Saturday, May 18, 2019

A Day in the Life #54 In which many things have changed

Also linking up for the Sunday Post at the Caffeinated Reviewer!

I knew I hadn't posted a farewell post or deleted the blog for a reason!  Hello friends and readers who are still around!  It's been a year since my last confession, I have sinned. (Just kidding).  In that year I have lurked on many of your blogs without commenting (deepest apologies), but I've kept adding posts to my weekly round up on the off chance I ever posted one of these again.  But before we get to that...

Last time I posted, I was deeply unhappy with my teaching position (read: being at three different schools, teaching 8 year olds, and having a hugely unsupportive administration and one of the three schools, and a neglectful one at another) and had gone through a major break up.  Since then, I've started dating a really wonderful guy and am teaching in a different school, so all things are looking up!  

I'm teaching orchestra full time at a middle school (which I never would have seen coming in a million years).  They have a very strong music program, a principal who actually majored in music, and middle school is just a MUCH better fit for me age group wise.  (The last part I've always known. I'm too snarky and impatient for elementary school).  I can't tell you how many times my administration has helped support my needs and backed me up in situations my principal at my least favourite elementary school would have blamed me for.  (For one, I had a parent accuse me of losing her child's cello and stealing his bow.  The cello was not lost. Nor was the bow. It's a ridiculous story.)  

The start of the year was CRAZY - my entire cello and half of my bass inventory molded over the summer, which meant I had no instruments for my students.  Which is...kind of a struggle when you teach an instrumental music program. I spent the first month and a half of school driving all over the county during my planning period (instead of planning for any classes/grading) borrowing instruments so that we could start playing.  It was chaotic to say the least.  

It's also a little stressful because I teach 6th and 7th grade world music which is the general music option for students not in band, orchestra, or chorus.  Realistically, it's most frequently the kids with behavioral issues...just in a high concentration.  Most classes have one or two kids who need a little extra support behaviorally, and a few kids who need support because of learning disabilities.  World music classes are more frequently like 4 or 5 kids who will absolutely wreck your class, with about 10 more who need a little extra support behaviorally or for learning disabilities, and then maybe 10 kids who can figure stuff out on their own.  Classroom management in classroom settings is not my strong suit and something I've been working on a lot this year (ie not orchestra - I have no issues with my orchestra classes on that front. But as I've mentioned, classroom style teaching is very different).  Combining a strong need for classroom management with subject matter I've NEVER taught makes things really time consuming on that front, but if there's one thing the previous two years taught me, it's that I can do anything.  If I taught grades 4-12, steel drums, American music, computer music, and exploratory music all within a year with zero background knowledge of how to do so, I can handle a couple world music classes.

So this year has been very work focused since I'm re-learning a whole set of procedures/curriculum/new to the community, etc.  We also put on 2 concerts, take the kids to assessment (where the judges score us and it's a HUGE deal), take the kids to perform at a theme park, and put on a musical.  So to say that the work load has grown is an understatement.  But you know what?  I love it.  I would gladly do this much work because I'm now full time, with full benefits, in a school that supports the arts, with an administration that has an understanding of music.  My coworkers are AMAZING and have helped me so much throughout the year.  I really missed the sense of community you get last year because I was never at a school long enough to get to know anyone really other than the music teachers. still somewhat true at my school, but it's different.  We do everything together, because we do so much work together before and after school.  I am so much happier than I was a year ago. No more finding out about concerts an hour before they happen, or being told you should get a 5th grader to conduct the concert because they moved the date of the concert last minute and it conflicts with one of your other school's concerts.  Life is good, people.

In old news now, Margaret Atwood announced a sequel to The Handmaid's Tale.
Vera and Clare recommend unique books.
James McAvoy and Ruth Wilson Join BBC’s His Dark Materials Drama Series.
Clare lists Movie Adaptations Better Than Their Books.

Veronika wants to know can a ship ruin a book?
Greg discusses monarchy in fantasy.
La La always has good round ups/news/general interesting life/useful reminders (she always reminds me about Sync which you should check out!)

Rachel says Michael Schur (Parks and Rec, Brooklyn 99, The Good Place, The Office) has the most relatable characters.
Halsey Speaks on the Feeling of Having to Validate Your Bisexuality.


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    I'm soooooooooooo happy for you!🙌🙌🙌🙌🙌🙌🙌🙌🙌🙌🙌🙌

    Did I miss seeing the new guy on Facebook? 🤔

    Does this mean you are going to blog every now and then? 😀

    1. There's been a few pictures of us from the past summer, I usually keep it pretty low key on Facebook though! (And he's also Korean so it may not have been immediately apparent that he's not one of the other Korean dudes I'm friends with)

      Hopefully! I'm not making any promises/pressure on myself but it felt pretty good to make a post 😊

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  2. I saw this pop up on my blogroll- glad to see you back! :) And glad things are looking up! A school district that supports the arts is HUGE. The local one here does too and the music program is really strong, so I was nodding my head at your comments about the support you get now, and working closely w/ the other instructors. that's awesome.

    I have so much respect too for how much goes into putting on all the shows and whatnot.

    Anyway glad things are going well! and thanks for the shout outs. :)

    1. Yeah it's night and day and it is WONDERFUL. Honestly speaking if I'd had to teach in that situation again, I probably would have quit. I don't have the level of gumption needed to stick out that situation haha.

      Of course! I have tried to at least lurk about the past year haha

  3. YAY!! Happy day!! I'm glad to see things are going much better on the job front. I started working at an elementary school and reading about what you went through last year gives me a panic attack.

    1. I saw! I've loved your Facebook posts about it haha! And yeah here's a metaphorical glass to neither of us EVER having to go through what I went through last year. It sounds like you are really enjoying it though! Are you at Kaylee's school?

  4. Teaching is definitely a vocation rather than a career choice and I'm glad you have the support of the administration now.

    Hope you have a good week and enjoy your reads (when you get the chance) ;-)

    1. Yeah - vocation or not, I don't think I love teaching enough to have gone through another year of what I went through last year. So I'm doubly happy I made it to this school because I might not have continued teaching at all!

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