Leigha and the Triplets

Monday, September 01, 2008

Teachers Have it Easy!

I always laugh when people tell me that teachers have it easy. We have 3 months off a year and have shorter work days than most people. I guess they don't see teachers walk out of the building carrying large bags of papers to grade, lessons to prepare, or activities to prepare. When we were on a year-round schedule, you always had things to do while on break. There were tons of things to catch up on in terms of grading, copying, etc. Parent helpers are just not around like they used to be.

Last year we switched to a traditional nine-month schedule and this was the first summer I had off (2.5 months). It was hard getting through the straight nine months though, considering we had worked all summer. It paid off this summer. This was the first time where I made a clean break! I had nothing looming over my head, no papers to be graded or lessons to be written. IT WAS WONDERFUL!

Unfortunately, it also meant that we had to take down everything in our classrooms so they could clean them. When I first started teaching, I measured everything with yardsticks. I went through about 1,000 staples trying to get this massive wall up. I couldn't handle it if it wasn't straight. It bothers me to walk through the halls and see a crooked board. Just one of my many pet peeves. That wall stayed up for 6 years! The only thing I ever had to replace was the bottom border. I was proud of that wall, but I was also very sick of looking at it. We were told we could leave the stuff up if it was on a material wall (separating one classroom into two). I decided to go ahead and take it down anyway. I was ready for some change!

Fast forward 2 months. I really regretted my decision to gut my entire room of all of the posters. That meant that I had to hang everything back up again and figure out a new layout for my one wall. Thankfully, over the years, I learned not to be as quite OCD as I had been. I no longer use yardsticks to make sure my boards are even, now I just yell for someone else to come check it out!

I ended up working in my room, preparing for the new year, for two weeks prior to our official start back date. There is NO way you can prepare for the year in the 2.5 hours they provide for us after our annual meetings. Considering the tiny rooms that we have (half of what I should have!), I am pretty pleased with my room this year. I have all of my reading/language on one side, my sign language in the front, and my math on the other side. I swear this year I am going to stay organized. I will never be able to fully declutter, given the size of our room, but I will keep things tidy! I SWEAR!

Please excuse the sloppy handwriting on the board, it's so hard to go back to printing for the beginning of third grade. Everything is in cursive by the end!


Anonymous said...

Looks great! But... where are the windows??? (One of my pet peeves is windowless schools :-)).
I enjoy your blog... don't think I've commented before.
-Anita in California

Stacey said...

Your room looks great. I always love the beginning of a new year. There are so many possibilities. Have a great year!