Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Contractual Hours Mid-Week Update!

It has been a bizarre week! I have committed to arriving at 7:15 every day and leaving by 3:15.
Monday: I found with a forced reduction in work time I was slightly more efficient. I put grading on the back burner as there were more pressing issues to complete (curriculum/notes, copies, parent emails). I was invited to attend a lunch meeting during Tuesday and Thursday’s lunch, (this overtakes my ‘lunches off’ rule for those days).
Tuesday: My child was sick and I could not attend. Luckily, classes were only an hour long due to assemblies and fire drills. I missed a mandatory staff meeting from 3-4:30.
Wednesday: We had shortened classes (60 minutes) today for a PLC (professional learning community) early release. Classes were only 60 minutes. The afternoon was spent preparing for a field trip (coordinating with and paying the zoo), responding to parent emails, attempting to update my grade book (but not finishing), and preparing notes/curriculum/activities to finish this week and get me through to Tuesday of next week. Grading was put off (this kills me as I feel timely and good feedback is one of the most important resources for students to improve work).
So let’s check-in on the following:
a.       My emotional state: I’m happy to be home more and feel more rested in the evening. I love getting an extra 15-30 minutes at home in the morning and not forcing myself to work every extra minute I have.
b.      My physical state: This week was daylight saving time which wrecks its own havoc on my body and considering my son kept me up most of one night and gave me a rough day ‘off’; I am feeling pretty good. I hit snooze when I need it and relax with friends as well. I don’t feel as run down.
c.       My grading pile: labs due (10 minutes/lab x 60) + test make-ups (2x3min/test) and quizzes (14x5min/test)… it is 2” deep and an estimated 11.2 hours of grading….this can’t be right…
d.      My overall self-assessment of my effectiveness as an educator: I am developing curriculum like a mad-woman, but have put off timely feedback for my students and have leaned on my colleagues to administer tests and tutor after school. I’m feeling guilty for putting a limit on my hours that others have to pick up. I am more patient with my students and happier in the classroom, (except for that damn pile  of grading)!
Heather’s Assessment of Kristi:   
Although not only has this week been hectic as stated by Kristi, these last FEW weeks have definitely been off with Snow Days, Late Starts, Assemblies, and Half Days, we have very rarely seen our students for the “normal” amount of time.  This has made everyone a little edgy.  I am, however, seeing a much more relaxed version of Kristi.  She jokes and laughs more, and doesn’t look or act so overwhelmed.  She is doing a good job (on Monday and Wednesday) getting here at her scheduled time, and leaving on time, too.  It will be interesting to see whether this experiment is one with more positive than negative results.  I am curious about how big that pile of grading will actually get!