Slice of Life #10

At 5:30pm I was sitting in my classroom again, in heels and a pencil skirt.  I was frantically printing out progress reports, setting out the appointment list, fixing my hair, and cleaning off a few stray desks.  Parent-teacher conferences started tonight and due to the number of students we have, it’s always a crazy time.  I love meeting the parents but I hate the stress that comes with it.  We have five minutes with each parent, which never feels like enough time to get anything done.

But it was all worth it when I heard over and over, “I don’t know what you’re doing, but my son/daughter is actually reading now!”

I never feel prouder than when I hear those words.  Or these.

“It kills me, but sometimes I have to take the book away from her so that she does her homework!”

“Last night, I caught him hiding in the bathroom reading!  Instead of sleeping like he should have been.”

“She’s reading books that actually mean something, books that have a message.  She isn’t fighting me about reading anymore.  I don’t even know what to do with myself!”

It’s conferences like these that remind WHY I am doing what I am doing.  With the lack of time for language arts this year I have been struggling a lot with lighting the reading fire.  I didn’t know if I was making a difference for many of my students because I only see them for 50 minutes per day.  But now I know I am!!

5 Responses

  1. Those are always the amazing moments in teaching – knowing you are making a difference.

    Next year my schedule will be a little bit different too. One possibility is that I might have about an hour and 15 minutes daily for reading and writing. I have been reflecting on how I will want to set it up.

  2. what wonderful things to hear! Congratulations to you!

  3. Please tell me it’s not true that you only have five minutes per conference. Surely that’s a typo. I can’t imagine getting anything done during such a short time.

    My struggling middle school readers and I are growing and enjoying delving into some more strenuous reading. We just finished a section from I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. Much of it was hard for them – completely different setting from here in rural Alaska, etc. Yet, they connected with her struggles.

    Thanks for your blog. I benefit from it.

  4. Congratulations to you! I had a student today tell me that he woke up at 11 pm and couldn’t get back to sleep so he picked up a book and didn’t go to sleep until 4 am. He came into school took an AR test and scored 100% on the book. The book was a Michigan Chillers book and he said it was his most favorite type of book. He said he wants to read all that they have.

  5. Teachers like you make our world better. Good for you!! The best words I’ve ever heard from my son were written on a bright green piece of paper with dandelions glued to it. His teacher had the children finish a sentence and decorate the pages for Mother’s Day. Each page said, “My mother is special because . . . ”

    My son’s answer: “. . . she reads to me.” He was 4 years old. I framed it. 🙂

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