Sunday, May 13, 2012

Crawling Towards the Finish Line

This last week has been a godsend because I have been able to relax and wrap my head around the fact that come August I will be a certified teacher with my own classroom and everything. However, I have approximately 19 days until I can even begin to think like that. Graduation is June 2 and even though it doesn't seem that far away, I feel like it is taking forever because classes are not compulsory right now.

I saw this linky party and I thought it would be a great little blog post to do so I can keep the ball rolling with my new blog. The point of the linky party was to post what went great this year and what went not so great this year. Considering I've been in the classroom for the majority of this year I thought I could definitely contribute!!

The Good

1. Departmentalizing
This year my mentor and the other fifth grade teachers departmentalized. My teacher and I mostly taught Science and Social Studies. We had a Flex group and we still did Whole-group reading with our own class. Departmentalizing was an AMAZING experience!! Not only did it make planning easier, but it was a huge confidence boost to be able to teach something that I was extremely confident in teaching. It was also awesome to get to know all 86 fifth graders, not just the 27 in my class.

2. Time Management
Holy Moly! In order to make sure I could actually complete this year with flying colors I had to focus on my time management skills and decide which assignments needed to come first and which assignments could wait. Time management didn't only benefit my graduate school performance but it also helped my pacing in the classroom. Pacing was one aspect of teaching that was incredibly hard for me to figure out because the experience I had before this program was so minimal, but as soon as I realized what fifth graders could and could not do in the time allotted, we got so much accomplished together.

3. Hands-On Learning

Because my mentor teacher departmentalized this year with the other fifth grade teachers I was able to see how amazing Hands-On Learning was first hand. In Science, mostly because of the Science MSA this year, the kids got to do tons of experiments and investigations in the Science Lab. The amount that they achieved was amazing. I think that making experiences real for students is incredibly important. I can remember times in my own education where we did hands on experiments and those are some of the sharpest memories I have of my education. In my own classroom, if at all possible I want to be able to do as many hands-on experiments and situations as possible (but not so many that the kids get burned out on them). 

The Not-So-Good

1. Teaching First Grade
Potentially, I think I could one day be a first grade teacher. However, teaching first grade this year was one of the most difficult things I had to do. In my MAT program, we teach our preferred grade for 8 months, and then we move on to a grade at the opposite end of the spectrum. It was an extremely hard transition that I only had 6 weeks to get used to and those six weeks were NOT enough

2. Eating Healthy/Working Out
Next year I'm DETERMINED to find the time to take care of my body and my mind equally.

3. Developing Positive Relationships with my Peers
All I can say is that I'm a very particular person, with a unique background and when people make generalized comments about my race as a teacher or my parental situation, it makes me not like them.

You all should join the fun and link up!!


  1. Thanks for linking up! I am following your blog now! :)

    Adventures of a Third Grade Teacher

  2. I think time management is a struggle for all first year teachers. I know it was for me. It is crazy when something you think is so simple takes a while for the students and then something you think will take awhile takes them 5 minutes. Eating healthy and working out is on my to do list for this summer and the coming year.