Sunday, August 22, 2010

Damn It!

I’ve been teaching for awhile, 12 years full time teaching, six years part time before that.

I was at my last school ten years. Not meaning to sound cocky, but I kind of had it down. The systems within the school that is. The kids, the day to day stuff, it’s different everyday and that’s what keeps it interesting.

So, here I am at a new job in a different district. Trying to stay on top of things. However, somehow, things seemed to get the better of me last week. Nothing big, but a whole lot of little.

Like on Monday, while I was at a workshop, some kid grabbed a pair of scissors and cut the power cord to my ELMO. The sub had no idea who it was.

Then, a couple days later, while lined up outside my room to go to an assembly, one of my students spit over the rail at the kids down below. I was locking my door and didn’t see it happen. But she almost spit on an admin. Who told me about it. I thought I was doing well just to line them up this time. The first assembly I just released them to walk down because that is what we do in high school. I got schooled for that as well.

Then there was the email that I forgot to do my yard duty. Yard duty. Not something that has ever come up in my career before – a thing I thought ended at the elementary level. The memo about yard duty assignments was in my opening documents folder (there are like 40 gabillion memos and protocols there). I brought the whole kit and kaboodle home for a reread this weekend.

I have pass codes for programs. I think there are like six pass codes. I keep getting them mixed up.

Then, the clincher. The students were supposed to take a school wide computer based test and all I had to do was charge up my laptop cart. Which I did. Plugged both plugs in.

However, when I passed the laptops out to my class, with the help of the Vice Principal who was assisting me, the students all started complaining, “Miss!! My laptop is about to die. It’s almost out of battery.”

Fuck me.

The Vice Principal told me that we would have my students take the test on Monday.

Meanwhile, a techie type kid finds a switch on the side of the cart that can turn off the whole system. Apparently some ADHD dodohead kid flipped it. I never even knew the switch was there in the first place so the chances of my checking it were pretty much nill.

That afternoon at the faculty meeting, the data collection part, it was mentioned that the data for the first test would have to wait as one teacher did not get her kids tested.....

I worked this whole weekend. I’m coming in tomorrow wide eyed and ready for them. Interesting is one thing; looking and feeling like the village idiot is quite something else.

33 comments:

Lynda Halliger-Otvos said...

Wow, I hope like hell it gets better for you. Sounds like a pretty formidable start to a year in the classroom--

or....

It can only go up from here?
{hug}

Jan said...

New jobs can often be SO stressful (so can old ones *sigh*). I hope things go more smoothly for you this week.

Val said...

good luck! i hope this week is a BIG improvement.

only a movie said...

OH, Pseudo, my first week at my current school was very similar to this. I felt like an idiot - after coming from a school where I was practically running the place.

Lots of love out to you today...!

Gaston Studio said...

I have to agree with the commenters thus far, that you have only to go up from there. How embarrassing that last incident would have been, and I know, 'cause I've done similar embarrassing things at new jobs over the years. Hope it'll be better this week; you deserve it.

Linda said...

A quote from the movie Quigley Down Under comes to mine. Quigley has been beaten and left for dead in the Australian desert and Crazy Cora says: Don't worry, on a new job it's quite common for things not to go well at first.

You know your job. You'll figure out the house rules here shortly. Hang in!

Jeff D'Antonio said...

If it makes you feel any better, I blew up the physics lab in my first week here, and almost set it on fire again a few weeks later. That was 14 years ago, and I still have my job...

Sorry for your troubles. Things can only get better.

Lori said...

Oh dear oh dear oh dear! It has to get better from here. Sorry about the tough start to the year. I pray that today is the start to things going much much better. Happy Monday! XX

Kristan said...

Aww... You'll get this system down too! There's always an expected transition period. Hang in there!

Michele said...

Days like these are bad enough but a whole week? I am so sorry. I hope this week is much much better.

Thanks for posting my button at the top of your page. Isn't Keely's artwork great?!

Mama Badger said...

Pseudo, it has to get better. Keep thinking about Christmas break, when you'll look back at these few weeks and sigh relief that you made it through!

Though, it doesn't sound like the staff is really there to "help you out" now does it... Creeps.

sage said...

Hang in there--that sounds like my job right now!

Brian Miller said...

good night...wow. it has been quite the week for you...school year is just starting so hopefully it smooths out a bit as it goes along...smiles.

lakeviewer said...

