Our last trimester starts tomorrow. Since this is my first year at this school, and because there is no curriculum, it means that I get to create everything that will happen in all 5 of my classes from scratch. I’ve done it all year, so, no biggie right? Well, first semester I used the books, figuring that at the outset that would be fine and I could see how I liked it. Well, all the “themes” in the book were so random I genuinely had a hard time trying to fit this book to my kids needs and my normal teaching. Had a hard time generating interest, and I was bored too. So second trimester we scrap it all and do stuff that we want to do. We studied Cesar Chavez. This worked out really well.
So now, third trimester. I asked the kids what they wanted to study. Part of the struggle is that I teach all levels of language learners, from the newcomers to the advanced kids. So I cannot recycle much, and my advanced kids are my last classes of the day when my energy level is lowest. So far this year, I have done much better with my less english skills kids, who I knew I was going to teach all summer, anticipated them. My higher level kids, well, now is the time to meet the challenge with these kids. They are on permanent “We are interested and excited about nothing” mode, which is strange for middle schoolers.
To make matters more interesting, the news arrived awhile back that I am to bear a child. Pregnancy is effective for me anyway, at distracting me from school significantly.
I have 3 months left before summer (we get out early June). While normally as a teacher most of my energy goes into what cool stuff we can do in the classroom, I have to admit to some serious distraction, and not even a comfy established curriculum to lean on. I mean there is nothing.
(cue world’s smallest violin)
Wish me luck!