Tuesday, August 14, 2007

They're Starting to Freak Me Out

We have two full days of school under our belts.

And truth be told, this group of kids is starting to freak me out. Big time.

Because they're being so very, very good.


Case in point. Every year the first thing all my kids are taught to do when they walk in my room is to look at the schedule on the board, and then get out their agenda and fill it out, copying the information I have on the board. Every stinking year, every single class period, every single day, I have had to walk into my room and tell the kids to "please get out your agendas and fill them out." Some kids have had to have a personal invitation to do this.

So today as I walk into my room from watching the hallway, before the first period bell even rings, I get ready to make my daily announcement only to realize That Every Single Kid Already Had His or Her Agenda Out...and was filling it in. Correctly.

Okay. This is an aberration. Has to be.

Except it happened second period, it happened third period, it happened all day.

It gets better.

Students are supposed to take their agendas home every night and have their parents check and sign them. So today, during our MOST period (it's a twenty-two minute block of time after 3rd period where we work with the kids on organizational skills, study skills, check agendas, etc.) I'm checking my kids' agendas and every parent but one had signed off on the agenda. The kid who's parent hadn't signed was profuse in apologizing because his dad forgot to do it even though he left it out for him.

Oh. My. Gosh. Even the parents are following directions. Usually I'm lucky if 50% of my parents bother to sign the agendas. This was, well, freaky. Wonderful, but kind of unsettling.

I'm guessing that a lot of the credit goes to our sixth grade teachers who have, obviously, taught both parents and children the importance of using the agenda. Bless their hearts. They did a fantastic job.

But then again, could this just be a really good crop of kids? Or am I going to regret saying this in a week or so when their true colors show?

Because if they really are this good, this is going to be an incredible year.


EnglishTeacherMe said...

Wanna trade? I haven't even met my students yet, and I'm willing to trade them for yours. That sounds a little too good to be true! As a student teacher, I'm curious how you are reinforcing this good behavior? Also, have you done anything different with this batch of students that you didn't do with previous ones?

Mrs. Bluebird said...

I've only had them two days so it's hard to tell if this is for real or not. As for reinforcing their behavior, I bragged on them big time and told them how awesome I thought they were...and I meant it. They were fantastic. I haven't done anything different, but I think we may have hit a class that's used agendas before, beginning with elementary, and are now so used to it, it's second nature. Plus our 6th grade teachers obviously worked with them on this.

nbosch said...

I just read your first and second day blogs...I'm smiling. It could be the hot fudge sundae I was eating while reading...hmmm...no it was your entries.

My husband and I went to the local swimming pool everyday this summer and at least once a week I'd mention to him that I thank God that there are people who will teach middle schoolers. Watching their posturing and insecurities around the opposite sex drove me crazy!! I ached for the fat girl who tried to look comfortable in her skippy suit and the skinny boy trying to impress the girls as he approached the diving board. Yikes, the rude way in which they spoke to each other--you could just see them trying to fit in.

Thanks you for teaching them. I hope your classes are as good as they first seem. If they aren't you'll still love them and make a difference in their lives. And continue to like and nuture those nerds. They need people like you. I've taught gifted kids for 23 years.

Kristine said...

Cool! Hope it stays good!

ms. whatsit said...

I felt the same way about many of last year's seventh graders. They proved to be very delightful until toward the end of the year when they started to morph into eight graders. Though they weren't so perfect toward the end, they did make for a mighty fine class.

teachergirl said...

Mrs. B: The same freaky thing is happening to me. They are listening. They are following directions. They are having their agendas signed. They are freaking me out. But after last year, I'll take it. Thank you to the universe for shaking down a good crop this year.

Jennie said...

freeeeaky. But hey, I ended up with the class from heaven last year (I think it was to make up for my other class...which was NOT from heaven). Sometimes the stars align.

Have fun with them!

ms-teacher said...

I have had a couple of groups of really great students that I have had the pleasure of teaching. It has been during those times where I have felt I really got to teach the way I want to teach because I didn't have to deal with behavioral issues. It really makes all the difference in the world.

I hope they continue to be good for you!

Miss A said...

Wow!!! Give part of the credit to the 6th grade teachers, part to the parents and part to the students themselves. What an awesome thing for you!!! Awesome! I'm hoping to get my kids there by the 3rd week of school; i hate reminding them every period of everyday what they are to do. So you've got a batch trained and ready to go. .. awesome!!! WTG!!!!!

Miss A said...
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