I broke all four core values.
For those of you who have been reading from day 1 of my rookie teaching experience—it is certainly not all smiles and laughter. I don’t want readers to think that I only write about my negative happenings, but in retrospect they are much more intriguing than days when my students are well behaved and doing exactly what they are supposed to. Friday was, by far, the most difficult day of teaching I’ve had so far. After wiping tears and smudged mascara off of my face, I admitted to my principal and colleagues that I felt like a negative five year teacher. Any misbehavior that you could have nightmares about came to fruition last period on Friday. Students were laughing, smiling incessantly, talking, bouncing around in their seats, bouncing around out of their seats and making noises that should never come out of any human being. It was a war zone: me against them and they were winning. When my two hour class period ended, I felt like an absolute mess. I had begun tearing up in class before it was over, and students could tell that I was upset. Luckily, this kicked them back into serious mode for the last few minutes but I couldn’t forget how they had made me feel for the previous hour and fifty-five minutes.
My dean of students saw me crying in my room after and she was highly displeased to say the least. She said, write down the name of every student who gave you trouble. It was easier for me to write down students who didn’t misbehave. That list was two students long, or two students short. Needless to say, my class heard from the dean and my principal for about forty minutes after school. Among their many repercussions for being disrespectful, students were required to write me an apology and hand it in for homework the next day. Here are a few of my favorite lines:
“[…] I will cherish the hours you put into our day so that we can go on to live very successful lives.”
“I will learn to respect you and be grateful for what you do for me.”
“I need you because I need to be able to pass the school year. I regret everything that I have done to you.”
“I apologize and we shouldn’t be putting all the pressure on you because you are a new teacher. We should be appreciating teaching us what we have to learn so thank you.”
“I know that I have been acting very foolish lately and I have to change my behavior so that I can be a successful student in your class.”
This is by far the best one…
“Over the past few months I have talked back to you, said negative things about you, gave you attitude and many other actions. Now, I am going to do the right things and bring my behavior up by paying attention more and not talking back and not being disrespect.”
My immediate thoughts: I haven’t heard you say negative things about me to my face so that must mean you’re talking about me behind my back. Thanks. Additionally, I wish that you would have paid more attention to that grammar lesson on adverbs. Then, perhaps, your apology would be more eloquent.
Of course, at the end of the day, they make me cry but their successes absolutely outweigh their insane behaviors.