Tonight was the first class of fall semester for grad school. This is officially my LAST CLASS. Which means graduation is finally looming on the horizon... it's so close, I can almost taste it! But first... I have to get through this class. This one is the reading clinic, which is a lot like student teaching. It's two nights a week. One night is a seminar with the other grad students. The other night, I'll be working with two students to assess and improve their reading. It sounds like a neat program. We work with kids from a local charter school. Four grad students and eight kids are assigned to a classroom. Each grad student is responsible for assessing their two students and then using those results to plan lessons for them. But, we can also combine all eight kids and do "whole class" lessons... or group kids by needs for certain lessons. It's very flexible. But it's a LOT of work. Some of the projects we have to do:
~ assess both students using two different tests
~ keep a journal of our personal experiences
~ keep a log of our experiences with the kids
~ keep a portfolio of the students' work samples
~ write a detailed case report for both students we're tutoring
~ read a professional resource book and discuss it in literature circles with other grad students
~ plan an hour-long professional staff development with our teaching group and present it to the other grad students
~ have a conference with the parents of the students we tutor
It's a bit over-whelming. Add all the responsibilities of a full-time teacher to the mix, and it gets a bit hairy. To quote the little blue engine, "I think I can, I think I can, I think I can..."
However... on the brighter side of things... my classroom is pretty much done. My student count is up to 17 (11 boys and 6 girls). I'm going in again tomorrow to make some copies for the first day of school (which is in six days - yikes!!!). And then I can enjoy my long weekend.