I've been wanting to blog for a while and haven't set out time to do it. I have a lot on my mind in regards to my classroom and what's going on, so I'm not sure what this post will look like in the end.
What I can say for sure right now is that I'm a first year classroom teacher who is in survival mode. I remember reading about these different modes from the book "The First Days of School" by Harry K. Wong and Rosemary T. Wong, and survival mode definitely sounds like me. I am really struggling with classroom management, and every day I'm just trying to get through it. It sucks a lot because I really love to teach and I want so badly to be good at it, but management does not come naturally to me.
I read all the time about how some teachers are naturally good at it but most of us have to work at it to improve. I'm constantly working and pushing myself to try different strategies, and some things work but others do not. I'm just so frustrated right now because I'm really unhappy with the behaviors in my classroom, and I feel at a loss for how I can really change them.
I have a tendency to complain about the behaviors they exhibit that I really don't like, but I don't want to get caught up in all that here. I do it enough at work and am trying to quit. The funny thing is that I really love most of my students. I'll admit there are a couple who work my nerves on the daily and it's taking me a bit longer to warm up to them. And it's those kids who are causing the majority of the behavior problems in my classroom, which are trickling down to the rest of the class. But someone told me to be curious about them, and really get to know and figure out why they behave the way they do. So I'm working on that relationship building. I've already eaten lunch with all of my students at least once (in small groups), and now I'm eating with each child one-on-one.
I'm trying to keep believing that things will get better, but I'm also realistic and as we get closer to November, I'm starting to accept the fact that this is who they are and there is only so much I can say and do to build character in them. This may be the reality of what my classroom is like all year.
I will continue to gather strategies from everywhere: other people, books, observations, etc. I will continue to hope it will get better, but I don't want to set myself up for disappointment either. Hopefully, I will be able to make more time to blog about specific issues and continue to reflect on my role in the class and what dynamic I bring to the culture that I have created. Because one thing I will not do is place all the blame on them....I recognize I play a big part in this too and I've started to ask myself what I'm doing wrong, since at the end of the day I'm the only person I can really control.
Anyway, this has all been just some random babblings. I have a lot on my mind and I just needed to get something down on "paper" and out of my heart. I hope my future postings will be more streamlined and focused than this.