would love to come back and see how much they’ve changed as seniors. My Geometry kids gave me a card that everyone signed, and it was so sweet! They were my babies, and I really do think I made some progress with a few of them. I hope they keep their spirit and never stop asking questions. Then there is my trig class… I knew going into the last day it’d be a miracle if I didn’t cry. This 16 person class- 13 girls, 3 guys- has truly touched my heart. Every single one of them was kind, patient, caring, and bright. I never want to forget them (so I printed off all their pictures- for all my classes in fact). But, on the last day, I was doing alright until they made me stand at the front of the room and gave me a binder full of letters they had written saying how much they were going to miss me and what I had taught them and reminding me of inside jokes we had. It was the perfect gift. I am going to make it a point to go to their graduation in May. I am so proud of them.

I never thought I’d get so attached to my kids or that they’d like me so much because I was never that attached to my teachers in high school. And I’d always hate it when teachers would say it’s all about the kids- building relationships etc- because I thought it was also about the math. I didn’t want to be one of those mushy teachers….. but I totally am. I really do love my kids- all of them. I’m going to miss them so much.

Other reflections/ things I learned this week:
– Mr. Colwell- the principal told me in our farewell conversation: don’t become paralyzed by over-analyzing (paralysis by analysis)
– Mrs. McFarland reminded me that it is good to give kids some time to work in class and I need to make sure I leave time for kids to ask questions
– I made this whole big packet for my Spanish kids for the week that we did most of in class, but the rest was for completion- this was to help build up their grades up. Well, they did most of the worksheets, but didn’t do the vocab practice worth 20% of the packet (which they knew was the most important part). Then they failed their vocab quiz…. Shocking. It’s really hard to get through material when the kids won’t do anything you don’t give them time to do in class and they won’t do everything you ask them to do in class. I’ll just have to keep working on finding engaging ways to teach and building relationships. I’m thankful to have had this class, because they really did teach me so much.
– It is super crucial to get formative assessment multiple times before a test. Mr. K gave the kids a chapter test and they all failed it (except for one student who got 80%). Both he and I thought they understood the material fairly well based on what they had done in class. It was helpful to see that he allowed them to do corrections because generally he doesn’t.
– Last reflection is that I should have started earlier on my KPTP! What was I thinking? Panic setting in….

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