Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Best of Intentions

I am able to predict a day off school far more accurately than Nostradamus and all that end-of-the-world crap. Most often it is a snow day, but given the unpredictable freakishness of Virginia weather, that day off may not just be for snow, but for heavy rains or high winds... or something even less disruptive than that.

This is my method- Create a classroom calendar for a significant amount of time, at least a couple of weeks, but maybe even a month. Craft it perfectly, with enough time to cover all your course objectives in an engaging fashion with enriching methods. Accent it with detailed lesson plans, which flow and connect to fit the perfect puzzle frame of that indicated time.

Then... something's going to happen to screw it all up!

The teen girls around here love to post pics of themselves in bikinis in the snow on Facebook. Why? I don't know. So, Cameron threw on a pair of swimming trunks to pose in the snow as a mockery of the whole teen fad.

We did have snow last weekend. Thankfully, it began and ended on Saturday. It made for a pretty day and no messy roads to drive afterwards. I had mentioned earlier that one of the silly little reasons I wanted to keep a blog was to look back over what happened with weather the year before. Well, is there such a thing as a Weather Blog- a Wog? Because it may have taken its own little corner of the Internet to keep up with all the crazy Virginia weather. True to this year's trend, it was 60 degrees the day before, then the biggest snowflakes I have ever seen fluttered from the sky the very next day. Jason said looking out the window was like watching a snow globe.

As I said though, the snow was on Saturday, and not very disruptive to the school schedule. I can't say the same for the rest of the week. I had already planned to take off Monday and just knew Karma was going to chomp me in the backside for taking a "Sick Day" when I wasn't actually "Sick." (Doctor's appointments and such all fall under "Sick Days" with our policies.)


I got "the call" before first block was even over Tuesday that I had to go pick up Benjamin from daycare. I doctored & cuddled him up, feeling comfortable enough sending him back to school on Wednesday. When I picked him up that afternoon though, I learned that he had slept away most of the day. So, I stayed home of Thursday and took him to the doc to find out that he had a nasty nose and ear infection. Very shortly after a couple of doses of antibiotics though, he was roaring through the house again looking for new adventures.

Among MY "new adventures" was trying to get that antibiotic into this kid. I found the fusses and battles to be far easier to overcome with a little bribery- of the Ant Smasher kind.

 A free app that I downloaded to my phone this week, those pesky little ants (and ornery little bees) have been quite the bribe motivator to get Benjamin to do a few things, especially take his meds... and Nope, I'm not ashamed of that in the very least!
Well, before being out the unexpected three days last week (I am not even sure I have been out three days in one week other than maternity leave!), I had mapped out instructional activities to span over the next two weeks. As of late, I have begun detailing my lesson plans down to the exact time from for each activity (8:15 - 8:20 Grammar Warm-Up, 8:20 - 8:40 SSR Reading & log, etc.) I know, I knowww.... another product of my thwarted sense of OCD, but the structure brings calmness to the chaos that can be my day. And, I swear I do not have a mental breakdown when the schedule doesn't follow the minute-by-minute scenario... usually.
I had mapped out the two weeks specifically because I have "adopted" a new class first block. Unfortunately a co-worker's husband has had a very unexpected and ill year, and we are all pitching in to help the situation because "the show must go on," and so must the school year. So I am covering another teacher's first block so she can cover another teacher's first block so he can cover the class of the teacher that's been home caring for her husband. It's an intricately planned scenario in hopes of putting the most qualified teachers in the place they are needed most during this interlude.
But most days? It feels like I am one body and mind trying to cover two classes. So, that hole I always feel from missing time from class feels a little deeper this week. And, ohhh, it's one of those weeks- with a newly scheduled Family Reading night & fundraiser this Thursday, Blood Drive this Friday, Get-together with Convention-goers this weekend to finish competition pieces & shopping for a new suit for Cameron, Relay Team Captains & Committee meeting Monday night & School Team meeting Wednesday morning, Club elections next week, field trip next Tuesday, Parent Conferences next Wednesday, and leaving for Key Club District Convention next Friday.
It's definitely one of those times in life when I have to simply... pause. Remember the job I get "paid" for. Remember my priorities- Education. Family. Not in that order, most days. Remember the reasons why I choose to give of my time, my self, in this way. Remember that it is a busy season, the time will pass, and when things quiet back down (for a very short time) I will feel the reward of what temporarily feels like stress and chaos. And too much. Way too much.
Oh yeah, and add new lesson plans and class calendars to that list.

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