Wednesday, October 19, 2011

It seems that I can’t catch a moment to write in my blog...My class this year is so language impacted that I feel like an ELL teacher. 19 of 20 qualify for services. And most have never been away from momma so they expect that I will feed them at lunch and even help with toileting. Needless to say, I am reworking each of my plans at night..So my own children are getting my Left-Over time. And I cannot tell you how much it grates my nerves. I am doing a great job in my class, but at home, not so much.
Because I never seem to be the mom I want to be, I have set up a family day every weekend. So far we have gone to DC for some Monument Fun with Missi and her tribe, gone on a picnic with my dad, and sister, and new doggie cousin, and gone ice-skating last weekend. (Missi’s kids talked me into going..)
(The pictures are funny because look at the girlz clothes. And the pics were taken 6 days apart. Yes! we have crazy weather)
Family day makes me feel a little less guilty about pouring most of myself into other people’s children. There is a Russian market near the ice skating rink and I had never been, so Missi’s fam and mine went. It was mostly food, a deli of sorts. While there, Anni found these little ring/break stick things that I had given her when she was a baby in Russia. She showed them to me and I burst into tears. Happy Tears of course, but Anni was shaken by that and cried too. I asked her, “Anni why are you crying?” She said, ”It makes me cry when you cry.” I explained that there were tears of joy and then we both laughed at how silly we were acting.. But I am still after all these years so incredibly appreciative of the Russian Federation for my girlz. I’m a sap, I know...

People always say how great it must be to be a teacher, and at times it is. But with the climate in education changing so much, it is getting more and more administrative and less instructional..OK wait, not less instructional. We are actually expected to fit everything into our day. I can’t imagine any teacher getting their work done in the 7.5 hours we work...I am spending at least 3.5 to 4 hours a night reworking lessons, grading papers, planning lessons, making templates, making forms, etc..And I am not alone. No one at my school pulls the 9-4 routine. We simply cannot get our work done.

Most of the problem starts in the homes of our students. I have a class where most of the children are not ready.

As in never used scissors, glue sticks, folded paper, painted, or listened to a story being read to them..Isn’t that almost criminal?
I won’t even tell you the stories of some of the children at my school, but not my class, that have suffered such abuse and neglect that I actually think and pray for these children every day. Life and parenthood is open to anyone. And some families have no business parenting. Can you imagine just letting a child come to school knowing there is no lunch money? Can you imagine sending a child to school knowing that you have done none of the work to prepare your child?
I cannot. But it is me that faces those children everyday. And I struggle with the fact that I give them the best of myself it seems. Cause what’s left at night, ain’t great...And I am sad about how to manage both..
My girlz are thriving. My DC bestie, Missi and I chat about how different our kids are from each other. Her family has been go go go since they were babies, and we tried that last year and it was awful...As much as I’d love my girlz to be on the Russian STAT swimming team, our lil’ family can’t manage being out and about each night.

We still do dance and AugustRose is on the STAT preteam, but our combined days out are 3 days. And we are home before dark on those days..My girlz are outside/yard kids. They love to play make believe and walk the neighborhood dogs, and go on adventures in the creek..Traditional kids stuff..And Hey, I didn’t want to be on the road every night.

We are back to doing our traditional Thanksgiving Trip to NYC. We will meet up with Aunt Lee and AlleeKat while there. We have gone every year except last year, and the year that we were in Russia for our court trip to finalize AugustRose’s adoption. By the way, her Gotcha day is Thanksgiving Day. How sweet is that?
This year, along with going to the Macy’s Parade, we are heading to Hoboken to see the Cake Bosses' Bakery. We know we might not meet him, but we get to see his bakery, and maybe we can meet his sisters...Should be a great time. Our hotel is a block away from the September 11th Memorial. So far we can’t get tickets. But I will keep trying to find a way... I would like to find Laurie Ann Neira’s name on the Memorial. I participated in Project 2996 and honored her on my blog that day...

I found her daughter on Facebook and we chatted once..I wonder if she knows I still think of her mother? I I want to do a rubbing of her mom’s name and send it to her..
While there, I can do a rubbing for anyone who knows someone who died on September 11th. It would be my honor.

So that's us..Busy Busy but I guess it could be waaayyyy worse... Left overs aren't always so bad.


Tina in CT said...

Katya and I went to the 9/11 museum across the street from the new building construction. It's the museum that's been there for a while. It was fantasic and so moving. We also paid for a guided tour and our guide was a NYPD officer that survived and got out of the Towers. I will never forget listening to him. That and touring Dachau in Germany are the two things in my life that have made a lasting impression. I highly recommend the museum and guided.

What about American Girl Place?

I am so jealous that you're going to the Cake Boss's Bakery. I want to see if my cousin wants to drive there one Saturday.

How lucky your students are to have such a dedicated teacher. Sad hearing what kind of home they come from.

Jojo, Julz, Julianne said...

AG is too crazy. The line is usually out the door, and shopping is so hard. We have one here now, so we are set !!!

Tina in CT said...

We have never had it crowded when we've gone but it is always a weekday the first week of January so all the kids are back in school. I've been to the Boston store but it can't compare to the big one in NYC. I love going there and also having lunch in the pink restaurant. Sadly the grandchildren are outgrowing AG. My daughter and I will miss it. Katya and I checked out bags there when we went to the City last July for 4 days as Grand Central no longer has lockers (after 9/11). We did a quick tour through the store but she really wasn't too interested. First they outgrew all those imported smocked dresses and now AG. Sigh.