Sunday Post | I Know the Problem

September 13, 2015 Sunday Post 33

Welcome to y Sunday Post!
Sunday Post

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba @Caffeinated Book Reviewer. Basically it’s a chance to talk about the books you bought, borrowed, blogged about, and read for the week and what’s coming in the week ahead – and then share them with a much wider blogging community. Check out the details here.

News at Home

For the most part, this past week could still be described as purgatory. I’m still working hellish hours (even with Monday off I easily worked 70 hours last week) and I still have a to-do list a mile long. But I’m also learning to accept not getting things done. I figure I hate my job and while some miracle might change things, it’s unlikely. So I’m determined to fill the rest of my life with as much of what I love as I can. More on that in the Blog News section…

I did have one almost good day last week, though. Friday. On Friday, my most frustrating, badly behaved student was suspended. Yes. That’s right. Suspended in Kindergarten. She’s so SO bad. She was suspended on Thursday after I had to carry her kicking, screaming, and trying to bite me from the playground because she flat out REFUSED to leave when recess was over. I had my other 18 kids lined up ready to go inside and walked them to the office with her in my arms, because the sub that is sometimes my assisstant was covering another class at that time. When I got to the office I set her down and asked for help, watching the rest of my class through the glass doors. They were actually well-behaved; I think they were scared of me at that moment, because I wasn’t exactly happy. So yeah, she was suspended and wasn’t able to come to school on Friday. And guess what? Friday was an almost good day. I have two other students that really challenge my authority, but I am able to bring both of them back in line eventually. It was the first day that we stayed mostly on schedule. It was the first day that I smiled with the kids. We learned. And I didn’t have my helper at all Friday.

This brings me to one conclusion. My problem is 1 child. This pisses me off for several reasons. First off all, I hate that one child is beating me. One screaming, frustrating five year old is running my classroom. How infuriating! I also hate that she’s ruining everyone’s chance to learn – including her own. She’s quite possibly the SMARTEST kid in my class. If not, definitely one of them. I also hate that she got stuck in my class. Why couldn’t I get something a little easier for my first year? Why? It also sucks that I can’t hate her because that would make things a lot easier. But she’s five years old and clearly she has more emotional baggage than some 50 year olds that I know. I really hope I can figure out how to make her break down some of her barriers with me. She’ll be back on Monday (tomorrow already! Geez!) and I’m dreading it after a glimpse of what our class could be without her. But I’m also so frustrated with myself for not knowing what to do to make her listen to me. I met with the behavior specialist on Friday and we put together a plan that I’m going to begin working on. Fingers crossed!

I do have a funny story to share from this week, too, though. On Wednesday one of our bilingual kinder teachers was unable to come in and they weren’t able to get a sub. So they had to divide his class among the remaining four kinder teachers. So I had 5 kids added to my class with varied abilites to speak English. They were so incredibly well-behaved I found myself wishing I spoke Spanish well enough to be a bilingual teacher (that’s a whole different subject though). I tried to keep them involved in the class throughout the day, pulling out a little bit of Spanish when I could (to the amazement of my students which was kind of fun). Towards the end of the day each child was getting a chance to share what they learned about soil from our lesson and I tried to include the bilingual kids. Two of them understood and particiapted well. One stood up and when I asked, “What did you learn about soil?” responded “yes.” I tried different questions about soil and each time she responded “yes.” I finally told her to sit down, since clearly she didn’t understand. The fourth one stood up when it was his turn and just stared at me. Each question I asked was met with a stare. I finally told him to sit down and he continued to stare at me. It wasn’t until I told him to sit in Spanish that he sat. Yeah, he didn’t have a clue what was going on either. The girl sitting next to him, though, was raising her hand excitedly. So I was sure she knew what was going on. It was her turn, so I called on her and asked her what she learned about soil. She responded, with a very clear voice – “Cake.” She had this big smile, like she was sure it was the right answer. I barely restrained my laughter. I asked her a clarifying question and she responded, in the same very clear certain voice- “Yes. Cake.” I don’t know how I didn’t laugh as I told her to sit back down. But I laughed about it a lot later over my daily glass *bottle* of wine.

