A good start to the school day

Updated: Feb 19, 2019

Us teachers and those who support us work hard. Like, really hard. On top of the work we do for school, we have other stressors in our regular life. Some of these are good, some can pile on and become overwhelming.

Today started off as one of those days. Yesterday was difficult due to a complication outside of work. This morning I woke up with the situation still floating around in my head, having imaginary conversations to the people involved. That's normal right...?

Well, I got to school and, as always, maintained to myself that I would not let this thing bother me. Some times it is more difficult than other times. On top of this idea that I might unconsciously let it bother me, I was nervous about my first class because I hadn't planned it the day before. I only had a few minutes to plan the class before my year 9s walked in.

The bell rang.

The students started arriving.

The work hadn't finished printing.

And then I stepped up to the plate.

We recapped last period (which was a while ago!). We went through the idea of GEMS (or as you probably know it, BEDMAS). We went through some on-the-fly examples.

Then I wondered, out loud, whether I should continue going through an example on the now-printed worksheet or let them struggle.

The voices of the students came out

"STRUGGLE" "Let us struggle!"

I was amazed!

And so, I handed out the worksheet with no information except the information at the top. They got to work, and every single group was working exceptionally well.

Throughout the entire period, there was arguing and discussing and getting things wrong and trying to convince each other and other groups about their ideas.

It was incredible!

Halfway through the period, another teacher walked in and commented on how lively it was. He walked around the room observing the students and their work, and observed how I explained the concept to a student who wasn't as up to speed as some others.

I had forgotten to congratulate the students on what an amazing job they did and how proud I was of them. That will be the first thing I address in tomorrow's lesson.

A big shout-out to YouCubed for saving my butt with a ready-made worksheet. I wasn't expecting it to turn out so well, and even better - there's enough content in the two pages that we can continue it tomorrow. Hopefully it goes just as well!

Oh! One more thing! At the start of the lesson, I had a student come to me and tell me she didn't do her homework because of no wifi this weekend. Instead, she looked up facts about the Earth and calculated things like the amount of fresh versus sea water as a percentage.

These kids are impressive.

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