Today went very fast and sometimes sideways.
I had APUSGOV first. I grouped students up and had each group brainstorm a list of things a newly established government would need to do in order to keep a country functioning, and then I tried to derail each group’s plans with hypothetical crises (rebellion, invasion, disease, famine, economic collapse… I also tampered with unsecured elections, educational systems, and so on). My point: good governments are multifaceted and hard to make. In fact, our first attempt at it failed.
See that segue? It would have been SO smooth except for two things: my photocopies of the Articles of Confederation hadn’t printed properly (somehow missing a page), and my laptop wasn’t connecting to my classroom TV.
I apologized, and took a few minutes to make new photocopies and get a projector from Mrs. T. Then my students got to work figuring out the Articles’ weaknesses, and things they didn’t provide for. I closed with a bit of Crash Course, and previewed what our study of the Constitution will look like next class.
I’m still getting used to the fact that I don’t have my World classes back-to-back anymore (I did for the past ten years). Also, the upperclassmen in my advisory are ridiculous (they fake whine about eeeeeverything) and they know it, so having them in between teaching ninth graders does not give me a breather. I do laugh a lot, though.
I tried to go use the bathroom, which is inside the staff room, after advisory, but The Vice Principal had commandeered the staff room to talk to a student. No idea why there and not her office, but… not my circus.
I just didn’t get to pee until lunch.
I’m still doing basic intro stuff in World, so today I did vocab (which gives me an idea of how quickly and for what duration I can do direct instruction with each class). Then I did a lesson that’s a pre-assessment of several skills; my students split into groups and looked at different cultural artifacts (letters from the Gulf War, wedding photos from Pakistan, a bit of poetry or art- I vary that yearly). They made observations and inferences, and asked questions, and we discussed it all. For the remainder of class (and homework, as needed), they had to look into something further- their choice- so I’ll be able to see how well they research and cite sources.
I felt good about how the lesson went, especially Block 4. And then I got an email during lunch that an anonymous donor had paid for my dress down Fridays (it’s a dollar a week to our sunshine fund). Mr. F got one, too. We have no clue who did that for us, but it’s super nice.
During my prep, I marked the initial homework I collected in all my classes today (I always give a small assignment on day one because if it doesn’t get done I’ll know right away who’s going to struggle with work completion), and started reading one of the new books Mrs. T and I got about Afghanistan (I read all our new Africa books over the summer). I got about forty pages in before the afternoon bell. Woot.