Saturday, April 25, 2020

★Can you hear me?★ Original Poem★

Can you hear me? 

I’m so alone 
Can you hear me? 
The pain is too much to bare 
And I know nobody will care 
Too much has happened 
Too much has brought me down 
Crashing, fall to the ground 
Draining out all my blood 
Maybe this is the only way out 
Maybe I won’t have to feel this pain 
If I just fall into a deep sleep 
My life is something I want to keep
But I’m withering to my death 
Taking in my last breath 
Unless someone can wake me 
And show me the light I can’t see anymore 
Because so far all I’ve been shown 
Is betrayal and loveless lonely days 
My life is painted in shades of grays 
Tell me what’s the use of prayer? 
Because I know I don’t deserve his grace 
I’m just so out of place 
I never belonged here 
Myself and my past is my worst fear 
I never want to trust again 
Because lying is ignorant bliss 

Original written 9:45am, 3/27/08 

Edited: 4/25/20 

Time: 12:18pm

★Quarantine Blurbs★

I honestly never thought that I would wake up one morning to say "I think I am going to write a blog entry today".  This website was left neglected as I tried navigating my life and balancing things before they fell apart.  Today I guess was just a time that I started thinking deeply about what I want to do with this website and move forward. 

With this site, I have tried doing press things but something just didn't work out to the way I wanted it so after a few months of thinking, I decided to make this a site for my writing whether it be poems or short stories, and blogging. So, here’s my first new entry as my next step is to create a consistent schedule.  

My life in quarantine has been interesting and an emotional roller coaster. I do not think that I have ever been tested so much in my life to understand myself but also the world around me. In the beginning of the quarantine my boyfriend and I had ended our relationship of 5  and a few months.  It was mutual so no hard feelings but it hurt nonetheless.  The worst part is thinking someone is going to make a home with you and potentially have children then it kind of just vanishes.  

I guess at first I did not realize how different we were or I did and chose to ignore it saying that it’s good we’re different because we don’t want to get bored of each other. It was truly an interesting outcome of events to say the least and as days go bye because my ex and I are stuck in this situation until March of 2021, I see how much we weren’t compatible. It’s not a bad thing either and better to find out sooner rather than later.  

I have to admit that I was seeking into a rut. I think the biggest lost in this was human connection. Daily I work with 19 students as well as a staff of 28 and that has all been replaced with virtual learning. So, now I am stuck in this environment where my break up took place having to set it up so we can co-exist on top of setting up things for my bedroom. 

It is not easy to think about sometimes. My bedroom is now my office, my job has been stressful, and things just seemed to be going wrong. I am thankful though to have some people in my life to keep me leveled. I don’t think that I would have made it to this point if I hadn’t had certain people to lean on during this time. I think that human connection is important and happy that we live in a time where we’re able to still see each other’s faces and talk to them. 

We’re still able to watch movies with them or play video games with them despite the distance. Human connection I think is often taken for granted or lost in the busyness of our lives.  That’s why I hope each and everyone reading this is doing well. This also isn’t a disregard of what is happening on the frontlines but more of someone letting everyone know we’re not alone in this. Everyone is affected.  This is just my personal piece of the puzzle to Covid-19.  

Monday, February 3, 2020

★How to Avoid Self-Doubt with Teaching★

If there is one thing that I regret this school year is that I let self-doubt wedge a space between myself and the parent(s)/guardian(s) of my students. I won't go into too much details because it is not my place but I can talk about how it effected me as a teacher moving forward throughout this year.

Through out the year I have become to doubt myself as a teacher and wonder if maybe I was not fit for this position. I think about wise words from pocketful of primary about being a first year teacher and even words that my own principal had shared with me. "This is your first year and it will NOT be perfect".

I think the biggest false thing is that I went in thinking it was going to be a scene from "The Sound of Music" where the children are gathered around me and we're singing about the sound "Do" and what it relates to. It wasn't and I am not okay with that. The first year is not going to be perfect and as PoP said that there are going to be feelings where you just want to give up and throw in the towel.

I have been given the opportunity to work with the most amazing, strong-willed, and bright students. However, I let some things get in the way of developing full relationships with the students and their parents. I could have done so much more this year to let parents know that I am here. I started this very day by texting a few parents.

So, when you are feeling that self doubt here are some things that you can do to help battle the self-doubt demon.

1. Reflect:  Take about 10-15 minutes to just sit and reflect on your day. Why didn't something go the way you wanted? Did it work out in the end? Be ready to start the new day! One thing I do everyday is reflect on my day and what went well and what I can improve. Keyword is improve or grow! Teaching, especially management skills, is a learning process and not all of us are blessed with programs to help teach you management skills.