It sounds like things are getting better – and in some ways they are. In some respects, I’m just learning to accept hell. And while I continue to eat very little, my consumption of wine has increased quite a lot. A bonus? I’m trying out lots of different kinds of Moscato and I think I may have found the perfect bottle for me 🙂

Blog News

Like I said above, I’ve decided that I have to fill my life with as much of the things I love as I can, since I hate my job and that’s not likely to change while I’m teaching Kinder (so until I get fired, quit, or May 2016 – whichever comes first). I’ve been reading a lot more – finished a book this week and am working on another one. I’m trying to blog more – I had one review post this past week and hope to have a least two this week. I even replied to comments! It’s a work in progress, but I’m getting there. I also started taking steps to go to BEA 2016 in Chicago and have officially booked a hotel room. It’s only the first step and one that’s easily reversed if things don’t work out. But I feel so good thinking I’m going to be gone for a week in May, doing what I love. I’m going to request the days off in the next month so that I know if they’ll make a big deal about it or not. I don’t think they will honestly. A sub for my room will even be easy, since I’ve had a sub working with my class on and off since week 1.

#FitReaders Update

My diet is pretty unchanged. I drink a glass of milk with a granola bar for breakfast. I have a protein shake (Ensure or Boost for lunch) and I’ve been managing to eat a light dinner. Usually a Lean cuisine or some edameme with deli meat. And wine. I drink at least a glass a day lately. It just helps shut my brain down and turn off those songs!

As for exercise, I’m still not working out – but I am getting in at least 10k steps daily. My top day last week was 13k steps I believe. Except the weekend. I’m so lazy on Saturdays! I slept until 12:30 yesterday and I think I got in like 1,000 steps. I’m just so worn out by time Saturday comes – I always have plans to get work done so I can be lazy on Sunday, but even if I manage to do some work, I don’t manage much because I just need to be a vegetable for a day. Back to work Sunday though…

Last Week on the Blog

This Week on the Blog Look For:

Hoping to have 3 reviews this week (I have TONS written that I need to share).
I will defintely (if I don’t screw up) have Kissed by Fire by Danielle Annett, since I’m part of that blog tour on 9/15.

How was your week?

Knowing the problem doesn't solve it. Another week survived with a little humor! Check out my Sunday… Click To Tweet Follow on Bloglovin


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About Berls
Berls has been a book lover her whole life. She reads pretty much every genre and is currently working hard at making her childhood dream of becoming an author come true. She loves sharing her thoughts about books, blogging, and just random fun stuff. She's a challenge and read-a-thon junkie, so it's no wonder that she loves co-hosting the COYER reading challenge. Leave a comment, Berls is always happy to chat!

33 Responses to “Sunday Post | I Know the Problem”

    • Berls

      Oh the parents have been talked to… But they’re really part of the problem. The child wouldn’t behave like this if things were really different at home. But the child ended up being removed from my class, so Woo-hoo! She’s doing much better in the other teacher’s class too, so that’s a plus 🙂

    • Berls

      Thank you Jen! It will always be more like 3 glassses than 1 😉 Things are a bit better, but still… 3 glasses!!

  1. Bookworm Brandee

    Berls, the fact that you bothered to go to the behavior specialist to create a plan of action says so much about the amazing teacher and person you are. You’re gonna get through to that little hellion…I mean girl, I just feel it. Until then, stay strong, read, and drink lots of wine. 😉 It really does seem like you had some breakthroughs this week though. So maybe you’ve ascended to a higher level in Purgatory? I love that you’re making time for the things YOU love. I know that improves your mental state of being, which in turn improves how you cope in Purgatory daily. Thanks for sharing a highlight from your week – Yes. Cake. Um, can I have some too? 😉 Here’s to kicking this week’s ass, girl! *cheers* <3
    Bookworm Brandee recently posted…Blogger Chick Chat ~ Knave of Broken Hearts ~ Tara LainMy Profile

    • Berls

      Lol thanks!!! I’m starting to do better about setting limits. I left work at 5:30 today done or not. And tomorrow I’m leaving at 5. I figure I have a bad day if I leave late, so might as well leave St a reasonable hour!

  2. kayk597

    Hey! You are on the fast track to sainthood you know! I refused a scholarship because the only one they had back then was for teaching, and no way was I going to be on death row! I could have NEVER coped like you are. You are obviously going to be a fantastic teacher if you ever get a class that’s teachable. Is there any way they can hold your problem child back one more year in hopes that she can be a bit more mature? Although it does sound like the whole family is totally dysfunctional. I think your wine solution is really good, and my sister keeps sending me addresses of liquor stores that now sell wine ice cream (might help with needed calories?), and bourbon ice cream recipes. Keep on keeping on, and I’m sending good karma your way!

