Saturday, August 23, 2008

Summer Planning?

It's the last week of summer and as Nancy says "everyone has planning on the brain." Everyone except me that is. I've never been a good long-term planner. Beginning from my first summer before teaching I just couldn't sit down and plan. Then it was because I had no idea what my ESL pull-out teaching assignment would look like or what would be expected of me. While all my TFA colleagues were home planning their hearts out I just couldn't as much as I wanted to.

Now that I've had three years experience I still am no good at planning. My current excuse is that I want my lessons to support what the students are doing in their regular classrooms so I wait to see what they are doing with their teachers and plan accordingly. Usually that means that I plan on a week by week basis. Also, I have six grade levels (K-5) that I have to plan for. That really doesn't lend itself very well to long term unit planning for each class. Lastly, when it comes to summer planning, I'm just not under pressure like the other teachers are to get things ready for day one. On September 2nd our building will fill with students anxious for their first day. Teachers will be setting the tone for the year, introducing routines and procedures, and generally trying to make it though the day. I on the other hand will stroll in five minutes before the bell rings and get down to paper work and administrative duties. Three weeks in when teachers are really starting to know their classes and summer had faded to a distant memory I'll be picking up my kids for the first time. Needless to say, I'll have some time to think about what I want to teach for my first week of class.

I wish that I were more like Nancy and that I loved to plan, but so far I just haven't hit that groove. I'd love to think that with a different teaching position or a more supportive school environment that I'd be able to do it, but maybe I just don't have it in me.

So here I am in the last week of summer. School's just a distant thought in my mind. Before I know it I'll wake up and it'll be back to work, the summer a yesterday away.

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