Thursday, August 30, 2012

Orientation Days

The last weeks of summer flew by and so did Orientation Days at school! I have to say that this year if the first year that I haven't been totally excited to go back to school and after talking with friends at school many of us are in the same boat - it has a lot to do with the past, hopefully we can all move forward and make this year AMAZING!

I can already see some positive changes with our new Vice Principal, while I miss Mr. C, the new Mr. C is awesome. Very positive, upbeat, and upfront. What you see if what you get and I think the kids will respond to it. Yesterday we had the freshman and today the sophomores and juniors came in for a half day - just seeing how he interacted with them improved my mood - however, not to the point where I'm jumping for joy (yet!).

All I've really done with classes is hand out my syllabus, take roll, and chat a bit - during orientation days they only run their through schedule for about 45 minutes meeting with each class for about 5-7 minutes. Not that useful but enough to get some annoying things out of the way.

Each year students and parents have to fill out the Academic Honesty sheet (no cheating, plagiarism, lying etc.) and I usually have parents fill out contact information as well - this year I decided to use Google Forms to do this. I also added in a question "What should I know about your student that would help me teach them better." Not many parents have filled it all out yet, but those who have, have offered some amazing insight to their child. Such as seating arrangement help, behavioral issues and how to deal with them - amaze what parents will offer to teachers they have never met! I LOVE IT!

I'm planning on asking students the same question on the first real day I have with them. For the freshmen this actually won't be until NEXT FRIDAY! How crazy is that, with technology training (with our IT person), the summer reading test and review, I am giving up 3 full days next week for them to do non-history "things".

I was nervous about my sophomores this year, with a few issues that happened last year, I was curious, nervous, and interested to see what the relationship and reaction would be. Thankfully it is like we picked up right where we left off. We'll see how long this lasts - they are sophomores! A few of them were very happy about the late work policy being lifted and were curious as to why - I left them with the cliffhanger that they'd find out Tuesday. Woohoo FlipClass!

Hopefully tomorrow with my senior homeroom goes just as smoothly!

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