Sunday Post | Emotionally Overwhelmed

February 12, 2017 Sunday Post 14

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: Emotionally Overwhelmed

Honestly, it was a pretty good work week. With the exceptions of my usual culprits, the kids were behaving well. I made a change to our class schedule and WOW! It made such a great impact on how our day goes. I wish I had seen it before. We now start our day with Math instead of Reading. I was really hesitant to do this, as I want the kids to get in the less concrete skills before they are feeling super tired. But I used to have Math after lunch and they just don’t calm down enough with a math lesson. So I changed it.

We start our day with calendar (something I used to struggle to have time to get in), then we do some math counting routines, and have our math lesson. They are “let loose” to do Math practice for about 10-15 minutes. Then we have our phonemic awareness activities and do our phonics work. By then it’s time for recess and I’ve gotten in the most important lessons of our day. Yay! I didn’t think it would work, but man – it’s been awesome this week.

After recess, they come inside and get about 40 minutes of learning centers – they get to do learning activities in math and reading – and I get to work with them in groups of 2 to really focus on their individual needs. Then it’s lunch time.

And here’s the real genius of the schedule change. When they come back from lunch, the very first thing we do is read a story. If you’ve never watched a wound up child listen to a story, you’d be amazed at the way their ENTIRE body relaxes. By time the story time is over, they are calm enough to have a lesson – based on the book we just read of course! Gah, why didn’t I do this earlier?!?

The only real negative in my work week has been the hours – oh and a negative interaction with a co-worker (I won’t get into it, but she had me and another co-worker fuming mad!). I didn’t get home even one day this week before 7pm. Just lots on my plate for some reason – and I worked Saturday from 9 – 4. But I’m feeling positive about the upcoming work week. Overwhelmed by how much I have to do, but positive.

We got back some data from our kids middle of the year testing and my kids, along with another kinder teacher’s kids – had the most growth in the entire school! Woot!! One reason I had to work so much this week though was getting ready for next week – because of the data it’s time to start the paperwork process on kids who aren’t performing to standard. I only have 5 (out of 22), and our schools intervention team is going to service 2 of them. Which means I have to service the other 3 – with 100 minutes of intervention time a week. Finding a way to make sure I meet that requirement, while still getting in time with my other students, and getting them on computer programs they are required to spend certain amounts of time on was a BEAST. But I’m pretty sure I got that figured out too.

Next week is Valentines & Parent-teacher conferences. So it’ll be another hard-core week. Wish me luck!

The Politics of it All

The big reason I’m feeling so emotionally overwhelmed is politics. I feel like every avenue of my life is under attack – on a federal and local level.

This week Betsy Devos was confirmed in a historic vote, first time in US History a Vice President had to break a tie for confirmation of a cabinet member. Seeing as she doesn’t believe in Public Education, I feel like my job security just went down the toilet.

Which may not matter, since I may not have a future in the US… not if I want to stay with my husband. Trump’s executive order on Sanctuary Cities is having really scary impacts for immigrant communities. My husband is a resident and I’m terrified for him – for us. Texas is actively enforcing penalties on police departments that don’t “work with” ICE – Austin lost something to the tune of $2 million in federal money for Veterans, disabled and parents struggling with addiction because Austin Sheriff and Mayor refuse to hold illegal immigrants without a warrant from ICE, unless they are wanted for homicide, sexual assault or human trafficking. Our Ass-hat of a governor responded by withdrawing funds and threatening to take more. Grr!

And I know some are saying, well only illegal immigrants are at risk. No, that’s so not true. The difference between an illegal immigrant and a legal one can be the whim of the government. One moment your legal, the next your not. My brother-in-law was picked up by ICE this summer and held for over 2 months as we fought to reinstate his residency — at the expense of over $5000. His crime? Applying for US Citizenship with a misdemeanor on his record from 10 years ago (when he was a teenager).

So yeah, we’ve spent the past week having serious discussions about what we should do if/when his residency isn’t renewed, is revoked, etc. Should we get ahead of it, so he doesn’t end up spending time in prison like his brother did this summer? Should we move to a better state? A different country?

I don’t know what we’re going to do – but I’ve been researching places I could make a good living as a teacher outside the US. I’ve also been looking into possibilities for teaching and living well in Mexico. And I’m stressed to the max. I spent about an hour on the phone with my brother just sobbing yesterday.

If we do decide to stay and nothing happens to keep us from staying, I still have lots of concerns about my future employment prospects. On a national level… but also on a local level, since Texas also seems to be attacking teachers. A bill is being presented at the Texas senate to stop deducting money for union dues for state employees. But then they proceed to exclude all peace officers and emergency personnel… clearly leaving teachers as the main group to be hurt by this bill. The argument is that government money shouldn’t be paying unions. My argument would be, it’s not your money anymore once you’re paying it to me. And how are police officers and emergency personnel’s money any different from my money? The goal is clear, weaken Texas Teacher’s unions that have been taking a strong stance on educational issues – increasingly ridiculous testing measures, pay, insurance, etc – by making membership more difficult to obtain and sustain. The consequence could also be an increase in dues and loss of some unions altogether. If this passes, I could be losing easy access to protection from lawsuits, not to mention a voice in critical issues.

