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<< What are some of the
things you all do to keep that energy level up till the last school
bell of the year rings?
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I just finished moving, sending the contents of my house in 6 different
directions, and doing the supply inventory and order for next year. I had to
really get my act together. Here's what I do.
The key for me is to keep myself organized, stay on top of things, so I don't
get overwhelmed. Then I'm not tired from stress. I can be upbeat and keep the
kids in line.
I do detailed lessons for the week on the weekend, with lists and more lists
of everything needed for each class. That way I don't have to deal with it on
I get up very early, arrive at school a couple of hours early, so I'm totally
prepared, and then my day goes smoothly. If I am required to internal sub
during my free period, my baskets and carts for my classes are ready before
the day begins. Then I can handle losing my free period. Otherwise, I am
running, forgetting something, running back, skipping lunch.
I am organizing cabinets, shelves, file boxes and just got two units of 60
letter filing shelves (they look like mailboxes). I'm starting to feel good,
I can file after using something and FIND things. I stress when I can't find
something needed for a class and have to spend valuable time looking or when
everthing piles up on my carts and on the countertops and floor.
Everything I introduce is new media for the kids, so they are enthused: clay,
printmaking, painting, pastels (I laminate the pastels), weaving, stitchery.
I think they worked with more dry materials before I came to the school.
I stay until I'm finished after school, that way I have time for lunch the
following day. I keep current on the grading. In my storeroom, each class has
a labeled drawer where I keep the projects, so I don't lose them.
When a book inspires the artwork, I read the story to the kids, and use the
strategy, #'d heads together with a spinner, to question them during the
reading. For their critique, I put the criteria on the board that students
must use for their comment. I find they ohh and ahh when the student holds up
his project. It beefs up the self esteem. Also, I don't have to bring in
supplies that day.
I have two kids come in to help me during their lunch, my free period, so
they can do bulletin boards, fill paint cup strips, etc.
Now I have to prepare and select the entries for the district art show, the
admin. bldg. display and the state contest, and I'm going to make art awards
on the computer with tie dye paper to distribute at our building assembly.
I have to return all of their artwork and assemble some kind of portfolio
with the kids to take home their work for the year.
I deal with a day at a time. I don't follow a clock on the weekend.