I offer one day after school for "free tutoring or studio time" so all of the parents and kids know that I'll be in the room till 4:30 on that day. I often have groups come in just to draw and there is also no real excuse for not turning in work because time was given to them. My colleagues think this is stupid "because it's not in our contract to do that", but I think this time is extremely worthwhile and ignore them. I get to know my kids in a different light. I let them bring in a small snack, turn on the radio and get to work. They are comfortable and when they come into class they seem to want to work harder.
Bunki Kramer <email@example.com> wrote:
from: Bunki Kramer (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Los Cerros Middle School
968 Blemer Road
Danville, CA 94526
I don't know Bunki,
I only got to three projects a quarter (10 weeks). Kids being absent, lesson, concerts, plays, yada ya)
Maybe I'm giving them too much time to complete projects.
mike sacco ---
Hi, Mike. Thanks for responding quickly. I was hoping you weren't taking something I said incorrectly. After sending it, I re-read it and it sounded "snippy" and it wasn't intended as such. I was frustrated because I didn't know how to answer that question. I know that first teaching year it's hard to tackle EVERYTHING! at once.
I have the same above problems as you do...like it's stacked against us. Absence we can't do anything about but I do have it posted in my first-day policy handout which parent and child sign stating they are responsible to have finished work in on time and state the times I'm available to help them catch up...early in the morn or lunchtime. Sometimes I'll let individuals slip in during other classes to work alone. Most DO care about finishing the projects though not ALL.
Maybe it would be a goal this year to set completion days for them somewhat tighter. Try it. When you see most of the kids getting near a finishing point, give all a day or two more and call it quits. There will be laggers whatEVER amout of time you give them. Set the tone for the general masses to finish. Set a tight ship when you know you have only a few days at sea...so to speak.
I'm through tonight sounding like a "know it all". Sweet dreams. Toodles....Bunki
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