Updates from last week: the poop sock digestive system model was a huge hit! My students either loved it or were super grossed out by it but they all seemed to really absorb (haha, get it?) the material because the lesson as so unique. Also, I’ve hit a milestone and got my first student to legitimately throw up from one of my lessons, so I’m marking that as a huge point in the win column. My first week went well, I guess you could say, and each day I teach I get more comfortable with the discipline policies. I’m still not perfect but I’m improving. The first week also started off with my first teacher snow day; and, I have to say, the rumors are true, snow days as a teacher are way better than as a student.
And now, onto my new thoughts; I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about how I’m going to maintain my sanity through another couple years of madness as I settle into my teaching career and realize I probably need to start setting goals for now and for the future. And, yes I am taking Julian’s blog idea here. #HatersGonHate. So without further ado, here they are.
First short term,
- Stop watching Netflix in bed. This is a trap I get myself caught into on an almost nightly basis. I bring my computer to my room, get in bed, and watch some wild prison or drug lord documentary (weird choices, I know). This is not a terrible thing because I usually only do this when I’m going to bed early. However, this documentary usually runs about an hour to an hour and a half long and once it ends most normal people would shut their computer and go to sleep. That’s (obviously) not what I do; see, I have this pre-bed routine that I like to run through that includes Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Buzzfeed, CNN, and at least a dozen ThoughtCatalog articles. Each month this routine seems to get longer, and I’m going to attribute that for the most part to the number of ThoughtCatalog articles I read increasing each time I go on, by now my pre-bed ritual is about half an hour to 45 minutes long. That takes an hour-long documentary to a two-hour ordeal by the time I turn my lights off. That’s too much, and especially with how busy I am during the day it’s something that needs to stop, or (at the very least) be cut down.
- Start eating real dinners. I’m just going to come out and admit that last night I ate brownies and pretzels with a side of ginger ale for dinner. Gross. And, even worse is I did actually have the time to cook something and the food to cook something with actual nutrition in it. I currently feel like I’m getting sick and I’m going to go out on a limb and say its because I haven’t been eating great so I haven’t been getting enough of all the good stuff to keep me healthy… Or I guess it could be that my CT has the flu. Either, or.
- Work out when time allows. Jill and I did really well this past summer with going to the gym before class and I really started to notice a difference in my energy levels and my strength from doing it; I was actually really making progress towards getting back into good shape. However, as I’m sure we can all relate to, as soon as school, STARS, and class started we stopped (understandably). Now that I’m only in two classes (instead of five) and have kind of gotten the hang of writing lesson plans I have slightly more time on my hands. This extra time has been, for the most part, spent in a horizontal position on Jill’s couch or mine. Now, I’m not saying that hanging out and doing nothing is a bad thing, because it is probably one of my favorite things but between that and my brownie dinners I’m losing any fitness that I once had. This time last year I was working on Wall St. and commuting two hours each way to work; that meant my 9-hour workday was really a 13 to 13.5-hour day door-to-door. Now that really left me no time to work out so I bought a yoga mat and started doing some serious Pilates to make up for not going to the gym. I still have that mat in my apartment and I have a ton of index cards with body weight workouts written down that I used then and over the summer with Jill. My plan is, on the days that I don’t have class, to get one of those workouts done before I go to bed. Between that and eating real dinners I should make some progress back to the summer.
Now for longer-term goals,
- Start making classroom management and organization plans. I’ve gotten to see a few styles of running a classroom at this point and have several different options to use or build off of for next year. I need to start making some general plans that can translate to whatever and wherever my classroom may be next year. I know that things may be slightly different depending if I’m in middle school or high school, especially because chemistry students tend to be much older than middle schoolers, but there are some general things that will be very similar. As for organization, I’m not very organized by nature (Jill has helped with changing that recently) so I need to consciously start making moves towards having an organized classroom so that I can avoid having five units worth of papers on my desk.
- Start creating general unit outlines for my content areas. I realize this is a huge task to bite off, however, that being said I am only going to be in one class this summer (besides creating my portfolio) and should have the time to at least get the major topics for the year down and decide on an order that flows. Now, ideally I’ll know where I’m teaching before the day before school starts so that I only have to do this for one content area, but worst comes to worst it won’t necessarily be a bad thing for me to have a plan for chemistry and middle school.
- Start paring down my possessions and donate/sell what I don’t need. I have a pretty big apartment, in my opinion, and I have three closets, one of which is the size of a small office. All three of my closets are stuffed with clothes, things, and boxes. Now, the boxes were intentional because I know I will be moving soon but everything else is really starting to (literally) pile up. I currently have enough dinner and silverware to feed approximately 24 people with real (not plastic) stuff. I also have three vacuums and two air conditioners. So, needless to say, especially because I’ll be moving in with Jill at the end of the summer (baring any unforeseen catastrophe) and will have to combine my stuff with her stuff into an similarly sized, maybe even smaller, apartment. And that definitely sounds like something that would stress out a Jillian.
Thank you, and goodnight.