A day in sixth grade…linking up to other classrooms

I’m linking up with Katie Klohn’s “A Day in My Shoes”..so here it is…as of yesterday

5:00 up and out with the dog for a walk around the block.

5:45 – 7:00 Running around like mad getting ready, doing the 101 things necessary to get my family up and organized for the day – lunch, dinner, dog and house all sorted out as best as I can.

7:10 – 7:40 In my classroom!  We are doing a unit on photo essays in our writing workshop classes, so I post the minilesson on the easel, organize the mentor text pieces I want to share and line up access to the media center for our workshop use.  I respond to emails and chat with a steady stream of sixth graders – some with questions, some with issues and some who just want to yak.

7:40 – 8:30 Redo our historical fiction charts to reflect our last conversations.
Prepare for an IEP meeting later in the day. Read and comment on 15  Reading Journals – one student just finished “The Count of Monte Cristo”, and his response was five pages long!!!
8:30 – 11:03  Morning Block begins – we start with Writing Workshop: first with a mini lesson  and then my kids begin working on their photo essays while I circulate and confer. Writing Workshop ends and we segue into Social Studies. We are preparing for a unit test, so we spend the period creating a study guide together.  Finally, it’s time for Language Arts, we review vocabulary homework and then grammar.  My kids are not too fond of grammar, so we break it up with parts of speech stations and sentence smackdown…keep them moving, keep them awake!  With the half hour left, we return to our read aloud: “The Boy in the Striped Pajamas.” The bell rings and out they go calling goodbyes.  
11:03 – 12:10 IEP  meeting. We don’t seem to get much resolved, and I can tell that the parents are not happy.  The legal hurdles it takes to get a 504 are always daunting – especially when Federal dollars are few.
12:15 – 12:40 Lunch!!!  I could hear my tummy rumbling all through the meeting…I could hear my bowl of “Amy’s Brown Rice and Steamed Vegetables” whispering sweet nothings all the way from my classroom all meeting long – so I devour my lunch quite happily.  This is also a great time to read the progressive news blogs online and catch up on teaching blogs.  I’m halfway through an interesting piece of news when the bell rings and in they come….
12:40 – 3:05 Afternoon block. We repeat the morning schedule, but my kids have a surprise. It had been my birthday the day before and the cat got out of the bag – so, a plot had been hatched unbeknownst to me.  Two students asked to leave during Language Arts – they needed to see their Home Ec teacher.  Not happy in the least about this, I let them go…but frowns turn to smiles as they return bearing the fruits of their Home Ec project – just-baked apple-cinnamon muffins! YUM!!! We pause to munch and glory in this unexpected but so welcome treat…and then it’s back to work.
3:05  The bell rings…dismissal!!!  We’re having a Junior Honor’s Society meeting in my room – and hyper active sixth grade bodies give way to slouching, cool-as-cucumber eight graders.  Meeting over, I turn to two students there for extra help and begin reviewing for the Social Studies test. 
4:00  Race home to walk and feed the dog.  She makes a new friend and finds a new place to pee and a perfect stick to chase. All is well again in Sophie’s world!
4:30 – 8:30  Pick up my daughter from the high school and commence the schelepping – music lesson, chiropractor, grocery store so we can eat something for dinner. Run home and get dinner in the oven and then off schlepping again – SAT tutor, a-forgot-something-at-school run.
8:30 – 10:00(ish) Dinner, a load of laundry, then harrass my daughter into cleaning the hovel that is her room.  I watch the news with my husband, and settle into catching up with emails while he practices guitar – nice!he’s getting so much better!! 
10:00 – 12:45 Log onto to the school portal and begin commenting on my students’ “Slice of Life” entries for the week.  I tweak a lesson, finish a chapter of the professional development book I’m reading….and call it a day.

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3 thoughts on “A day in sixth grade…linking up to other classrooms

  1. And you get in your 8 hours of sleep by stretching the time? Wow, what a day; you are almost always 'on', so I must say it's impressive what you do, Tara. Does anyone really realize how much time teachers put in for their careers, and first for the students? Whew-but thanks for sharing!

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