We had our last "sanity-check" meeting last night with a Teach for America facilitator. It has been a nice thing to have each week, making sure we're on track and have some people looking out for us. The topic of the meeting was the different phases you go through as a first year teacher (and really every year...as this job is a perpetual circle ...FML)
What's crazy is yesterday I was at one stage...and now I feel like I am at the second stage. First they say that you are an idealist, that quickly fades though once you are in the classroom. You transition into a crazy busy person that focuses solely on the day-to-day because you feel like there is so much going on around you that there is no future past the 8 hours in the classroom each day. That was the phase I was in until today. I felt so much pressure and that there was so much to do all the time, especially with basketball on top of it after school.
But, as a result of today and the last few days, I have really moved into step three: disillusionment. Today SUCKED. Last week SUCKED. No fun, no smiling, no positivity - and these are things I am not used to in my life. I don't want to be unhappy, I don't want to feel like I am putting effort in for nothing, I don't want to feel weight on my shoulders. UGH
These kids...like I don't even know. Why do you make the same decisions each day? For example, what put me over the edge today. I try to greet the students at the door each day. I like saying hello, and I also like seeing where everyone is at (getting a quick read on them). WELL unfortunately that will not be happening anymore because in my 6th period class the students take each others' journals and HIDE THEM. EVERY SINGLE FREAKING DAY. Okay, I am not stupid, I don't think. Maybe I just don't get the joke, but I absolutely do NOT understand why it is funny EVERY DAY. So today I just snapped and said, "if this happens again I am going to walk every single one of you down to the office and get you written up, because I know that every single one of you has hidden a journal at some point this year. If you all want to go to ISS (In school suspension) for 3 days, then fine, I guess I'll have another planning period free for three days. Either way, do not touch a single journal unless it has your name on it." I wanted to add a few cuss words, but I resisted.
Anyway, I just feel like there are a lot of things going wrong. Hopefully with some positive reinforcement, some new incentives, and me just coming in with a better attitude (because I vented here) things will go better tomorrow. Everyday is a NEW DAY. I wrote that on a post-it today. Believe it.