    • Berls

      Thanks so much 🙂 I really hope I just make it through this year and then get a position next year that better fits me. I think the biggest problem is that they put me in a grade level I was 100% unprepared to teach AND THEN gave me problem kids on top of that!

  3. Katherine

    That’s really too bad about the one kid. My daughter was in a class that had 3 kids that just couldn’t behave and it was really awful. She’s was a little older (4th grade) so it wasn’t as hard on her as it would’ve been that young but it was still challenging. Hopefully the behavior plan will help make some progress. If not, enjoy the Moscato! I wouldn’t worry about exercise. It sounds like you’re calories are super low and I have a feeling your on your feet quite a bit which has to count for something!
    Katherine recently posted…This Week in Reading – September 13My Profile

    • Berls

      I have three too – is it a magic number? But two of them I’ve begun to figure out and to build a relationship with, so I think we’ll be okay for the most part. I’m trying to figure out how in the world to reach this little girl though and I really feel so clueless. But the Moscato is fantastic 🙂 Hope you’re having a great weekend and have a good week.

  4. Lark

    Berls, I’m just so sorry you’re having such a tough time of it. It sounds like this child needs a lot of support and care but isn’t letting you or anyone give it… and that means you’re really getting the short end of the stick, which stinks. You’re absolutely right; it’s important for you to keep doing things you love to counteract what’s going on with your job. Hugs!
    Lark recently posted…Sunday Post – 9/13/15My Profile

    • Berls

      Thanks Kara 🙂 Yeah she needs a lot more than I can give her – especially considering I don’t know HOW or WHAT to do for her right now. I hate that I’m playing a guessing game when it’s something so important! At least I have my books and my blog 🙂 Have a great week!

  5. Bea

    It’s great that you care about your students so much but damn, the school suspended that poor little girl? That doesn’t help that poor student. You need classroom support and she needs help. I hope the plan that you and the behavior specialist came up with helps her. It sounds like you’re managing to keep your sense of humor, which is good. 🙂

    I’m curious, what brand is the Moscato? I’m always looking for new ones to try. I’m glad to see you taking care of yourself and making fun plans. I hope you have a great week!
    Bea recently posted…Sunday Book Share #158My Profile

    • Berls

      Yeah I know it probably wasn’t the best solution, though I was thankful for the break. I really need someone in the classroom who knows how to work with her and who can teach me what to do. I hate that I’m playing this guessing game and I really hope the behavior plan will help! I’m out right now but I will send you a picture of the Moscato when I get home on facebook 🙂 It’s sweet and yummy! Have a great week!

  6. A Voracious Reader

    You may be in purgatory, but you *care* about your students, even the problem ones and that’s all that matters in my eyes. The fact that she is such a disruption and yet you will continue to try to reach her makes you the Best Teacher Ever. So it makes you drink a bit more wine. Wine is tasty. Especially Moscato. 🙂 I will continue to wing those {{{posivibes}}} your way and hope that your store doesn’t run out of Moscato. Hang in there, Berls! We’re all behind you!
    A Voracious Reader recently posted…The Sunday Post ~ 109th EditionMy Profile

    • Berls

      Thanks Carol, that’s very kind of you. I just wish I didn’t feel sick to my stomach every Sunday in anticipation of my week ahead 🙁 Maybe it’ll pay off though and she’ll come around quicker than I could hope? I can dream right?! Have a great week and thanks for the posivibes 🙂

    • Berls

      Lol I have no idea what she was thinking! I know, it’s incredible how one student can impact things so badly – but she completely derails everything!!! One little five year old and bam! Oh well, I’ll keep enjoying my wine 🙂

  7. Lola

    Doesn’t sound like much improvement, but more like you’re slowly getting used to purgatory. And how sad one child ruins it for herself and the rest, children like that always bring out the psychologist in me, wondering what happened in her life and why they act that way. Maybe she’s just too smart and things go too slowly for her? But then again that’s not something you as a teahcer can do anything about. I don’t really know much about teacher to give any tips or advice.

    It’s good that you’re also focussing on fun things like books and wine. And that you booked your BEA hotal. Having some good things in your life hopefully makes the bad abti more bearable. I can imagine you don’t have any enegery to do something on saturday, after a week like that you deserve a weekend where you have to do nothing. I hope things wil be going a little bit better again this week! *hugs*
    Lola recently posted…Sunday Post #143My Profile

    • Berls

      Thanks Lola! That’s exactly it, I think. Im getting used to it. I do know that she has a horrible home life and has been through an awful lot – more than many adults. It makes it very hard to reach her.

