Thursday, September 26, 2013

Feeling Overwhelmed

My school system has a new hybrid block schedule in place this year.  Honestly, no one is a fan.  It's complex and weird-- some strange combination of a 7-period day and a 4x4 block.  Part of the reason for the change is that students now take eight classes per year, rather than seven, so they have more opportunities for credits.  Another reason is that teachers, who previously had to be paid extra to teach more than five classes, are now all teaching six with no extra pay.  

Who doesn't love a list?

  • I adore my 90-minute classes, because I feel like we're accomplishing so much. 
  • I adore my kids this year.  Most of them are super sweet and very fun.
  • I adore that it's Homecoming Week, and I work with an incredible group of faculty and staff who know how to have fun and be professional.  (More on that later.) 
  • I adore that I work with a principal who respects us and gives us room to do our jobs.

  • I don't adore that I have double the planning, but not double the planning time
  • I don't adore not knowing all my kids until second semester.  
  • I don't adore the massive amount of grading I'm experiencing from my block classes.
  • I don't adore that I feel nearly as busy and overwhelmed as I did while completing my National Board Portfolio last year.

Yesterday, I had a meeting with a group of teachers from lots of surrounding counties.  We were asked to rate our school year on a scale from 0-10.  I thought about it, and maybe I'm a glass-half-full kind of person, but I decided my school year deserved a B, so I went with 9.  Let me tell you, it has been much worse before.  Aside from one person, no one else in the room gave their year above a 6.5.  Huh!  Maybe I'm not the only one feeling overworked and underpaid.  Sometimes it's just nice to commiserate, huh?  

Remembering my blessings this morning-- my kids are fine; my classroom is my own and is full of learning and love; my bills are paid even if my wallet's not full.  It's not so bad, after all.
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