18 October 2013

just call me shawn johnson

...because flexibility is the only way you can survive in the nutso world of special education. That is my golden line from my first nine weeks of teaching.

So far, I've been bitten, kicked, scratched, hugged, kissed, and complimented. I've taught math, science, social studies, reading, and writing to students in pre-k, kinder, third grade, fourth grade, and fifth grade in at least five different classrooms. Students have shut me out, and students have cried and bared their soul to me. Teachers have cornered me in the copy room to holler at me, and teachers have come to my room just to see how I'm holding up.

In this tiny, precious, rural district, I've attended multiple pep rallies that shut down the town, ridden on a homecoming float that had a tank with real smoke coming out of it, sprayed a real fire hose on Fire Safety Day, and participated in Ag Day (where the school shut down to have the kids go around stations set up on the playground and blacktop and learn about sheep, pigs, goats, sheep, rabbits, roping, and cotton).

I've tried system after system, procedure after procedure. In a world that deserves consistency, I've had to miss over full 10 days of school and one of my 5 paras quit unexpectedly. I've rearranged my classrooms at least twice each, I walk an average of 2 miles a day at work (shout out to my girl, Al, for the pedometer!), and I literally only know what is going on about 20% of the time. I've come to the harsh realization that I'm NOT the best person for the job, but I am the ONLY person for the job right now... And all I can do is try my best.

This life is crazy. No day is the same. Somedays I cry all the way home and threaten to take away our DINK* staus, and somedays I jabber about how proud I am of my kids for coloring in the lines. But I love it. I really do. I am so incredibly convinced that the Big Man has me here for a reason.

Stay tuned for more specific details on:

  • iPad testing for oral admin
  • managing a staff
  • multi-use classrooms
  • relationships with general education teachers
  • how I plan

*Dual Income, No Kids