Happy Friday! Sometimes, as a teacher, the small victories can make you really happy. Here are a few from this week:
1. One of my students, whose grade is literally around a 15 for the quarter, has been more focused this week, and today actually had his reading homework done and then CRUSHED IT with his classwork.
2. One of my girls kept her behavior under control today and was laser-focused on her work, and when I told her how much better she did today, she had such a great smile on her face.
3. A student who is both on an IEP and is an ESL (English as a Second Language) is really into the book we are reading (Waiting for Snow in Havana). Spanish is his first language, so he feels a connection with this Cuban author and loves when the author uses some Spanish. The other day, this boy was a star participant in class, and earned 2 merits for this (I usually only give a student 1 merit per class).
4. My co-teacher and I have been trying to get the behavior of one of our students under control, and so he's been earning a lot more demerits lately. He was definitely pissed about this, and made a lot of noise about it. But I think (I hope) it might finally be clicking for him. Today he did earn a demerit for talking across the room when he was supposed to be working with a partner, but when I told him he had a demerit he just said "okay" in a way that conveyed he knew he had been doing something wrong, and then he refocused on his work. His focus wasn't constant during class, but it was definitely much better and he was more productive. I made sure to tell him at the end of class that though there is still room for improvement, I was happy with how much better he did, and he was pleased to hear this.
5. When I gave my sophomores some classwork the other day, they all got right down to work and were silent basically the entire time. No need for reminders and shushing from me, no demerits. I couldn't believe it! I gave the whole class a merit for that. Now I just need to work on getting them to focus/behave that well all the time.