      I’m so glad I’ve managed to find time for things I enjoy now though. I needed that, badly. I think as long as I can enjoy myself a bit at home the rest won’t be so bad. Have a great week Lola!

    • Berls

      She needs so so much help – and you’re so right, she needs more than I can give her. Unfortunately her home life isn’t one where they are likely to do much for her, so we’re going to have to figure this out the hard way 🙁 I’m glad you were able to find something good for your son!

  8. Michelle

    I am so sorry my friend! I actually know what you are going through with her since I did all of that with Ryan, in my case the school just didn’t want to help him. He was also suspended from Kindergarten for hitting a kid. Thankfully the next year he was sent to the school he is in now. I know you don’t have stuff like that in your district but maybe you can request or ask her parents to request the school provide her with an aid. Just for her, Ryan sort of had on in Pre-K but won’t give me one in Kinder. Everyday was something different with Ryan. I am praying that your school year gets better and the little girl can get the help she needs.

    You better be at BEA!!!!! I need to meet and HUG YOU!!! I have waited 2 years!!!! 🙂

    Trying out new Wines is a good thing 🙂 I love trying out new wine especially on those rough days!

    Have a great week my friend! We need a chat day, this school thing is cutting into our chatting time 😉
    Michelle recently posted…Hiatus over and blogging mode has begun ~ WIR & TSPMy Profile

    • Berls

      Lol I know, it’s killing my social life!! It’s a shame she doesn’t have parents like Ryan though – she needs so much at home and she has so little. Hopefully this behavior plan we have worked out will help, but I think things are going to be very difficult for a while before they get better.

      I know, I better be at BEA! It’ll take a lot to keep me from coming – my job most certainly isn’t going to be a reason!

  9. Stormi

    At least you know what/who the problem is and I think the parents need a sit down. If not she might turn out to be like the kid in my cousins class and he is in sixth grade and she has been lashing out almost everyday. He calls my dad and tells him about it all the time. 🙁 *hugs* I hope things get better but it sounds like as long as that child is in there that it might not so hang in there. 🙂

    Sounds like teaching can be expensive with all those glasses *bottles* of wine a night. 😉
    Stormi recently posted…The Week In Review #53My Profile

    • Berls

      Lol yeah that’s so very true – I’m going for the cheap wine though 🙂 Her parents have been talked to and they’re doing probably all they ever will. They have like 6 kids at the school and every single one of the is a disaster for their class. Which is why I’m like why did you put her in the first year teacher’s class? They knew she’d be hell! Oh well, just keep drinking the wine I guess!

    • Berls

      Lol! Isn’t that hilarious!? It was definitely a highlight of my week. I’m trying to learn to focus on those moments since the others just stress me out.

  10. Kathryn

    So sad that you have such a hard road to hoe and I agree with you, no first year should have such a challenging child. It sounds to me though that you most likely doing better than you think. I enjoyed your Spanish anecdote. Do go to BEA, you are so right to find things you love in the meantime. I so do not miss weekends when I was teaching, Saturday recovering and Sunday planning. Enjoy the wine!
    Kathryn recently posted…Weekly Wrap. Fitreaders Check In.My Profile

    • Berls

      It’s so frustrating that they put her in my class knowing her family history and that she would be like this. They certainly aren’t trying to make things easy for me. I wonder if they realize there’s no way I’m staying after all this next year!? Thanks Kathryn, I am enjoying the wine and fully intend to keep finding time for the things I love 🙂 Have a great week!

  11. Lexxie

    *BIG HUGS* I am actually exhausted from reading your post, Berls! It is so sad that one kid can make your whole teaching experience hell! It is very hard to figure out why some kids don’t respond to adult authority, and why it’s so difficult to get them to adhere to the rules. I hope you’ll be able to figure out a way to help her change, both for herself and for the rest of your class – and of course for you!
    I hope next week will be better, even with that one pupil back in class!
    And what do you mean ‘tentative’ stuff about BEA? I have my plane ticket to Chicago, and I need to see you there! <3
    Lexxie recently posted…The Sunday Post #49 – A Short WeekMy Profile

    • Berls

      Thanks Lexxie! I know that this student has a bad home life and has been through more than a lot of adults, so i think she’s just very angry at the world and doesn’t want anyone telling her what to do. Oh well, I’ll do what I can and just try to survive it all.

      I know I shouldn’t say tentative, but it’s not 100% yet. I just have to make sure I can pull off all the parts of getting there. But I won’t be missing it because of my job, that’s for sure!

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