Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass- it is about learning to dance in the rain.

Thursday, September 20, 2007


Finally, my classes are beginning to settle down. Today felt successful again. I've had very few of those days this year. But today our core (150-ish students) had their fall reading test to check progress since last spring and give us a baseline for this year's progress. When my Challenge (advance placement) students returned later to my room, they were excited because "Mrs. Huerta, what you've been teaching us was on the test!" They went on to explain that the names of poetic devices like assonance, synecdoche, and allusion were part of the questions. Further, they were delighted that we had just read "The Highwayman" and some excerpts from that poem were on the test, too. And the clincher? "Mrs. Huerta, the test even asked us about Shakespeare and sonnets!" They had been complaining about how hard the work (leading up to reading The Merchant of Venice) has been, but at least now they see a purpose. Several of them reported great gains in reading scores. They're happy; I'm happy!

And even my regular classes (including the difficult one in which I have them right after me, there's nothing like trying to get a group of 30 13-year-olds to actually focus 5 minutes after they've come off a sport field, are sweating like pigs, thirsty as camels, and too tired to bother thinking.) were better today. I've had to do some creative adjusting with seating arrangements and utilizing the resources I have. (Prayer helps too!) Yesterday, I was seriously praying that I could learn to not DISlike some of them....but God always comes through. Within an hour of that prayer, I read a poem that little boy had written and realize that so many of them carry burdens beyond their years. There really is an explanation for what seems like irrational, rude and obstinate behaviors.
What's the "mile in his sandals" Native American proverb?

And...writing with the student doing limericks (trying to get rhythm leading up to Iambic Pentameter and Elizabethan Sonnets), I wrote a limerick too.

There once was a teacher named Phylis,
Who taught language and English at Ellis.
She was tough and quite strict,
and sometimes would kick
Our hinds, but never would kill us!

And with that 8th grade humor, I shall close.

Have a lovely evening! Tomorrow is a new day!



Kyla said...

I am glad things are coming together. The beginning of the year adjustment is always tricky.

And 30 13 year olds? *shudder* LOL. You are a brave lady.

Maggie - Mom of Six said...

30 13-year olds after being outside....I do not envy you! LOL!

Teachers have a very special place in my heart as I am only with them 3-4 hours a week ranging in age from 12-19 and.....well.....let's just say the people blessed with the heart and the ability to do that 5 days a week amaze me!

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