Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
Jan 19 2007

The semester is over!

It is Friday, the end of the semester. My grades are almost completed and I’ve even started some planning for next semester. I’m in a foul mood right now because I was unproductive today during tests. Because the district-created algebra test was so difficult, I had major behavior problems. Students gave up, finished early and became loud and disruptive. I actually yelled at my algebra boys in a way I never really had before. I told them that they were ridiculous; I was actually really angry.
B*** the frequent trouble maker was just sitting in the back laughing at me and that is when I realized that they didn’t care at all that I was lividly angry and that I should just shut up.
A ton of students stopped by after school to give me make-up work and I refused to take it. I don’t know if I pissed some of them off but I told them that last week was the deadline and I stayed until 7:30 last night finishing grades and I wasn’t about to start the process over again. I’m sure that for most of them it wouldn’t have mattered. It was clearly partly my mistake because so many of them didn’t have it.
I had to have a talk with another girl about letting people cheat off of her; I actually let her turn in some work because she had been absent so many times. Her grade ended up at 89 percent and I didn’t change it over to an A because I already felt guilty enough for accepting her late work.
My goodness. Now I have some students in my room, one who keeps asking for extra work but never actually shows up to do it. Now it’s Friday, grades have been entered and I very rudely told her how nice I was being to her and that it was way to late to have a significant change in her grade. If she cares so much, I just wish she’d do things in class.

Now I’m just ranting which will probably get old to read. In better news, I have all sorts of plans for second semester that I’m really excited about. I hope that things run much more smoothly, that I can follow through on all my plans and that student achievement will change. I’m dreading running the scantron on my algebra tests; we know that won’t be fabulous since the test was so hard. Maybe someone will surprise me.

2 Responses

  1. isn’t it weird about the surprises when you run the scantrons? there’s always at least one or two and you’re sort of giddy about.

    oh my god. i just got excited about scantrons.

  2. Ms. Math

    This post makes me feel the anger again about that stupid algebra test. On one hand, I see why the district wanted to pass out a test that was rigorous and on grade level.

    On the other hand, to set the bar way beyond what my students and I could possibly achieve, practically ensures a disaster class situation like the one we ended up in.

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Learning more about life than math…

Las Vegas Valley
High School

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