Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--
I took the one less travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.

...Robert Frost...

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Work, work, work....

Work this term has been hectic. Earlier in the year I was sitting around wondering when the phone would ring, never knowing from one day to the next when I would be working. Now, I'm hanging out for a day off! At the beginning of the term I took a contract at a small school relieving for 5 weeks. This school would have to be my favourite school to teach at. Somewhere where you actually teach and not spend most of the day dealing with discipline and welfare issues. I had years 5 and 6 and I loved it. I did a unit on Antarctica which was lots of fun.

Plenty of opportunities for some great art lessons

Paper mache

Obligatory projects

But full time work brings the mounds of marking

I loved every minute of it and was a bit sad when it came to an end. Fortunately, I was able to move straight to another contract at another, much smaller country school, only 34 students. This one is 4 days a week for the rest of the year. A tougher cliental. A completely different approach to learning is needed here. These kids need a completely hands approach to learning, lots of practical experiences.

I had taught here last year for a few days and have to admit, found it a greater challenge than anywhere I have ever taught. In fact, I felt completely disillusioned with teaching an seriously considered never teaching again. So, it was with much trepidation that I accepted the contract to work there. I just felt that I couldn't be bothered any more with the attitude and behaviour issues. Why did I say yes? Because I couldn't say no. But I have been pleasantly surprised. No, they are not angels, things have not changed that dramatically. But a few of the key disruptive students have left. What a difference that has made. After five weeks there, I actually feel like I have worked out how to relate to them, how to keep them under control. Who knows, by the end of the year I may actually not want to leave. I shouldn't speak too soon...

Right now though, I'm on spring break and couldn't be happier about that!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Life is crazy. It's going too fast and I just can't seem to catch up. So much for journalling everything. The longer it went, the harder to get started. So backtracking bit by bit.

July school holidays. Seems like sooooo long ago. A distant memory. Holidays are funny like that. You plan for them for so long, enjoy every minute of them and then within no time they seem so long ago. We spent the first week at home. So much to do. A spare room that was in desperate need of a clean up, dentist appointments, hair appointments, some gardening, family visits and new born babies (niece and nephew) to meet.

Then, the Major and I boarded a plane and headed to Adelaide. Again.

A very quick 3 day trip to attend the birthday of a dear friend. A big birthday.

A big trip. A long way. But oh so worth it. Managed to catch up with a few friends.

Then, it was another flight to the Gold Coast.

A week with J and her family. A house on the Gold Coast canal.

It was the winter break, so not exactly beach weather which is what you would normally head to the Gold Coast for. We went for the Worlds- Dreamworld, White Water World and MovieWorld. After our time in the USA, I thought I would never want to visit a theme park again, but there's something about the fun the kids have at places like that. And we have so few of these holidays left with all of them. We wanted to do a 'kid' focused holiday with all of them, before Mr B's final year of school next year.

They had a great time. But J and I, well that's another story. We made the very bad decision to take on the Claw.

Two forty something year old, but young at heart women taking on the Claw. It had to be done. We were practicing for the Amazing Race after all. We would not be defeated.
I learnt three things. I am not a screamer, I just laugh a lot, even when being swung mercilessly on an almost 360 degree pendulum. Secondly,J is a screamer. Usually a big laugher, but not when being swung mercilessly from a giant pendulum. And lastly, The Claw remains unconquered by two forty something year olds who are perhaps more foolish at heart than young.

The end result- my lunch being an absolute waste of money and the rest of the afternoon spent sleeping in the car trying to recover. Both of us. At lest three hours before we felt half decent again. Apparently the rest of our families had an enjoyable day.

So, the next day, whilst they all tackled another world, J and I tackled the shops instead. Far more an achievable accomplishment for us.

Then, it was all over. An eight hour drive and we were finally home with school starting the next day.

Really, I needed a holiday to recover from our holiday.