>I keep swinging back and forth between feeling utterly bewildered and terrified and feeling very competent, capable, and prepared. I suppose the reality is somewhere in the middle. I do have my lessons planned (and planned well, at least in my completely biased opinion) and I am a bit more familiar with some of the logistical things like e-mail and the building itself than some of the later hires. (On the other hand, I don’t even have my own keys yet!)
>New Year’s Eve
But I haven’t met any students, which is the most critical thing to me, and it’s challenging to strike a balance between preparing myself mentally and overwhelming myself with expectations that may or may not be realized. I got a bit emotional during our district “pep rally” (for lack of a better word) this morning when the superintendent started talking about impacting kids’ lives, and also when some of the cheerleaders, band members, and football players came up. (When the quartet sang, “You Raise Me Up,” I just about died.) In the last few months when I’ve been out of the classroom, I kind of forgot what it was like having real live students at the center of my life, and to get a taste of that again was a little overwhelming, but in a good way.
I’m proud of myself for stopping at 4:00 and saying, “I have everything I need for tomorrow, so I’m choosing to be done now. I’ll take a break, work a little more at home, and then take the rest of the night off.” While it would be nice to finish everything at school and not have to worry about it later, I’m finding that my attention span and energy level is just not enough to power me through for that long. So I’ll do what I need to do to unwind and refocus and hopefully be more productive that way.
Well, this concludes my pre-service life…next time I write, I’ll be…a REAL teacher???