Thinking about the title of this blog, I wonder how I should finish that statement. Should it be “A Day in the Life” of a teacher, department chairman, leader, role model, problem-solver, secretary, data collector, mentor, colleague, mother, student, or friend? I could probably keep adding to the list of jobs that I have throughout the day. The bottom line is that when the 7:45am bell rings, I become the master of multi-tasking.
I begin my day with a quick check of my calendar. How many meetings do I have? Are there any observations today? Do I need to meet with a teacher? Do I have to write the technology column or the leadership column this week? Do I have an after school duty this week? What should be put at the top of my to do list?
After seeing that my week is jam-packed with the usual meetings and responsibilities, I move to my emails. Here is where the multi-tasking begins. An email from the guidance department with a request for a schedule change prompts an email to the teacher of the student. An email from my principal prompts me to start writing my technology column. One of the math teachers emails needing batteries, markers, and index cards, which sends me to OfficeDepot online. Our school secretary sends an email about completing Declaration of Intent forms. Since keeping my job is important, I pause for a minute to submit the form online.
After completing several more email-related tasks, I finally get to my lesson planning, grading, and other tasks on my to do list. But before I can get started, I need to run upstairs to check to see if I have class coverage and to sign in for the day. A little voice in my head yells “Yes!” when I don’t get coverage.
I return to my office and the homeroom bell rings. Every day, one of my students checks in with me at the beginning of homeroom. It has become his routine. I think he has adopted me as his school mom. I need to remember to take the time to stop my work for a few minutes to acknowledge that he needs someone to talk to.
Now, I can finally plan! I grab my textbook, curriculum guide, and flash drive of prior lessons. I have always liked planning lessons. What better way to combine my creativity and love of math than in a lesson. As a review of factoring for Algebra II, I decide to plan an activity modeled after speed dating. The students will sit in two circles facing each other. Each person has a different factoring problem with the answer on the back. He or she will share the problem with his or her partner. After the pairs complete their problems, they will check their answers. After a few minutes, the outside circle will rotate. By the end of the period, the students will have completed fifteen problems, and have worked with fifteen other students.
I print the activities and the bell rings. The activity went well with my classes. The students enjoyed rotating through the problems with different people. I will have to remember this for other topics.