2. Ask advice from a trusted teacher: We all have our teacher best friends but we also have our Jedi Master teacher friends. We can rely on these friends to help us give the best advice especially if they have years of experience in the certain subject! They can help out with ideas or even help you brainstorm your own. They can even help you catch those "what if" moments so you either avoid them or better prepared to handle them.

3. Include your Teaching Assistant!!!!: I cannot stress this one enough. Teaching assistants are there for more than just watch the kids and help them when they get stuck but they're your collaborating partner because they too are spending a lot of time with your students. I was a teaching assistant last year and I felt like I wasn't learning anything and when I saw the relationship of two teachers in a classroom in Texas, it was magical. I mean MAGICAL. They flowed so well with each other and you can feel there was a sense of balance in the room. I owe a lot to my teaching assistant because she does so much and I am so blessed to have her. These are also potential teachers that you can help kindle that fire by including them into things.

4. Ask you Admin team: When I am at my last resort and I am not sure what to do then I go to my admin team. It has been a busy year so they haven't gotten to every thing I had asked in the beginning but there are times where they make sure they show that they're there. Don't think that any question is a stupid question and if you think that there is something that should be discussed then have that critical discussion with them. If you're not sure something is right then ask them.

5. Take time for yourself: I have been fortunate to be in a situation where it hasn't been crazy that I need to take so many days off, but do take care of your mental health and let your admin team know. I thought that I wouldn't be happy to have a break but I was and I see what my principal meant by it's been a while and to take care of you when there is a break so get things done.  If you are not 100% then you cannot take care of 25-30 kids.

6. Look for outside resources: There are some programs that offer some training for classroom management. I'll explain in another blog about how classroom management skills are a key detail in preventing teacher burn out. I believe that its important that class management is taught to teachers especially entering urban schools. If you are in a greater Milwaukee area, I highly suggest checking out or Center for urban teacher. I had learned to reinforce my management skills and also had the opportunity to do summer school to utilize those skills!

After starting to follow these, I found myself in a better state of mind than I was in. I'm not afraid to talk to parents and I wasn't afraid to include my TA in things or beginning to ask questions I thought were stupid because it was all part of my growth as a teacher. My Self-doubt became my worse enemy by making me paint a picture of the teacher I never wanted to be. I want my students and guardians know that I do care about their students' success and that I want to make sure that they know that I am here to support them.  Don't let self-doubt control you and if you feel like that then use some of the things above to help guide you through this school year.

Side note: Apologies for the late post! I was sick with the flu or something and finally feeling better. Stay tuned for more things happening with FollowMei such as livestreams and potentially a podcast!

Saturday, January 18, 2020

★What I have learned so far on my teaching journey★

It has officially been a while since I have last written here. I know I always talk about coming back but it just did not work out at the time. I had just recently accepted a position as a third grade lead teacher at the school that I work at and now working on my Masters in Education-Teaching and learning as well as my teaching license. My plate was piled high and I was not sure why God had placed me in this position but I knew if I focused on things that it will work out. In fact, I passed my first two classes with an A!
This blog will go a certain way. I will be doing let’s plays and also blogging about my experience as a teacher. I’m the teacher that games.  The first I want to talk about is my experience teaching.
I admit I was nervous but determined that my students would not fall behind. With my determination however came a lot of self-doubt and it became an emotional roller coaster. I had felt that a lot of the year that I had disappointed my admin team and I do not like disappointing people. That gnaws at me a lot. I began to feel that I was incapable of doing this job and began questioning God and his plan. “Are you sure I am meant to be here?” and so on. I
         However, I began to realize that this my own demon that began to hang around. Its name is Self-doubt. I knew that this was an attachment from the people in my past. Consoling with my fellow teachers I began to pick myself up and knowing me I do not step back. I began to read devotions and come to a understanding that things that are going on now are not by chance but what I am meant to do with my life. I began to start talking with what I need to do to ensure my students succeed no matter what. I won’t feel like a failure if they do not get something now because they may very well get it down the road. I learned that being a teacher is a learning process and it's trial and error when you have a class. 
            So, if you are a first year teacher, do not stress it. There are days that will not be perfect, and maybe no learning will get completed but as long as they are growing into incredible little people then you’ve done your job. I have seen miracles happen such as a student who had no compassion for reading, asking his grandma to read with him and be excited to talk about what he had learned that day. Celebrate your small victories and keep then close because that will be a reminder that there will be more to come. If you believe in God or some form of religion, ask for guidance and understanding.
Talk with teachers who have been there for a while and get some insight but do not gain wisdom from bitter teachers. Surround yourself with those who have a positive energy because the ones negative energy can wear on your soul. Celebrate the small wins, big wins, and learn from the losses.  You'll be just fine.