Hello there! I haven't been here in quite awhile! I've been so swamped with things to do that I can barely even look at my computer unless it's to do schoolwork lately. I've wanted to come back, but just couldn't. With our new schedules, I get up at 5:30 to get everyone ready and off to school, and by the time I finish reading with Josie at 9:30 or 10, I'm ready to fall into bed. DH and I generally meet in our room when I'm done, and don't even come back downstairs anymore.
My school is going pretty well. I have As in all my classes except math instruction, which is like hell on earth. The professor, S, had us buy a book that isn't a textbook at all, but rather a collection of math activities that we could conceivably use in a classroom one day, but which has no bearing on the material we're supposed to learn in class. He spends about six hours a session vomiting math garbage on us, while we furiously write down everything he says. The problem with this is if we miss a class, or he stumbles or misspeaks, we have almost no recourse because there's no book to look things up in, and whenever he feels like it, he renames a method after himself!!! I'm not kidding - so far we have the S method for factoring, two that he's named after his wife (the J methods), the S method for solving story problems, and so on. This makes things even worse because if we're confused after we get home, we can't look it up online, either! Also, his exams are the kind that are made to purposefully trick you, for instance if we don't have a definition written exactly the way he thinks he said it in class, it's wrong and we get points off for every word he changes. We've had one exam so far, and most of the class got Cs or below. In grad school, a C is pretty much like failing. I got a 79, which almost made me even more mad than if I'd gotten something lower, because it was so close to a B. We have another exam on Tuesday, and I've been furiously studying, but I'm not sure how much difference it will make, because I studied like mad for the last one, too and it didn't do me (or most other people) any good.
Really, the best news is that after this week, I'll be back to student teaching! I can't wait to get out of my classes and into the school again. I have to do a community service project, so once a week for the rest of the semester (or year, if it goes well) I will be holding an after-school story and activity time for first and second graders. I'm a little nervous about whether I'll get enough children to make it a real success, but we'll see what happens; if there aren't enough, I might open it up to other grades as well, although that would be challenging. My mentor teacher said that the principal and VPs had a really good opinion of me, which makes me feel happy and confident about going back.
Josie just got her first middle school report card, and she got a special certificate with it because she got all As in her merit classes! She's doing better this year than she ever has, and has almost perfect averages in four classes. I love that the teachers at the school she's at send weekly emails with the scoring updates for all her work, so there are no surprises, and if she's missed something when she's sick we immediately. She's been sick a few days, I suppose because of the new mix of kids is introducing new germs for her to fight off. The other big news for her is that we let her get contacts on Friday. She's been wanting them for a long time, and I decided to let her get them because she can't wear her glasses during karate, and I know from experience that that stinks. We were planning on not having her wear the contacts to school, but the acclimation schedule that the eye doctor gave her really means that we have to let her wear them there while she's getting used to them, and while I was nervous at that idea at first, she's taken to them like a fish to water! She has no problem getting them in and out, and the solution they gave her cleans them for her, so there's no scrubbing or anything. They're two-month disposables, but the pair she has right now is a free trial pair; we'll go back on Friday to get her actual prescription (I don't understand how that works, that they gave her some approximation or something? she can see fine with them now, so I don't know what they're going to do) and buy a supply to have on hand. I was shocked at how much less expensive they are now than when I wore them in my 20s - $15 a box! That's less expensive than glasses, for heaven's sake! We still got her a new pair of glasses, because her prescription changed, but hopefully we'll be able to use them more as a backup and not get them updated every year anymore.
Patrick is liking his new school a lot. He goes to aftercare, which is working out nicely - they go on field trips once every couple of weeks! He's going to be in beforecare once I start student teaching, but only for a short time, like 15 minutes or so, because I'm technically supposed to be at my school at the same time as when he can be dropped off now. My mentor teacher said that I don't have to worry about it, but I don't want to be The Intern Who Was Always Late. I'd rather be The One Who's Always Around when it comes time to apply for jobs, you know? :) The curriculum in his magnet program is great, and he seems to be really challenged now. They have palm pilots (which they call little computers) for each student, and they use them a lot at their seats, and he has spelling words like stingray and jealous.
Dh finally got hired at a new company, and starts next week, on the same day I start student teaching. He got a raise, but best of all will be able to work from home a few days a week. This will cut down on the rushed feeling a *lot* because he'll be able to pick up Patrick right after school on karate days, or at least that's the plan.
That's all the basic news. Next time (tomorrow, hopefully) I'll talk about the upset that's been going on surrounding my IL's 50th anniversary planning. I think it's OK now, but who knows.
10 months ago