Friday, January 29, 2010

Sweet Friday

1st block was dramatically different today. I don't know if it was the assigned seats or what, but they were much quieter and willing to listen, and the overall tone of the class just seemed more respectful and relaxed. :)

Thursday, January 28, 2010

First Observation!!!

Mrs. C came to observe me today during 1st block. I wasn't too nervous about it, I don't really mind being observed by now, but I did make sure to make it to school around 7:15 so that I could get everything ready for the day and in time for her arrival at 7:45. I made it to school with no problem, and since Mrs. H is away at a conference in South Carolina, a janitor opened the door for me and I got everything set up in time. Since I can't log in to Mrs. H's computer, the starter for the day was a little different, we just did a quickwrite based on the prompt that I wrote on the board. The students came in and settled down pretty quickly, I think the change in starters distracted them a little though. Not to mention the huge distraction of having had a substitute yesterday, and another one today. Somehow, when Mrs. H isn't in the room it's a whole 'nother ball game. I think, all in all, the lesson went quite well, but there were just so many times when there was talking when I was talking. So at first I was very discouraged, and by the end of 1st block (because Mrs. C stayed the whole time, I thought she would only stay 45 minutes) I was ready for a Come-to-Jesus meeting with 1st block. After she left, I flicked the lights to get their attention and told them that we would be having a discussion tomorrow. There are so many kids in that class who are respectful and really do such a great job, it's just the few (girls) who keep on talking when I ask them to stop that gets me. Also, several students had food out on their desks, which they know is against Mrs. H's class rules, and one was listening to an ipod. I was terribly afraid that Mrs. C would think I had horrible classroom management, but she actually was very complimentary and said that she thought the class had gone well. She gave me an A-, but said that was basically only to motivate me to keep improving. (I'll never understand the grading system in the education department.) They assume that if they give us an A we'll stop trying to improve. But anyway, she had only good things to say, and she really liked the activity that I did with the students. I divided them all into groups and had each group be responsible for creating a storyboard, or comic strip, of one section of The Pardoner's Tale. They did a really good job on it. :) And at the end of class, I had them all present, to give an idea of the story as a whole.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Interning at Bryant High School

I've been so blessed in my placement this semester! My cooperating teacher is so wonderful and supportive, I'll have the opportunity to learn so much from her. I'm about two weeks in to my internship, and I can already tell that I'll love teaching as a career. It's been a change, making the switch from college time to high school time, but it's worked out pretty well. The first day I observed each of the classes, and introduced myself, and the second day I jumped in and started doing the starter activity with each class. After that, my teacher let me start doing the literary devices for 2nd block and the rhetorical devices for 3rd block. I taught my first full day last Thursday! It was a pretty easy day, 1st block had a test and 3rd block had a timed writing essay, but I did have the chance to read and discuss Act 4 of Macbeth with 2nd block. It was an interesting experience. It's such a change to go from participating in college level classes to teaching high school level classes. I love it though. :)

Friday, January 22, 2010

National Championship!!! Roll Tide!!!

I was able to relax in Tuscaloosa for a few days before practice started. The practices were scheduled to be pretty long, but we spent some of the time talking about the trip, and then we got out early! It was so nice. Plus, we were able to practice in the indoor football facility, so we didn't have to be out in the cold. It was so great to hang out with all the girls again. I'll never miss practice, but I will definitely miss the girls.
We met at Moody and hopped on the bus to the Tuscaloosa Airport, where we went through a sort of abbreviated security check and walked straight out to the plane. I love to fly, and I got to sit with E.O. and R.W., two of my good guard friends. I also got to sit by the window, which I love. :) I think the runway was little short or something, because as soon as the plane started moving we were accelerating and lifting off. They played Yay Alabama over the PA system as we took off, which was amazing.
We landed in Long Beach, and had the rest of the evening off! E.O. really wanted to try a place called In-n-Out Burger, so we got directions from the concierge and walked a few blocks down Cahuenga Blvd. It was so cheap and delicious!
Then we walked back towards the subway platform and took the Red Line to Hollywood and Highland. It was so great, we shopped around, I found an awesome purse at Nine West, we saw Graumann's? Chinese Theater and I found Judy Garland and Marilyn Monroe and Rock Hudson. We grabbed a milkshake at Johnny Rocket's (the waitstaff seemed strangely hostile, and we weren't wearing anything UA, so it must have been personal) and just walked around until it was time to head back to the hotel and grab some sleep.
We had to get up pretty early on Wednesday, a lot of running around to do. We took a picture in front of the Rose Bowl in full uniform, went to practice, and then put our uniforms back on for a parade through Universal Studios. The parade was supposed to be a short pep rally, instead we looped through the whole place a couple of times. We were pretty exhausted. Definitely a little dehydrated. But after that we got to go back to the hotel and freshen up, and then I headed out with E.O. and J.P. to eat at Universal Studios and walk around. We ran into R.W. on the way, and joined her group to try the Simpson's simulation ride. I was paranoid up to the very last second that it might actually be a real roller coaster. It was actually pretty fun, as long as I'm actually stationary I don't mind being tossed around in a simulation, lol.
After that we joined the band for a guided tour of Universal Studios. We all piled onto a series of trolleys and had a private tour of the back lot where they actually film movies. It was pretty cool, they had a lot of special effects along the way for fun. We also had to stop at one point because they were filming for Desperate Housewives, so we saw Wisteria Lane and everything. :) I don't follow that show like I do with some others, but I definitely watch it sometimes, so it was pretty cool to see the actual set.

Saturday, January 2, 2010