I bet you think this is going to be a post about politics. It's totally not. I told you I'm pretending none of that happened. Although, it has been nice to see gas prices come down a little bit. I'm sure they're headed right back through the roof until the next time it benefits a candidate for them to come down, but I'll count the blessing for today anyway.
Nope, this post is about the big, bad state assessment that took place at my school Wednesday. When I first started my job I raged against the insanity of all the regulations. Because, honestly, some of them are stupid. I still have issues telling parents what to pack in their child's lunch, because, well, I'm not a socialist. (To be honest, I don't know if socialists really dictate people's lunches, but in my imaginary world, they do) I also work at a school where all the teachers are kind, loving, creative, and smart. And I feel like sometimes these guidelines don't allow people to be who they are when they teach.
But guess what? Throwing a tantrum about ECERS did not make it go away. Mercifully, I was not chosen my first year. It's just not something you want to add to your plate your first time around the block. Last year I decided to quit wasting my energy being a hater and do what I do when something makes me nervous. I learned the material backwards and forwards. (This sometimes does not pay off in my life, like when I google medical conditions and what not...still, it's how I cope) I could have taken a bubble-in test, or an essay test, or given a speech all about the environmental rating scale. I made myself look at the ways it made me a better teacher. I also spent a lot of time thinking about those kids who don't have the option of going to a preschool like mine. My school is, for sure, an exception. There really is nowhere else like it. There are lots of great preschools and childcare facilities. But we all know there are some that are not. These standards GREATLY benefit kids in those places. No parent wants their child in a subpar childcare environment. But, sometimes they don't have a choice.
Anywho, I was picked last year, and because I have stellar luck, I was chosen again this year! In some ways, I wish I had a hilarious story for you about something zany that happened in my classroom. But I don't! Everything we've worked on to this point in class, my kids followed through on without missing a beat!
We don't find out our scores until after Christmas. And there's really no way to tell how you did. It's fairly subjective. All you can do is hope you don't get the school shut down. Which, if we're all honest, would be a story I would end up telling. I don't think it happened this year. So, I did what any good citizen of the state does after a day like Wednesday. I went to dinner with my teacher friends and tossed back some vino.
And then the next day I taught a really shady lesson on the "Triangle of Trade" to some fourth graders. And I may have laughed out loud, hard, when one student kept shouting, "I need rum! I need rum!"
I hear ya, buddy, I hear ya.