Sunday, June 28, 2009

Delving into the past, part 100

I realized yesterday that the THIRD anniversary of SILVER 7 AmeriCorps*NCCC Class XIII is quickly approaching, and to honor that I got out my journal from July 2006 and began looking at all the entries from that first week on campus. Oh how far I've come as a human being at the mere age of 27. (I was only 24 then, after all!) But seriously. It's my own cringe series, thanks Tigi. Enjoy!

This entry is from a journal I started on July 11, 2006, my beginning of my AmeriCorps*NCCC adventure. The idea in reliving it is to look at old patterns of anxiety, depression, and panic attacks (since this program is where I learned of my struggle with all three) and to see how far I've come since then and determine where I need to go from there.

11:05 pm

I'm here. Nothing very exciting yet though apparently I'm so tired I can't even get the right endings on my verbs. (I crossed off exited before writing exciting.) My room looks like college part II, though I think these rooms are in slightly worse condition than Creswell Hall's if that's at all possible. Ha! My roommate hasn't actually shown up yet, so for tonight I have the room entirely to myself. Which is nice. I had a nice time unpacking and fixing things while listening to music on my mp3 player. Its sort of like summer camp. I met my team leader, and she seems sweet and smart. A bit on the energetic side, but I guess that's what one wants in a team leader. My feet HURT from the day. I wore my cheap flats with my skirt, and they absolutely tore my feet apart entirely, so for the first couple of hours I'm here I was kinda glazed over.

I'm also trying to remember to take this experience ONE day at a time and not get ahead of myself or worry about events too far in advance. I introduced myself to my team today as OCD and organized. And then later in the meeting someone asked for the address and I just shot it out. Some guy on the team said "we're giving everything to her to remember from now on." (Or something to that effect, which made me feel good that my neurotic tendencies might actually be put to good use and appreciated here. Maybe.

Flight here was delayed, so we didn't actually get here until 6:30ish, giving us enough time to throw luggage in room and grab a PB&J for dinner and get on to meetings. Met several nice folks at the airport, but I haven't actually seen them since stepping off the van. Tomorrow's a long day of intro stuff, and I'm really tired and would like to read my magazine before drifting off to sleep, so I think I will sign off and revisit feelings tomorrow, whenever. (I'm loving this new journal, it actually has lines!) And while I am aware that I still have some of my sketchbook to finish off, I'll be doing most of my WRITING writing in here for obvious reasons. I maybe flipping back and forth between the two out of guilt and a OCD need to finish one journal before starting another.

Is it too soon to tell if I'm the loner yet? I have such loner tendencies, I don't want them, but I fear I'm going to develop them and fall into the same patterns I'm used to. Must remember to take life one day at a time. Indeed. Signing off for the night! Good night! :)

Is that not the most pathetic piece of writing you've ever read?

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

My co-workers know me too well...

At a ceremony at work earlier today, co-workers donated this book to the school's library in my honor, mostly because it seemed like something I'd like. I think I showed my true colors a little too well this year. I am Emily Dickinson. Introspective. Intelligent. Lover of words. Composer of poems. Lifelong learner of poems. Alone. That's perfectly fine by me. I'm glad I'm so transparent.

Reading Teacher Interviews (continued...)

And to be quite honest, they probably will continue for all of the summer...

I interviewed with my current school district for the Middle School Reading Teacher position and was asked the following questions:

1. Tell us why you are a good candidate for this position.

2. Describe the characteristics of an effective Middle School Reading Teacher (Coach.)

3. How have you been able to raise achievement in your classroom, grade level, or school?

4. What kind of assessments would you use to guide reading instruction?

5. Explain the role of talk in comprehension.

6. What strategies would be important in getting adolescent struggling readers engaged in reading? How do you get adolescent, reluctant readers hooked on books?

7. How would you collaborate with content teachers to help them get struggling readers be successful with text in their classrooms?

8. Tell about a time you have worked effectively with a resistant staff member or colleague?

9. What would you expect to see in a building as evidence that the school was moving toward an anti-racist model of education?

Do you have any questions for us?

I passed the screening interview, by some grace of God. How would you answer the following questions?

Update: I had my first school interview at Northeast Middle School today. I think I did relatively well. I am aware there are tons of thousands of candidates for this position out there. It sounds like my dream teaching position. 15-20 students on the caseload, lots of support, and total freedom to explore the curriculum. Nothing but reading instruction. If I don't get the position, there will be plenty of others, I'm keeping my attitude positive at this point. There will be other positions. I just need to start proving to myself that I am worthy of one of them!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Where it all began with Punky Brewster

You know the story. Man abandons daughter. Daughter is ruthless. Daughter meets dog and landlord. And the rest is history. I *heart* YouTube for this reason alone. Good deal.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Shiny New Adult Life

New apartment
New job (almost)
New roommate
New city (suburb really)
New bed

Summer is here
What am I still doing in Minnesota?
That's exactly what I'm doing
Finding my calling
Teaching (or trying to)

The weather here is gorgeous here, really
You should join me!
I should spend more time outside
I had the afternoon off and didn't know what to do with it
So I took a nap
And watched Designing Women, and Sex and the City, and Mad about You
And then read a girly novel
And listened to my iPod
It was wonderful

It's my shiny new adult life
What do you do with your time?