Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Thoughts . . .

I don't know how I am going to be able to go back to a full 5 day week next week. These last two have been so great. Not that I have done anything interesting, but the random days off have given me time to catch up and plan. Last night was the first night that I had my planning for the next day done by 6pm so that the evening was all mine to veg. Over the weekend I also planned a month-long reading unit and writing unit for my group of second and third graders.

Yeah! Progress!

But that's about where it ends with my long term planning. I'm hoping to get some more accomplished this weekend. I want to tackle my 8th grade writing plan next.

I'm still struggling with what exactly I'm supposed to be teaching these ESL kids who all speak English. I know that they all need a lot of help with reading comprehension and writing so I am trying to focus on those areas. I just keep questioning myself all the time as to whether or not I am doing the right thing. I'm constantly worrying that I am pulling them out of some important lesson in their classes and that this ESL program is becoming detrimental to them rather than helping them. Maybe if I were more confident about my teaching skills and what I am teaching them I wouldn't feel this way.

And, I know that maybe I shouldn't speak too soon, but I'm not sure if I like being a pull-out teacher. Yes, I have so much more freedom than all of the other teachers. And, yes, especially in my region, where micro-managing is taken to an extreme level, I'm probably the only teacher in the school who doesn't get told what to do. I just keep seeing all of the classes and wishing that I were a classroom teacher. I would love to have my own class of second graders.

I still love the kids in ESL, and the idea of being the first teacher of new arrival students--only that's not my situation. I think I could really get excited about teaching a self contained ESL class. I'm just not in the right neighborhood for that.

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