Sunday nights are a whirlwind, but then isn’t everything? My district and, therefore, my school and my oldest children’s high school, have the first of (ouch!) many benchmark writing exams (herein called “interims”) tomorrow. My senior stays home tomorrow because he’ll have to stay in school for 4 periods without a thing to do or learn. My sophomore will receive a grade on said test, probably because the principal feared parents would opt out if it wasn’t a requirement (I think somewhere this should be illegal since no one has seen this test or even knows what it looks like–this, being the first). My 7th grader takes it at my K-8 and I administer it to my homeroom class. All.morning.long. Need I say more? Oh, yes. And then, on Friday, I’m grading it (which is actually good since I will get to see how my students might fare on the 2nd and 3rd and summative, high-stakes one in March after some more days of instruction.
Last night was a whirlwind, that is for sure! I was planning, planning, planning for my “Text Structure” unit. My district posts some great ideas on our newest website, but not really lessons, just 10-15 videos. I have the curriculum I could use, but how do you teach text structure in a week? So, I finally finished deconstructing the standards, but I haven’t come up with the formative assessments for the learning targets for the unit. I definitely have all the wonderful nonfiction books at my disposal, and I’m still trying to gather articles that show different text structures, and, oh yeah, then there’s the anchor charts. Gosh, I love anchor charts, but I can’t do that on Sunday night because my paper and markers are at work. I have yet to get my lesson plans in, although I have a clear idea and a Powerpoint (yay, me for having my Powerpoint done) for the afternoon after the test. Did I mention that I have papers to grade, too, which I never got to.
Yep, Sunday nights are a whirlwind? We have family in town and <sigh> it’s one of those complicated things–you know, to visit because someone is upset (and has been for about 20 years), and it doesn’t really matter that it’s not my side of the family to get all these things arranged <laughing nervously> because, well, I have the same situation on my side of family. Anyway, it is good to see kin, even if it is weird that no one wants to eat or has time to eat and I’m sitting at the diningroom table typing Powerpoints and power notes for the afternoon assignment.
And so, last night was a whirlwind and my last thoughts as I went to bed (after I insisted on reading 50 pages or so in Wonder, which made me cry and cry and cry at one particularly touching part from the perspective of Via). I must write. I need to get these ideas and characters swirling in my head onto paper (or rather, the computer, because I don’t really write on paper anymore). There’s Sun Trolls begging to be finished, and my newest character, Osa, talking and doing things in my head. There’s that NCTE position paper I would love to research and finish, the letter to school board over the long hours I put in and the impossibilities of this year (will I look like a whiner?) that must not be impossibilities since I am working all the time to make possibilities, and finally, the lesson plans and unit plans (I hope I get to use them next year, but they may switch me).
Finally, the whirlwind went to sleep.