So yeah, feeling very under attack and overwhelmed. I’m scared and emotional. And not at all pleased with people who voted for Trump. If your happy with what he’s doing, take a second and look at how it’s impacting good people. And it’s only 3 weeks into his presidency.

I wanted to share this website for those looking for a way to impact change – It’s called 5 Calls. You pick your issue and they give you five phone numbers and scripts. It takes minutes but makes a difference. Phone call flooding has made a difference in how representatives vote. It’s worth your time!

Blog News

I’m not doing well keeping up with blogging or reading right now – just too overwhelmed…

#FitReaders Update

Got in 3 workouts this week – slept in a bit two days this week. I’m still really enjoying the Fitness Marshall’s workouts though! Eating was hit and miss. Mostly hit though 🙂

Last Week on the Blog

This Week on the Blog Look For:

Sunday

Sunday Post | Emotionally Overwhelmed

Monday

It’s Monday! What I’m reading February 13, 2017

Tuesday 

TTT – All About Romance Tropes/Types

Wednesday 

Confessions of a Virgin Sex Columnist #review

Thursday

Not sure — maybe outlander thoughts, maybe nothing.

Friday 

Just a Few WTZ Books I read

Saturday

Kinderland Reviews: Good Nonfiction

How was your week?

Berls is feeling emotionally overwhelmed this week. See her Sunday Post for why. Click To Tweet Follow on Bloglovin

Berls

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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!

14 Responses to “Sunday Post | Emotionally Overwhelmed”

  1. Bookworm Brandee

    Great news on how the changes you made in your classroom schedule made such an impact, Berls. You know, my kids prefer having math first thing in the morning. Sky and Berk aren’t morning people (Jax is and always has been) but they all say math is easier in the morning. Weird, huh? Anyway, I can definitely see how the book reading is calming after lunch. 😉
    As for politics…can I say I’m happy I don’t live in Texas anymore?? Of course, the country as a whole isn’t doing much better. Scary times, really. I’m sorry you’re in a place where this is all beating down on you. I do hope, of course, that you stay in the country but you know I’ll come visit you if you determine you have to leave. It all just makes me so sad though.
    Keep you chin up, girl! Things will work out some way, somehow. I’m sending positive vibes your way. Love ya!! {{{BIG HUGS}}}
    Bookworm Brandee recently posted…Review ~ Kaleidoscope ~ Kristen AshleyMy Profile

    • Berls

      It’s funny – I shied away from Math in the morning because, while it’s still an important subject, it’s more concrete and thus easier for kids to grasp at this stage. But my kids are doing better in reading than they are in Math, so hopefully catching them while their fresh will help out with that too.

      Well Dallas is calling itself a Sanctuary City, so we’ll see if that really ends up protecting people like my husband or just makes this city a target for Republican Goons. I don’t want us to have to leave, but if he gets his residency revoked I don’t see how we’ll have a choice. If he gets it revoked, I’m sure we’ll spend a decent amount of time with him living in Mexico and me here in the states, which sucks horribly. So I’ll just keep hoping that doesn’t happen! Of course, leaving might be better for me professionally too… grr! But I’m feeling merrier at the moment, since the Trump administration is having a bad week lol 🙂

      Hope all is well with everyone! {{HUGS}}
      Berls recently posted…Outlander Thoughts | S2: E7 My Profile

  2. Literary Feline

    I am glad the new schedule is working for your class, Berls. Hopefully the kids aren’t giving you a hard time. 🙂 It does sound like you have been extra busy as of late. I still get the occasional note home from my daughter’s teacher because of her talking. Mouse was very upset a few days ago because she thought kindergarten ended with the 100th day of school and she didn’t want it to end. That was quite a turn around as she’s been very adamant up until that point that she wanted to skip straight to 1st grade because she didn’t like kindergarten. Haha.