Pseudo, you moved and I lost you! I worked in middle school before I retired. (I was the principal!) And yes, we try to line them up because they tend to do wild and crazy things to each other. You'll adjust. The kids will think you're cool giving them more freedom, and you'll end up being their favorite teacher anyone.

It could be worse.

Anna See said...

Dear Lord! This sounds so very, very stressful!

I had a dream recently that my teacher mailbox was overstuffed with memos I never bothered to read-- and I haven't been in the classroom in ELEVEN YEARS!

I feel for you, Pseudo, but I KNOW YOU CAN DO IT!

Leigha said...

Hang in there, girl! It'll get better. I remember trying to learn the ropes when I became a full-time aquatics education coordinator and teacher. Ho-ly Ca-rap was there a ton of things to do, about which I knew practically nothing. The only upside to starting out feeling like the village idiot is that you pretty much have no where else to go but up.
Keep your chin up - it'll get better!

Fragrant Liar said...

Geez, what happened to just teaching the kids something? All the technocrap and micro-management has to drive you nuts! It's driving me nuts, and I don't have to be there!

creative kerfuffle said...

i agree w/ fragrant. what happened to teaching? yard work? really? are you kidding me? hmm. why didn't the assistant principal check the cart thingy to make sure it was on?
i certainly hope this week is better for you!

DuchessOmnium said...

Well, those of us who have read your blog from your last school know that you are a real teacher. And these kinds of problems in your new school don't undermine that fact at all. It's just stuff. It will get sorted and you will find a way to go back to being the teacher you are (plus yard duty and computer switches). I don't think it will take long.

Joanie M said...

Wow! It sounds like trial by fire!

This is why I could never be a teacher. I'd be in jail for smacking some idiot upside his or her head.

God bless you for what you do!!

Captain Dumbass said...

It's a brand new week, start takin names.

Irish Gumbo said...

Ouch. I'm with the Captain. Show up with a taser and a bullhorn, that should establish a rep :)

lisleman said...

Seems there are some kids that know you are new to the school and are taking advantage.

I agree with Joanie M. I could never teach kids. Maybe adults.

Christy (Columbia Lily) said...

it sucks to go to a new school and have to be the new kid again. I lost all my rep when I came to my new school and it was rough. And all the unwritten rules you don't even know about until you break them? Yeah...those are crappy too. I released kids to lunch at the first bell on my first day because that's how we did it at my old school and heard about it.

And the kids who cut the cords? I had a kid steal a digital projector from my room WHILE I WAS THERE during my first month at my new school three years ago. Still nags at me that I didn't catch it. Keep your chin up, it will get better....

Christy said...

You are NOT the village idiot. It's just a learning curve - you'll catch up soon. You'll be ruling the school in no time flat!

TechnoBabe said...

Go get 'em! I know you will come out a winner. You have had so many changes lately.

blueviolet said...

You're going to learn all these little tricks and then be one step ahead of their antics!

secret agent woman said...

Oh, my! What an introduction to a new job! But on the bright side - it can only go up from here, right?

Kate said...

Teaching is never dull...that is for sure!! You'll get used to it. I think everyone has growing pains in new schools so I think everyone understands. We've all been new at some point.

Stella said...

I'm at a new school this year too. New grades. New EVERYTHING. I have SIX preps. That means I had to write SIX syllabi last week...one AP class to boot!

And today I kicked out the ONE kid in school that I shouldn't have kicked out. All the other teachers said, "you better beg him to come back because otherwise your life will be hell here."

damn.

Just B said...

Oh, I've so been there! Village idiot you are NOT. The first year of teaching anywhere can be so gruesome. It's not you, it's the unwritten, nearly unknowable laws of teaching. Just breathe...

Maureen@IslandRoar said...

Grrr, I hate when little details that you're unaware of can make you feel a bit inept like this. You'll get it down and then they won't get Nothing by you. I mean anything. Sorry, Miss.

Lisa said...

A whole lot of little is right. I would have lost my stuff at some point. And what? Cut the cord on your ELMO? I don't even want to imagine the fury coming from MathMan if such a thing happened in his classroom. The fact that you're not in jail right now shows the power of your restraint.

I hope this coming week is better and that last week was better, too.