Monday, September 29, 2008

New Phase of Life

A friend of ours that goes to the Spanish Branch recommended my name as a candidate for a long-term substitute position at a local high school, (not the one my kids go to). One of the teachers of the English Language Development class is on maternity leave, and they need a full-time substitute for six weeks, so I took the job. I started with training on Thursday, and then teaching on Friday. Actually, on Friday they had been promised a movie, so that was easy. Today was the first real day of teaching. I have five grammar and writing classes, and one communications class. They are divided up into Intro, Intermediate and Advanced classes. The classes where there are 19 or more students are the most challenging - I have 3 of those. The other three were actually fun to teach. The three big ones are challenging, but not unmanageable. Today I realized that being a Mom of six active children teaches you a lot about classroom management. Part of it is just to laugh with the kids and have some fun with them. Part of it is distraction, and making sure they have something to do. Part of it is laying back a little and letting them have some room to decide to do what you asked them to do. Others just need some consistent asking. I haven't had any big troubles yet, but came pretty close today with a girl who seemed perfectly innocuous the first day, but proved much more of a challenge today. She was sitting in a teacher's chair and would not move when asked. This is when I laid back for a moment - and she ended up telling me about her knee operation. I listened intently, validated her feelings, and then turned my attention to something else for a moment. Next thing I knew, she was off the chair. If I wasn't Mary's Mom, I wouldn't have know how to handle that situation! :)

I love you, Mary. :)

Did everyone know that the Past Progressive Interrogative Tense in English is the following?
Singular: Was the fish swimming in the sea?
Plural: Were the girls dancing in the park?

That's what I taught all day today.

I was the only teacher today in the Staff Room (a small one - not the main one) that had a home-made dinner. It was Ham Loaf from yesterday. Everyone else had Easy Mac, or processed chicken nuggets or a frozen dinner. I was just burstin' my buttons over that.

After school I taught two piano lessons and then went to Joseph and Josh's soccer games (even though Josh didn't play). Joseph tied 1-1, and the Varisty barely won 5-4. The last ten minutes were pretty hairy. Clark and Mary Jeanne came at the end - they are so fun to talk to. I didn't know they knew soccer so well! And Dara Dee was there, as well as all my good soccer buddies - Mike & Karla, Betty, etc. I also had a really nice talk with Tim, who was disappointed that his bag-pipe reed was broken! He is a great guy. Well, obviously, this is turning into more of a Journal entry. But that's basically what this blog is anway.

Our Family Home Evening was around dinner talking about the state of the economy and the gangs that my vice-principal told me some of my students belong to. The message was, "It doesn't really matter what happens in the outside world. What matters is that our family is sealed together and we are keeping the commandments and serving the best we can. Everything else will just 'come out in the wash', so to speak. It doesn't really matter."

Tonight I'm grateful for ordinances, the plan of Salvation, experience in mortality, and the Savior.


LizBeth said...

You are absolutely right! Knowing what really matters is what gets us through times like these. You are an amazing example to all around you. Those kids at school will never be the same after having you teach them for 6 weeks. Do they know how lucky they are? Good job!

Curtis said...

Thanks for the uplifting message!