New (School) Year’s Resolutions

I never make resolutions for January 1. At that point I am on vacation and the last thing I want to do is restrain myself or resist temptation. Instead, I offer my School Year resolutions.

Almost all of which have already been broken. I suck.

1. Only use the paper that I need and double side whenever possible to help the environment.

Umm, this one already went bye-bye. I had a screaming headache and sent a handout to the lounge to print. I forgot that it was two pages long, so when I went to retrieve it I was met by 80 sheets of paper that all needed to be stapled. The mere thought of hearing the staple clank 40 times (with time for unjamming/ refilling said stapler) was enough to make me nauseous. 

By the way, why are those bastards so hard to unjam? By the time I’m stabbing at it with a scissor point, I’m liable to scrap the lesson and watch Schoolhouse Rock instead. 

So, my solution? I went back to my room and re-printed it double sided.

Good news? I saved the 80 now useless sheets of paper to use for scrap. Until I get tired of looking at them at which time they will be tossed in the recycling bin. Which is kind of the same thing and like I used them anyway, so maybe I still win.

2. Make a hearty and healthy crock pot meal on Sunday night to cook Monday so that we have healthy dinners for at least two nights during the work week.

Yeah, no, but I really had good intentions. I bought a pork loin and put it in the freezer. Where it is still sitting three weeks later. In fact, one week we had hot dogs on Monday, McDonald’s Tuesday and ordered Papa Romanos Wednesday. I figure we have so many preservatives coursing through our bodies that we are guaranteed to live until we’re 150. Or, we will die of a heart attack but can be propped up any family gathering a la Weekend at Bernie’s. 

3. Show up each day fully prepared for each class.

This one is usually easy to uphold. I pride myself on being completely organized and ready and always one step ahead. However, my memory has decided to start taking field trips at odd times of the day, and she won’t answer my texts. So, this is super embarrassing, but my class and I read the Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God sermon (don’t you TOTALLY miss high school English?) We started with notes on rhetoric used in the piece (see? Prepared!) and when we went to actually read the damn thing, I panicked thinking, Shit! This is a long piece! Why didn’t I come up with a guide or note-taking sheet so they could make sense of it? So I ended up grabbing an organizer I was using for another class and handed it out. The kids muddled through.

I kid you not, at the end of the SAME DAY, I looked at my table of handouts, and, in fact, I had CREATED a reading guide, COPIED a reading guide, and PLACED a reading guide exactly where it should have been. On the same. Table. Of handouts.

I may need to go in for cognitive testing.

4. Exercise at least three days a week. 

Week 1– Fail. Week 2– Fail. Week 3– FAIL. 

In the morning I write it down in my planner. I visualize getting home early, changing into running gear and heading out the door while it’s still light. I imagine upping my distance, or running some sprints to get ready for the half marathon that is looming next month.

By the time I get home I am wiped out.

Take last Thursday. It was over 80 degrees in my classroom all day. I usually make a mocha to keep me awake on the drive home, but it was just too hot so I stuck with water. After exercising my eyelids during the monotony of 275, I dragged myself into the house, kicked off my shoes, fell on the couch and crashed. I didn’t wake until Derek walked in the door, and it still took me another 30 minutes to fully wake. Super Fail.

5. Get things graded in a decent amount of time to stay on top of things.

There’s no way around it– grading sucks. It’s time consuming, gratifying and disheartening. Some things MUST be graded right away. A free write has to be looked at and returned before continuing the lesson. Papers take MUCH longer due to all of the comments. I was on track and started to believe I would make it this first quarter when… the English 10 essays were due. They were due September 15. There are 33 of them. I have graded 4.

Oh, they’ve come home with me every weekend and even some week nights. We’re like besties at this point. But, yeah, they will take a while and I just have a block. I am writing this right now to avoid them (don’t tell).

6. Write a blog every week

FINALLY something I have been able to do for the last three weeks! Even though they haven’t all been winners, I am writing and that makes me feel REALLY good.

So right now that makes me 1/6 for resolutions. Or 17%. But 17% is keeping me sane and balanced so far, and that really is the ultimate resolution for the school year. 

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