Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Day 12....I haven't quit yet....

Yeah, today sucked, just like the past two weeks. I am completely overwhelmed with little bodies. We are barely getting through our phonics and phonemic awareness lessons every morning. I spend more time hushing than teaching. I didn't even bother with the name papers today because I need to get this DIBELS crap finished. (I have been writing down the cute/funny answers to share with you, as usual, but, as usual, I forgot the paper at school! I'll try to remember tomorrow, I promise!) This morning they watched one of my favorite tapes while I tried to test. It's one of my favorites because it's quiet. My BFF, the librarian, had given me some videos years ago that she was getting rid of, and I'm so thankful she did. Last year's babies (oohhh, I think I feel tears welling up.... I MISS THEM SO MUCH!) absolutely could NOT get enough of these movies. It's a set of movies based on quality, well-known children's books. The one we used today was their favorite. It was a "movie version" of There's a Nightmare in My Closet (Mercer Mayer), and a movie about a magic carpet, the name of which escapes me right now.

Then, this afternoon, it was a Sesame Street afternoon so I could try and squeeze in a few more babies. Since it was technically math time, we watched one of the number videos. I'm so annoyed that I couldn't enjoy and embrace the way they were enjoying the video. They actually wanted to sing along, and talk back to the characters when they asked questions. But, of course, they couldn't because I WAS TESTING!! Ugh!! I had to keep asking them to keep it down, which really made me sad. Normally, I would encourage that kind of interaction with the video. We will definitely watch that one again when we can all sing along and enjoy it.

Ideally, I would be able to leave the room, even if it's just to sit in the hallway, and test the children in quiet. If I had an actual assitant (and not just a wonderful parent volunteer!) I'd be able to do that. But, I obviously can't leave 37 of them alone in the room while I go out in the hall with one. Ms. H. isn't even with me enough for me to leave her with the kids in the room. Plus, I'm not really comfortable with that, as that's just far too much responsibility (and headache!!) for a volunteer. So, instead, they watch Sesame Street and Chicka Chicka, Boom Boom! Sue me!

I had to call a couple mommies today. One of my little PITAs* decided he would give some other kids the finger. I caught him red-handed. After I called his mom, his behavior just continued to go downhill. He spent a good chunk of time across the hall in Mrs. M.'s room, to ensure I didn't "bust my foot off in his ass!" (Surely one of my favorite Englewood-isms!)

I didn't hear anything from New Principal today about the half-day situation. She was actually out most of the day for a principals' meeting. I saw her for about a second in the hall, but didn't speak to her. Then, at the end of the day, I had to skedaddle, since today was Stud's first full day of school, and I had to pick him up. (In the windup, CSJ called just as I was pulling out the lot to tell me he was in the area, so he would pick him up for me, and meet me at the house. Like I said, he's been nice lately. Weird, huh? But, I digress...)

Thanks to CSJ, I actually was home just a few minutes after 3! I can't even remember the last time that happened. He just brought Stud home for a minute so I could see him, kiss him, hug him, then send him on his way. He stayed at his dad's last night, too. CSJ will probably take him as many nights as he can this week because he didn't see him over the weekend (Stud went to Michigan with a friend, remember?) and Stud will be going to Michigan again this weekend with the same friend. Then, the following weekend is Labor Day weekend, and in keeping with tradition, I'll be taking all my boys to Saugatuck. This year we'll be adding the "new" friend to our group, and I'm really excited, as is Stud Muffin, of course! Anyway, the point is, CSJ is feeling a little gypped, so he's going to take Stud as often as possible during the week.

So, tomorrow night is our open house. Um...yeah...I kind of forgot all about that. We haven't spoken about it since that first week of meetings. I voted to have it during the school day, but obviously I was outvoted. But, I was far from the only one who wanted that time! I HATE having to stay in Englewood past 3:00. It's simply not safe. Anyhoo, I'm not the least bit prepared for this. I didn't have my kids make anything cutesy to hang up, I have nothing to display, my room is still a hot mess, my carpets were taken out last week to be cleaned and haven't been put back yet (mostly because I have freakin' tables where the one used to go!!!), I'm simply NOT ready. But, my main focus tomorrow is going to be to tell the parents that they need to let all their friends/neighbors with kdg. age children know that school started 3 weeks ago, and they need to get them in NOW. They can't wait til after Labor Day, which is the tradition in this neighborhood. I'm going to let them know that half-day kdg. is a very real possibility to relieve the overcrowding, but if we get enough new kdg. students, we will be able to open a second room, and I can babysit ALL DAY. I mean, their kids can learn all day, yeah, that's what I meant... I just hope it makes a difference. But, I've been thinking about this a lot, and I'm starting to think getting the OK for half-day will sort of be a win-win for me. At the very least, I'll only have to deal with half the kids at a time, even though it'll SUCK to still have to deal with 40 sets of parents, do 40 report cards, keep 40 sets of records, etc. Then again, once we go half-day, I guarantee many parents will pull their kids out (like I explained yesterday) and my class will just get that much smaller. OK, I'm not going to stress about it anymore. I'm just going to let it go...

I think I may just embrace the fact that I'm home all alone, and take a nice, relaxing bath. I haven't done THAT in ages. I'm off to light a candle right now....

Children need love, especially when they do not deserve it. ~Harold Hulbert
This is definitely one of my FAVORITE quotes (I've shared it before) and it hangs in my room. I've been trying to keep this in the forefront of my mind lately, for obvious reasons!

*Pain In The Ass -- I know, I'm mean. Get over it!


Change for Good said...

You are my HERO with all those kiddos! WOW! WOW! WOW! Enjoy your night of R&R. Do you have people who show up at Open House? If I am lucky, I'll have three parents. I know that the teachers of the younger kids have some more, but really not that many more.

The picture where Ben is talking with me was at the end of the reception, where we are waiting (while they are TPing our car, etc) before we can go.

I totally had to google a garlic press. I am going to get one ASAP. I have two more dishes that I need to make with garlic cloves.

Do you have to do GRADE testing too? (In our K it is done in the spring in addition to DIBELS.)

Busy Bee Suz said...

I called one of my girls PITA today..ok. I cleaned it up a bit and called her PITB. :) I had a friend who named her cat pita though...
good luck this week. maybe it will get better???

karengberger said...

I'm so far behind here, but caught enough to see that you are overworked and frustrated by it - so sorry to hear it. I pray that things will be improving day by day. Those babies need you, your gifts and your experience! God bless you, Stud and those babies.

Clippy Mat said...

that's all i can say after reading ALL that. keeping it all together, don't know how you do it. but you do and as karen says those kids need you, especially the PITA's.
keep going chi-chi.

Change for Good said...

Did you hear me bitching all the way in Chicago? I minced garlic AGAIN tonight (because I was too lazy to buy a press tonight).....I WILL own one this weekend!