In my last post I hinted that there was the potential of change on the horizon. It came. Much more quickly than expected.
A few weeks ago a school that I had been substitute teaching at reached out to me about an LTO (long term occasional) maternity leave position teaching Grade One full time mid-November through January and then in the afternoons only from January until June. I went in for an interview and it felt like it was almost an offer, rather than an interview. They had me in for an observation and I was waiting to hear whether I would be offered the position or not. I was caught a bit off guard to get a call from the principal on a Saturday. He asked me if I could start Monday (September 29th). I wasn't prepared (at all) but starting six weeks earlier than expected didn't feel like a reason to turn it down.
A few days later I wasn't so sure.
The kids were really good, but those first few days were hairy. There was so little prepared, no sense of organization that I could figure out, no prep time to prepare or figure things out A classful of student to be accountable to, never mind parents or administration. I felt as if I had made a terrible mistake. (To say nothing of leaving the kids.)
Now, almost ten days in I am feeling slightly better. Slightly. Things are marginally more organized. I am finding what few resources do exist. There is still no prep time. No money. The parents and administration have been understanding, but I know it won't be too much longer until I'm expected to be caught up and to keep up.
I am hoping that this was the right move. It is giving me experience in a grade I haven't taught outside of my practicum experience. It will close the hole that could have otherwise been quite large on my resume. I only have seven Grade One students and they seem like Good Kids --kind, pretty keen, quite bright, respectful, etc. (though I also teach a few SKs for Math and all the Grade Twos for History/Geography and Physical Education).
I am struggling with the "core curriculum" model that this school uses. It is so vastly different than the IB model and honestly isn't a good fit for me from what I have seen so far. I'm trying to think of ways that I can bring more of the IB elements in. Of course, there is no time to think. (For those to whom this comes across as as gobbledygook: core curriculum is very "facts" based whereas the IB strives to put things into context and look at larger and more open-ended questions.)
So forgive my sudden disappearance. I am neck-deep in subtraction problems, Canadian Geography, line dancing, and Roald Dahl books.
The Bean and Sprout are adjusting well. My sister, aka their favourite aunt, is watching them during the days along with her own little guy. It has been a huge relief to have her and to know that they are in good hands.
And because y'all are so patient, here are some cute kid pics from the weekend...