    I am so sorry for all the stress you are under right now, Berls. It’s so frightening right now for so many. I cannot imagine the fear you must feel given your family circumstances. It may not be much comfort, but please know that there are many of us who oppose what is happening in our country right now and are doing what we can to try and stop it or make changes. Sending you big hugs, Berls.
    Literary Feline recently posted…Mouse’s Corner: The Princess In Black by Shannon & Dean HaleMy Profile

  3. Jen Twimom
    Twitter:

    First – great work on the classroom front. Change is scary, but it sounds like you really made it work for you and the kids. *high fives*

    Second – big hugs. I am making my phone calls with you in mind. I am fighting from my end to help you and your family, and all of the thousands of people marginalized, dumped on, hurt by, etc. this administration. I can’t even imagine the stress and fears your family faces. I pray things will improve sooner than later.
    Jen Twimom recently posted…Granite State Authors: Diana RubinoMy Profile

  4. Melanie Simmons
    Twitter:

    I’m so sorry to hear about what happened to your brother in law. Glad it worked out in the end and he was released. I think most of us are overwhelmed by what is going on. The only silver lining that I can see is that people are becoming more active. A ton of women are looking into running for office. I know since this whole thing started and people started looking at 2020, I’ve been vocal about starting earlier. Even before 2018. We must get people registered to vote and to pay attention to local and state elections too. I hope you have a great week. Glad your new schedule is working out well.
    Melanie Simmons recently posted…Review: The Forests Of Dru by Jeffe Kennedy (@mlsimmons, @jeffekennedy)My Profile

  5. Tanya @ Girl Plus Books

    That’s great that the change in schedule has made such an impact. Amazing what simple changes can do! The DeVos nom… I’m still amazed that it passed. Is there anyone less qualified and less of an advocate for public school education? Sorry to hear about all the added stress. 🙁 It’s all so unfair.
    Tanya recently posted…The Sunday Post #44My Profile

  6. Kathy @ My Nook, Books & More
    Twitter:

    It’s good to hear work is going well and the changes you made have had a good impact. We have a yearly conference I help organize and we always put the heavy topics before lunch. We know we’ll lose peoples attention once they have a full stomach lol. I’m so sorry to hear how you’ve been effected with this presidency. This has been awful from the start. No wonder you are so stressed. Take care of yourself and I hope you find a solution that doesn’t involve you leaving the state or country.
    Kathy recently posted…Weekly Wrap-Up #119My Profile

  7. Greg

    Glad to hear the schedule change worked. Nice! And wow you are super busy- just goes to show that caring for kids is no easy task! And I get you on the politics. Betsy DeVos is from here in Michigan so we know all about her. I’m not sure you could find someone more unqualified to lead the Ed. dept. But hey she donated a lot- that’s all it takes.

    Sorry to hear you’re thinking of moving. I’m hoping that none of that comes to pass in the hopes that court orders/ protests/ the integrity of local officials puts a stop to all this.
    Greg recently posted…Sunday Post #181My Profile

  8. Kathryn Trask

    Ah what a lot on your “worry” plate. The govt here were picky about our union too, and now the union collects fees directly so govt can’t mince with it.
    Your country’s people surely are being terrorised from the ruler of the USA and his hench people.

    When teaching I always had a story after the lunch break when they would come in hot and sweaty, even at the 11-13 yr age group it worked well. Sounds like your change has been very effective. Yay you.
    Kathryn Trask recently posted…Always. Sarah JioMy Profile

  9. Katherine
    Twitter:

    I’ve always been impressed with how story reading calms kids. I’ve used it so much on my own actual children and I’ve also noticed a genre trend based on their skill level. My younger daughter and my 7 year old are both very logical left brain thinkers. My 7 year old’s favorite subject is math and he’s crazy good at it. Both of their favorite genres are mysteries. My 7 year old gobbles up The Boxcar Children mysteries and we just started reading an A to Z mystery at bedtime and he’s fascinated with it. My older daughter is very visual and artistic and she’s drawn much more to myths and legends or more fantasy (not science fiction at all though) books. I know that’s not scientific but it seems to hold true for them.

    Like Michelle I don’t talk politics but I am so sorry that you’re under so much stress and worry. I have a friend who is from Peru and is dealing with some struggles to get her citizenship dealt with quickly.
    Katherine recently posted…This Week in Reading – February 12My Profile

  10. Michelle
    Twitter:

    I am glad you had a good work week. Only a couple more months and FREEDOM!!!! 🙂 Sorry you got mad at a co-worker, it’s hard to work with people who make you angry. I do that everyday, but we sort of talk now after 3 years of not speaking to each other. I’m ok with it since I don’t like him anyway 🙂

    I don’t talk politics, I’m not happy with anything going on. I am sorry it has gotten you so worried.

    I hope you have a great week, Berls! Miss you a lot! Plus text me back damn it! 😉
    Happy Reading! ox
    Michelle recently posted…Book, Snow and a Birthday ~ WIR & TSPMy Profile

    • Berls

      My phone is on the fritz. It turns off whenever it wants and sometimes my messages get to people and sometimes they don’t. I did text you back – thanks for the message about my about me 🙂 You’ll probably get the message next week lol.

      Yeah, I need to tell you what happened with my co-worker. I was so steaming I had to yell for like 15 minutes, venting to get it out of my system.

      Hey the bonus, instead of visiting me in Texas, maybe someday you’ll visit me in Canada, Mexico, Switzerland Scotland, or Australia (the places on my list right now).

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