Sunday, February 04, 2007

Sleepy weekend, or why I have nothing worthy of note to relate....

I have had a number of comments this weekend about the lack of updates. Good grief. I must be the equivalent of the local newspaper. I would love, at this stage, to report that I have had a wild and wonderful weekend, but it was so quiet, watching grass grow would have been more exciting.

I think I have underestimated in a big way just how much I have drained my physical and emotional reserves in the past year. If I sit down for longer than a few minutes, I fall asleep, and that is what I have done most of the weekend, apart from venturing out briefly to get bread yesterday, and going to church and our monthly shared lunch today. Snoozing? I have got it down to a fine art. David actually woke me at 6.30 this evening asking plaintively if we were going to have any dinner today. Um, yes. Food. We do need food. I thought about it for a few minutes and was just drifting off again when my mother phoned and jolted me out of my nap. And this is the woman who never needs to sleep much. I am up late and awake early. I have never "napped" in my life, and have no desire to do so now. Just the body thinks otherwise. Sigh. And we have had beautiful weather too. Wasted on me, it was.


I can report that my house is a cobweb free zone at last. And I have finally managed to get the box with the Christmas tree out of my kitchen and back into the shed in the garden. We now have clean clothes and my hair is under control. Rivetting stuff, isn't it.

School was tough. Not easy to deal with the anger of the kids, who had no idea that their old teacher was leaving. No-one told them. That took the first part of every lesson to sort. Once we got going, it went well. I think. However, in one class, a group of girls refused to take any part in the lesson, so I ignored them, and got on with the others. A couple joined in when they saw what we were doing, but some did nothing. There is absolutely nothing anyone can do to make them listen if they won't. But that was just a small group. The rest of the classes were hectic. I seemed to be in perpetual motion. The kids were involved anyway, and busy. I have no idea how anyone would or could judge what it was like, but I think about 7/10 would be fair. It was not an unmitigated disaster. There were a few moments when I had serious doubts, but we got through that. And tomorrow is another day. I was talking to some of my teaching friends today at the shared lunch, and they think enthusiasm will go a long way. One offered me a job at an "easy"school! The teacher who left, by the way, is going back to America. She said she had never seen kids like this in all her teaching experience. The school I work at has an extraordinary number of special needs kids. I did say I like a challenge, didn't I? If I survive this, I can survive anything.

My laptop? Well, that is another story. Suffice to say that I have not got it yet. My excitement might have been a little premature. I live in hope. You know, teaching something like textile technology is not the same as teaching, say, Maths. In an academic class, the teacher stands in the front and teaches. In Textiles, I am controlling up to 25 kids moving about, working on 7 sewing machines, 4 computers, 2 embroidery machines, ironing, cutting out, printing designs on the sublimation printer, learning how to use pinking shears etc. All at the same time. I have to be everywhere all the time, especially when they can't re-thread the machines, or break a needle, or need help on the computer. The room rings to the sound of 20 odd voices yelling "MISS" "MISS" "MISS" all the time. (All teachers seem to be called Miss, by the way. Men are Sir. This is possibly because none of them ever remember a name, of course.) Anyone walking in would see chaos, but it is not really. Everyone knows what they are doing. Ah well, it will get easier. I hope. I still think that this is where I am supposed to be, and what I am supposed to be doing.

I did intend to write about something completely different, but my fingers ran away with themselves. And my brain is too tired to protest. So...... this will have to be the missive for today. I will be back tomorrow.


Morning Glory said...

Ah, what terrific challenges. I can't help but think that they will end up responding to the simple fact that you like what you're doing, even though it's hard at first. It really sounds like you have an interest in them, and students do respond to people who show consideration.

Get some rest, Friend.

At A Hen's Pace said...

Your classroom sounds a lot like mine! Only six students in mine...but me in perpetual motion between the six of them and the kitchen sink, the washer, the dryer, the phone...a very similar "dance"!

It sounds like it's going well, though!!