So I'm back and not blogging much.... time to change that.
How did it feel to come back for a second year? The past two weeks I've been feeling something like this: one part excitement, one part dread, one part anxiety, three parts fortitude, two parts optimism, and one big part hope. So mostly- a whole lot of parts and no real consensus.
Things on the rez and in St. Francis seem about the same so far. In-service is still long and frustrating. But at least we don't have to move stuff into a new building! I was happy and comforted to see the school and be greeted warmly by teachers and staff I've grown to know and like. I've even seen some of my students around- a few are working for the school, two asked me if I was teaching any classes they could take this year! One even asked if she could get into my room to borrow a book :) The TFA SoDak corps is still wonderful and I have been even more comforted and excited to see all the great friends I have here.
Some things have changed. My boyfriend is 600 miles farther away. I've moved into my own (huge!) trailer. There are four new TFA teachers at St. Francis and twenty some new corps members around SD- soon to be new friends. I know a whole lot more about teaching- which I realize even more when I talk to new corps members who haven't had their own classroom yet! I have actually created a long term plan and Big Goal that are useful and will drive my instruction this year, so there should be less floundering and more learning in 9th Grade English this time around.
I have to share my appreciation to the Minnesota Writing Project Summer Institute, which has a lot to do with my new confidence as a teacher and excitement about teaching writing this year. Already everything I learned and pondered in class is spilling over into my planning and I'm looking forward to utilizing new skills and knowledge in my classroom. I feel like I will have an extra team of the 24 experienced teachers I was in class with standing behind me, supporting me, and guiding me in my teaching this year. Not literally of course, but their ideas, demonstrations, recommendations, uplifting comments, and advice are all with me as I head into this year. Thank you to any of them who may be reading this!
We have three more days of in-service this week which will be filled with testing data. I'll be spending a couple late nights at the school I think to set up my room. We have five days off over next weekend for the Rosebud Fair and then we start school on the the 26th. Gulp. I have a lot to do. Unit plans, assessments, syllabi, parent letters, management plans.... Here we go again!