And so it begins…


The first job I selected for the fourth district I am now in may still be coming, but the second job was a two-day job for 8th grade language arts.  It was at the school where I know a few of the kids from my church.  As it turns out the school is only about a half mile from my church too.  I noticed on the map that this school was comprised of two buildings: an elementary and a junior high school.  As such, I did not expect to run into them since they are in elementary.  As it turns out, the schools were connected and there is some shared space such as the cafeteria.  I still didn’t run into them on the first day though.  It was actually the second day when I was entering the building that I saw two of them.  They were early because they were doing broadcasting, which is becoming increasingly common in schools these days.  At this school I would guess the elementary and junior high sides share this as well, with the elementary using it in the morning and the junior high in the afternoon during their homeroom.

This day was divided into two-period blocks again, another common thing in junior high/middle school that I did not have when I was in junior high.  Reading and other english classes were separate.  Would you believe I had a dedicated spelling class in 6th grade?  “What class do you have next- math?  Gym?  Social studies?”  “No, I have spelling.”  I don’t even recall what we did all week outside of the pre- and post-tests.  I do remember some of the tests were verbal though, and not a fun game like sparkle either.  There was one time they gave me the word “anxiety” and I mumbled something like “angziety” but when asked to repeat myself louder I changed my answer and got it right- total luck.

The first two blocks were 8th grade as the job description promised.  On Thursday they had a test which followed the daily “caught ya”  sentence correction.  Easy enough for me.  Following that we started an Edger Allan Poe story in their books.  Rather than reading it together there was a CD recording.  Unfortunately this was so soft the room had to be absolutely silent in order to hear the reader.  We only got through a few pages of this.  I tried to play it on the DVD player and see if it came out any louder through the TV than the portable CD player, but oddly enough the DVD player didn’t recognize the CD.  Did it only play DVDs?  First time I’ve ever encountered a DVD player that didn’t play CDs, unless it was just this one for some reason.

The last block was 7th grade.  They started the same way, with a daily sentence and a test.  The same test in fact as eighth grade.  Huh?  She gives the same lesson to both grades?  Well, not in every case as it turns out.  Following the test we did vocabulary and were supposed to do a worksheet on symbolism in poetry afterward, though we ran out of time before finishing the vocabulary.

Between these blocks was the 4th period lunch, starting at 10:07.  I guess I should really say breakfast.  Remember I mentioned the two schools sharing some space?  Well this early lunch was a consequence of that.  I am pleased to say I didn’t truly get a chance to eat until 1:30.  The teacher I was subbing for only had the first and last periods of (not counting homeroom, which follows the last period).  She apparently has lunch duty during 4th.  As the general rule goes, if the teacher has a job (s)he gets paid extra for, the sub doesn’t do it.  If it’s part of the regular duties, the sub has to do it too.  Some schools pay a stipend for lunch duty, some don’t.  This one does, so even though I didn’t get to eat until late I was quite happy because this school is an exception to the rule and gives subs a chance to earn stipend pay in cases like this, so I did! 🙂

The last ten minutes of the day was homeroom.  That’s right, ten minutes.  Well, they had to fit in the broadcast announcements some time, and elementary uses the room at the start of the day, so enter homeroom period.  There is not enough time to work on homework in the last few minutes following announcements, so the kids get to chat.

Friday was similar to Thursday, except the plans were different.  8th grade watched a video, again on Edgar Allan Poe, and 7th grade finally got to work on POEtry (sorry, my bad attempt at a pun) once they finished vocabulary.  Following homeroom, I got a surprise: another student from my church.  He’s in 7th grade now, but when he was in 4th grade I had him on the weekends.  He should have been with me for 5th grade too, except he was allowed to start going to the church’s junior high program for some reason I never fathomed.  Ironic, considering as far as school is concerned this district doesn’t start junior high until 7th grade.  I was going to mention this to his dad since I volunteer with him, but he wasn’t there this weekend.

So, how was your week? 🙂

3 thoughts on “And so it begins…”

  1. OOOHHHH… Poe… which story? I misspelled pajamas in the spelling bee my 6th grade year… p-a-g-a-m-a-s… “ding.” No… we did not have a separate spelling class in jr. high either. Although I did have a science teacher who would discipline an unruly student by making them write the weeks spelling words fifteen times a piece. He had a copy of the spelling books for 6th-8th grade.

  2. The first picture… 😉

    Making you write words from another class just doesn’t seem right. Maybe writing science vocabulary words would have been more appropriate for a science class.

  3. One of my favorites. My brother used to read Poe to me for bedtime stories when I was very young (before first grade). When things went bump in the night, well so did I.

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