Monday, April 18, 2005

On the Other Side, and Doing Fine

I have gotten through the progression of stressful situations, and I am no worse for the wear. Actually, I feel really good about most of it!

The observation with Jill went fabulously. ZJ of course tested my limits, but Jill pointed out that I am doing well in "handling" him. He's an energetic senior who needs lots of attention. He was actually absent on Friday, and another student, RL who is a really good kid, joked about how quiet and "no fun" things seemed without him. (It was a work day, so I wasn't terribly offended.)

The meeting for the International Reading Association's Plains Area Regional Conference was fun. I went through about forty applications for presenters, so I now know what is good and what isn't good for those applications. If I don't have a job next year, I have plenty of time to put together a presentation for the IRA or MRA!

The same day we had the final Praxis test. Whew! It had some pretty tough questions on it, including one on how to use standardized test scores. I feel like there were some things that weren't covered... There wasn't one IEP on the essay/document portion of the test, which surprised me. There was a tip for a student with a 501 plan, but not an IEP, which I am pretty used to adapting to at this point, especially with my work with Ms. Ryan and talking to all of the special ed folks at lunch. I'm still shocked that some of the other student teachers haven't even seen their students' IEPs, though they have knowledge of their having them... how can they adapt their lessons and grading policies?

Sunday was work, while making last minute adjustments on my resume. Panic sets in, and my stomach does flip flops. In my last hour of my shift, I found I wasn't quite breathing in a normal pattern. What if, what if, what if...

And today was the job fair! I found out that Rochester isn't actually hiring for English positions and isn't building a new high school as I had previously heard. Owatonna, however is, and Farmington is and Faribault is, and one of those two is looking for a Journalism teacher as well as a Drama teacher, both of which I have experience doing doing (not teaching drama, but involvement).

And I had an interview with Fargo! I think it went well, and I learned a lot about what I need to learn (Six Traits of Writing--understand the concepts, but don't have the vocabulary) and how to prepare for the next interview. There is a possibility of moving to a second round of interviews, though I don't want to jinx anything. I called Ryan and I asked him, "So, how do you feel about Fargo?" Several other of my peers had some interviews with Arizona, Coon Rapids, Minnetonka, etc. One had a question about which three books students should take away from their American Literature course. I would have loved that question! It was followed up with a discussion on (what else?) To Kill a Mockingbird. That kills me. :) Coon Rapids... Hmm...

Well, I have a million online applications to fill out tonight. And tomorrow. Many schools are going through the applications this and next week for interviews and such in early May. Good thing I have a rough idea what I'm going to do with my students tomorrow, so I'll just spend those extra hours grading myself into oblivion.

To those in the cohort reading this, good luck going through the massive amount of pamphlets and good lucky applying! We all need it. :) But I think we're all well trained and have great educations and great professors supporting us!

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