Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Money & Phone Calls

Today, I had another first happen. I gave my students a book order yesterday. I usually give them about 2 weeks to turn in an order because of pay days and such. Today I had a student bring in money for a book order. $27 in quarters and $8 in bills. I got a huge kick out of it. In my inner city district I always let my kiddos pay cash if they want because many parents don't use checks. I always emphasize providing "exact change" because I don't want to have to make change for them...and I laughed that this could be viewed as a very literal interpretation of that phrase!

I had to make my first negative parent phone call today. I hate doing it honestly but this kiddo just needs to realize that I'm not playing his game. He can be pissy and hate me all he wants. Life will still go on for me. So I call Dad during recess with this child sitting right there. I had to leave a message. Then the kid goes "great, now I'm going to get in big trouble." I was just kind of thinking "um, HELLO kid, 5th grader! This is not new behavior for you -- if you don't like getting in trouble, straighten up!"

He reminds me SO much of one of my kiddos from last year. He'll come around when he realizes he will lose EVERY SINGLE PRIVILEGE until he shapes up. It's just how I roll. And 99% of the time, it works wonders. They hate losing out on stuff.

Mrs. Cooperating Teacher and Mr. 4/5 Split told me today that I need to get out of our district while I'm still young...just because they've both been there 25+ years and realize how much MORE the district asks us to do with so little resources. I told Mr. 4/5 Split that if there had been a full-time position in my home district posted this year, I would've went after it in a heartbeat...but I don't want something part-time and that's what had been available (or stuff out of my certification area). Mrs. Cooperating Teacher even said that while she knows I love the kids, for my own sanity and well being, getting out now would be the smartest thing to do. And I know she is absolutely right. Our district is known for not honoring the loyalty of many of these the teachers/principals who give decades of service to the district. It's such a crock.

At this point, I'm happy to be where I am, but I am keeping my eyes peeled. If a fab opportunity presents itself to go elsewhere, I will jump on it.

I'm pretty happy with myself that I left work today at 4 with only my positive notes pad....it's the first time I've left before 4:45 since school started, and I've always brought home work.


  1. I feel like, as teachers, we could stay in our classrooms from dawn till midnight every single day and still not get everything done that we wanted/needed to get done. The thing that saved me during my first 2 years of teaching was to leave at 5 whether I felt done or not -- and never to bring work home! It was hard but I felt I had my sanity :)

  2. What is your positive notes pad? Sounds interesting! haha

  3. @Sarah -- I usually don't like taking work home and in the past have made it a policy not to do so unless it is absolutely necessary. For the 1st couple of weeks of school, until things get more into a rhythm, I'm a bit more tolerant of taking small things home. So far I've done really well with not having to take tons of stuff home :)

    @Kelly -- I got them at our local teacher store. I love them because they are carbon copy notes so I have instant documentation of parent contacts (see them here