Friday, March 1, 2013


It's been a long year.  I have one more week and then I have a week off. I'm not as negative about teaching as I was last year, but I still feel that middle school is not the right place for me. I will continue to try to find an elementary (k-5) position, but usually when a principal posts a job, they already have someone in mind, so finding another position is not that easy.

I have certainly learned a lot, but it takes a special kind of animal to teach middle school kids and that is not me. They need an elephant and I'm a raccoon, if that makes any sense. I don't feel like I am making a difference.

Next year I will be teaching two, 6th grade math classes and one advanced 7th grade class, which I am actually looking forward to. Now that I have 2 years under my belt, I feel much more confident in my abilities and how to handle the children. The sixth graders are like babies and have not been, let's say, corrupted, yet. The advanced 7th graders (many gifted in math) at least have the skills that allow them not to be frustrated and we can move at a faster clip. Many of them are so bright that they will skip 8th grade math altogether and move right on to Algebra.

Eighth grade has been a real challenge for me. At least half of my 8th graders know me because they had me in 7th grade last year, but the other half are mature beyond their years, have no motivation, don't care what the consequences are and have parents that are either checked out or nonexistent.

I now have 25 desks so I've had to do some adjusting of the environment in my room.

This is a 60 year old building, so ignore the window blinds in the back that don't quite stay shut. This is the view as the kids come in the door. I always start with the desks in groups, but inevitably they show that they can't work that way and we go back to row. I'll try again at the start of next year. I also need to do more community building activities at the beginning of next year too.

My little area is this corner in the back.

Here is a close-up of the homework/objectives board.

This is the view from the back of the room facing forward. If you look closely you can see I use a document camera.
Here is the front board that they face.

Here is the archive/word wall.

This is a close-up of those posters. We are working on probability right now.


1 comment:

Juli said...

I love the classroom set ups that Youngest and Oldest have... Youngest has hexagon tables with six peers, Oldest has tables of two. (Think old style science labs) But I agree, desks in rows sometimes is the only way to go.

My SIL teaches Middle School, it's the only grade she ever wanted to teach. My sister teaches Kindergarten... it's perfect for her. TWO TOTALLY different things, I agree.