So this week we got draft one of our new Home Study- I can start looking for grants :) I am excited because the little girl we are matched with has a $10,000 subsidy we qualify for (yes!) But our new agency is one of the more expensive it seems, when i compared a few- so we still have a good bit of fundraising/saving to do.
Because I felt the need to leave the school I was teaching at (my core teaching philosophy did not match their improvement plan, and thus many teachers have left) i am seeking employment specific towards helping at-risk youth. Well I completed a quite lengthy job application and work history with an organization that provides education to students who are hospitalized- in medical and psychiatric facilities. I was called and asked to do a phone interview, that was about an hour long. This interview took place yesterday- in which i ended up crying!? I am not an overly emotional person, I am sarcastic and quick-witted and form relationships based on humor and inside jokes. So when i was asked several questions about the highs and lows of my high school, college, grad school and then two teaching positions all went well...UNTIL i was asked about the high of my first year of teaching. Mind you, I took over when a teacher walked out of a 6th grade class and never came back....this was a rough group. I learned something in my Masters- to teach the roughest group like you assumed they were gifted/honors . So i did. I saw that our Magnet program at the school was doing a big project called Project Citizen in which students brainstorm an issue that is local and affects them and then devises a law or policy change that needs to take place, researches the issue, research the possible changes/remedies, completes a survey of local stake-holders, interviews or questions policy makers and then presents it before a mock city council/school district board meeting. This was a mjaor undertaking for a low-performing 6th grade Social Studies class that thought little of their academic intelligence and even less of me as a new teacher. But we did it...they chose an issue (bus stop safety, specifically dogs roaming, chasing kids at several bus stops and the school board not doing anything about it- they would tell the families to call animal control and animal control passed the buck BACK to the school board)- they surveyed other students who had issues at the bus stops, they questioned our transportation director, they put together a "what to do pamphlet" and ultimately made a great presentation to the judges (mock school board)
They won a big award for their presentation (3rd, but also "best researched")....i just remember when each group presented and realized that they were the only "dumb kids" doing this project they freaked and got really scared.....but they pulled through. It brought tears to my eyes just retelling this story and still does...they were a deflated group- and some still did not perform well in class but this one project showed them what they were capable of. I totally didn't realize i would loose it and break down crying...but my interviewer appreciated my emotion and even said that its often the emotional investment that keeps teachers in the classroom. I would have to agree....plus I got a 2nd interview !!! I really think this would be a great job- challenging, but working with the student population i am most interested in.
On to another fun topic around my house...weight loss. My husband and I have both lost about 8 pounds each with out trying, ...so i thought we (mainly ME) would ramp it up a bit and actually but some effort into this. We both want to loose about 15 pounds....i am partaking in the South Beach diet....i actually eat most things on the south beach diet plan, but then often over do it on cereals in the morning or pasta in the evenings....and it adds up. So i am going to try and stick with phase 1 for about a week, then level back out to phase two,....i don't exercise as much as i should, despite the gym membership....and free child care....so this week i will try and get to the gym at least three times....even if its to get on the stationary bike and take advantage of the free cable and child care!