Life is an inevitable parade of trials, tests, and obstacles to overcome. They are simple and complex all rolled into one. I have my first student-teaching assignment finalized and ready to go Monday. A middle school resource room veteran teacher has agreed to let me join her class for 8 weeks. I start by just getting a feel for things then slowly take on more and more responsibility until I’m teaching the class myself, while she just sits and watches.
I am terrified. I keep reading about all the things I’m supposed to do and I’m overwhelmed by all of that. Trying to think how I’m going to do all that I’m supposed to do in the midst of a pandemic when students are to remain seated throughout the class, can’t do group work, and will be doing all their work online…even though they are sitting in the classroom 2 to a table, physically distanced a grand 4 feet instead of the recommended minimum of 6 feet.
The one thought that I have is that at this point, everyone is winging it! How can anyone judge my student interaction if I’m on the opposite side of a plexiglass barrier and the students are messaging me within a LAN classroom?
I’ve tried to make things as normal as possible for me. I bought new clothes. I have lunches planned. I know the route and that it takes me about 20 minutes to drive there. Oh, and my mom says she is buying me a lunchbox for my first day of school!
Right, so this is a middle school. There are seven classes a day, I think. The teacher teaches 7th and 9th grade but not 8th. She prefers the two. Being back in a Middle School reminded me that I always wanted to teach middle school. Technically, I can. My license is for special education K through 12 and Elementary Education 1 through 8. The classes are reading and writing, language arts, English Culture for ESL students, and Life Skills (think applying for jobs, balancing accounts, starting conversations).
The room is about 15 by 20 with the largest class being 21 students. The smallest is 6 students. I think I am most looking forward to teaching the Life Skills class. The teacher made her own curriculum based on a module for gifted students that has been modified (by chunking, not dumbing down) so that her students can grasp onto smaller pieces.
There are two doors, no windows. The class is adjacent to another classroom instead of a hallway. Therefore, everyone in our classroom has to pass through that classroom first.
Still betting we make it to October before complete shut down.