Thursday, May 28, 2009

Can I Rewind?!?!

Tomorrow is the last day of school with kiddos, so today we took final exams in the odd hours.

First hour goes by smoothly, I'm on plan so not much to do there... renew my teaching certificate online (only took 1 phone call to the state department to figure it out!), run a test over to in-house, visit with our district director for AVID, make copies, etc. All the makings of a good day :)

Third hour comes and I get the kiddos started on their test, all is fine. After their test, they say it's pretty easy. Repeat this for fifth hour.

After school, the "sh*t hits the fan" so to speak :) I go to the scantron machine to grade my finals around 3:15ish and there's a kid using the copy machine. I tell her she's not supposed to be using it, only teachers. Because I got sidetracked, I go off and leave the answer keys to the final on the scantron machine. I don't notice this until about 30 minutes later - OMG, adrenline starts pumping, I'm freaking out. I run over to the teacher workroom, they aren't there.. holy crap! I am going to have to go home and write new finals for geometry and go to Kinkos to make copies for all of the other Geometry teachers (common finals) - total freakout!

I go to the principal's office, afraid to tell many people what I've done. I'm a veteran teacher, pretty respected most days, and for me to lose a final is not the norm at all. I can't find the secretary, but instead I find our department curriculm coach (who is retiring) and her replacement. I sit down with them and about to burst into tears - this is SO unlike me to lose anything! The new curriculum person (a teacher I've known for years), goes with me to find the girl that was using the copier and she had already gone, but the teacher she was helping was still there, so we were able to get her phone number. The girl remembered a male teacher going in there and described his clothing. I went back to the office and asked the asst principal to show me the security tapes so I could figure out who it was. After about 30 minutes, we figured it out and the secretary let me into the teacher's room and thankfully he had picked them up and put them in a drawer.

My heart is STILL pounding!!! What a day!!! I want to show all of the helpers a token of appreciation, so I'm grabbing a small giftcard from a popular drink spot to tell then "Thanks for saving my rear today!!"

*Sigh* Calgon - Take me Away!!!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

GRRR - Vent :)

I hate when you have something to say but can't! I have a huge frustration that I would love to write about here, but although I have never said where I teach, etc, this blog just isn't anonymous enough for me to feel comfortable saying what I want to say. DH doesn't truly understand, although he is fully willing to listen, and most of my friends are busy since its a holiday weekend.


Sunday, May 17, 2009

Mad Minutes

I am currently grading an Algebra Review quiz that I gave my Geometry students. It floors me how many students miss problems due to integer arthimetic errors. So I've decided to do "mad minutes" in Alg 2 next year. I don't know how many of you remember Mad Minutes from gradeschool, but I'm bringing them back heheh... Here's a link to an Excel document that creates these... Mr. Beach's Spreadsheet

However, how do I grade them? I guess I need to reach out to some elementary buddies and ask them :) I'm thinking maybe some kind of team competition where the prizes are based on most improved team and highest scoring team per quarter.

Ideas welcome!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Finding time for your family

I struggle sometimes with balance. Sometimes I focus so much on my students and school that I don't focus enough on my friends and family and this has been an ongoing argument for years. We have another couple that we try to go out with at least once a month and this past week, the guys set up a dinner date for us. We went out to eat and then to the new Star Trek film. OMG - what an amazing movie!! In fact, it was so awesome that we are taking MIL and FIL to the movies tonight to see it again for Mother's Day.

It's been such a crazy weekend... twice to the movies, seeing our moms, going to a real "biker" wedding (college roomie got married and her hubby is a biker - talk about a cultural experience!)

On a different note, hubby paid me a high compliment yesterday at my mom's. For the mothers, I made gift baskets of a variety of soaps I made. Hubby had gone to the restroom and later on, he made the comment to my mom about putting the soap in the bathrooms because he's gotten used to using my soap and it was weird to not have it there :) I am still basking in that praise! I assumed he used my soap simply to be nice, not because he really liked it. heheh

Happy Mother's Day to all!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

The APs are coming!!

In just a few short days, the 2009 AP exams will begin. I've done all that I can to help them do well... it's now 100% up to the kiddos.

With that in mind, I've started thinking about what I want to change for next year. As always, it seems like I'm changing more than I'm keeping - I just hope I can find the time over the next few months to get a bunch of changes in place. One goal that I really would like to accomplish is to use more news articles and real data sets in class, so I've spent some time setting up a google reader for stat stuff :)

What changes do you plan to make?