Ugh. <enter obligatory bad-at-blogging post here>

So, it’s been a while.

I am teaching. High school English (and newspaper). And it is hard. I definitely enjoy it though (most days).

I’ve survived my first years of HIGH-STAKES TESTING! My juniors took the Arkansas state literacy exam this week, and I can finally take a deep breath after months of worry, stress, anxiety, nightmares, migraines and general misery with regard to this test. And, remarkably, I really think my kids did WELL! They all seem to think so. I won’t even get into my thoughts on high-stakes testing like this (bad) or how high the stakes really are for this test (super), but I can say with confidence that I pray I never had to go through that again.

I’m trying to shift my energy (what little I have left) to really thinking about Common Core and how it will all look in my classroom now that we are finished with this test. In general, I have no problem with the Common Core State Standards except where they focus on standardized testing. But, having not yet seen the PARCC test (as I don’t believe it’s even fully been written yet), I’m not willing to throw the baby out with the bathwater. Time will tell.

I am very excited to really teach English this last quarter, though. Teaching test-taking strategies, even when they do involve English skills, is draining. Our next unit (Roaring 20s and Harlem Renaissance) will be so fun!

Grad school is exhausting too. I’m so ready to graduate. Come on, December!

On the plus side, I love teaching memes. They make me happy when skies are grey (and students’ attitudes are black).


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