5.10.2011

Training Day 2 & I can't believe she said that!

I have survived yet another day of training.  I had a very negative attitude going in, but this training has been better than I had expected.  It's not fabulous, but I am learning things I can use in the classroom next year and be able to hopefully be more effective at teaching math. 

We have spent a lot of time going through the standards.  I know the standards, but we looked at what is actually required for the kids to know and it's a lot less than what we teach them.  The Key Standards are the biggies that they are tested on, yet we spend an insane amount of time on the crap that isn't Key, but that our district pushes.  Money is the perfect example.  The standard is basically know the value of the coins and know how to make different combo's to show the amount.  So, 20 cents would be 2 dimes, 4 nickels, 20 pennies, etc.  But, the kids are tested on counting different coins together and finding the amounts.  THAT'S NOT THE STANDARD!!!!!!  But, we drill and kill because that's what's expected, and if we get poor test scores, then we are in deep doo-doo! 

I wish the district admins were there listening to this.  They have had to sit through the trainings, too, but whether they really learned anything?  Who knows.  I know we have another meeting next week to work on the lovely benchmark tests, so hopefully someone will bring it up and can change it! 

I now know that for next year, there are some changes I want to make.  But, I will need to sit down, carefully read through things and make the best plan for teaching my kids.  Math hasn't been my strong suit, so I want to be better.  One of my many goals for next year! 

I have to vent for a bit about something that happened today.  I am at the training with the Ice Queen from my site.  Yesterday I sat by her (which she didn't like).  Today she came a bit later than I.  She sat at the same table, but not by me.  She won't talk to me if she doesn't have to.  Actually, the only time she spoke to me today was to argue over something that I was right about!  Ha!  Anyway, we were in the middle of something or a break and she was talking to the teacher next to me who is at another site.  The Ice Queen was telling this teacher (who didn't know we taught together) that her grade level doesn't get along, no one will work with her and that there are lots of problems, of which all started from before she got there (she's been there for 8 years, I have been there for 3).  She says that she wants to work as a grade level, but no one is willing to do anything with her.  I wanted to scream that she was a lying bitch, but I didn't say a word, just looked at the person next to me and kept listening.  I was so mad that she would say these things.  She is the one who will NOT work with us.  She hasn't shared one single idea in three years and doesn't want to listen to what anyone has to say.  She can't input any ideas or thoughts, unless it benefits her and her only.  I really don't like working with her and wish she would go elsewhere.  But, sadly, no other grade level wants her.  She has burned her bridges in other grade levels and has made enemies everywhere she goes.  And it's everyone else's problem?  Hmmmm!

I have put in to be grade level leader.  She has also put in.  She was it 2 years ago and couldn't be bothered to share anything with us from meetings, couldn't run a grade level meeting and didn't want to have to do it.  She always had the principal run the meetings since she was "still new" and "didn't know what to do".  Our grade level is just finally starting to slowly come together.  If she was lead, I would quit talking.  There is no getting her to see the other side of anything, even if it's the same thing she believes in!  If the teacher who is chair still wanted to do it, I would be happy.  I'll be happy only if the Ice Queen doesn't get it.  And, rumor is, the other grade level chairs don't want her either and the principal is having to cross her t's and dot her i's to make sure this teacher doesn't file a greivance if she isn't selected as chair.  Why must we work with 4 year olds?  Wait, my daughter is more easy going than this teacher!

Well, just one more day of training and then it's back to reality.  I will only have 12 more days of teaching assessing left before the end of the year.  I will be glad when it's done and I can rest, relax, revamp and reorganize!  Yep, that's my summer vacation in a nutshell!

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