Prior to UC starting the majority of my time was focused on being a student- teacher...it carried over to all aspects of my life. My sleep, eating, social, and even workout habits revolved around my school schedule. It is difficult to go back to being a student and a student-teacher. The late night make difficult mornings and knowing when sleep trumps homework or when homework trumps lesson plans and where Relay and social activities and now work come in has not quite come yet. But it will get there. I know it will. Right now is just about repositioning, flipping, and rotating (check out all of those Geometry words!) my schedule to make it work for me.
What does this have to do with being a teacher? Everything! Teaching is a balance. There is a balance between school and home, and a balanced routine that needs to be set in the classroom. We help children get into a balanced routine and we help them make changes as we go (visiting German Ambassadors, assemblies, birthdays, and behavior lessons to name a few in recent time). As much as we need to be flexible, the children do to.
I am also really moving away from my exceptional procrastination habits. As a teacher it brings chaos. We have enough changes that we cannot control, that I want to learn to be in control of the work and preparation I do have.
My mentor teacher and I had a conversation about this today. We both like to be at school early. We are usually there a solid hour or more before the students arrive. Why? We need that time. We need that time to establish ourselves in the classroom and really, mentally and physically prepare for the day. Without it we rush into the chaos of the children arriving instead of helping them ease into the day.
I realize that this was part of my frustration with last year. I was rushing everywhere all of the time. I would rush into this meeting or work or class or through homework. By the time I was settled in and prepared to begin the meeting it was almost over and I was rushing to the next thing. I don't want to be that kind of student, and I really do not want to be that kind of teacher. Prep time is invaluable. My major goal for this quarter is to use my time, really use it well. I want to stay ahead and prepare for my weeks and days appropriately. I can't promise I will not rush, but I hope to at least slow down!