I'm somewhat mellow tonight. Not really worked up about anything. Just chilling. It's probably because today I had an extremely rare experience...I had a whole day without students. No, they weren't having a skip-day...they were all with their new teacher.
Due to some overcrowding in another grade level, we were able to hire a new teacher. The powers that be decided that Senor Newbie shouldn't be placed with Exit-Level students (these kids have GOT to pass the state test in order to graduate). Instead, Senor Newbie would get my classes...and I would get the overflow kids. I was all for this when we first discussed the plan....who wouldn't love having more mature kids? What I didn't realize was how difficult it would be to a)tell the kids they were getting a new teacher and b)say goodbye to the little knuckleheads.
Now, don't get me wrong. There are some of them that I did the HAPPY DANCE to wave goodbye to. FREE AT LAST!! These are the Mambo-children. (see previous post) Those kids pose their own special worry, since I'm pretty sure they're going to eat the new guy's lunch. Especially considering he's a brand-new teacher. Very subdued...very serious...somewhat timid. Oiy vey. Dios Mio. Holy Moley. (Hold on a sec...I need to light a candle or two for him.)
Okay. I'm back. Wait. Now I have to call the stupid fire department from all the candles.
This has been in the works for a while. I purposely waited until I knew the hand-off was impending before telling them. I mean, come on now. I'm a good teacher....but I'm also a realist. It would have been anarchy, true and simple. I found out 2 days ago that Senor Newbie had been hired. That gave me 1 class period to break the news, tell them where their class would be meeting (he's floating...I'm keeping my room --small victories), and convince them that they better be good or "God Help You".
Let me tell ya. The reactions ran the gamut. There was joyous dancing, outrage, apathy, as well as some out and out pissed-off kids. This was all very flattering. (Especially the kids who were doing the joyous dancing b/c they didn't have to have me hammering on 'em all the time!) The ones that really got to me where the ones who looked at me with those sad little eyes. One girl said, "Miss, it's just not right. It's like we're puppies and you're giving us away." Tempted to tear up (which would ruin my reputation as a hardass), I said, "Well, at least I'm finding you a good home, and not pulling a Cruella Deville!" That made 'em laugh and we were back on track.
Senor Newbie came by my room after school today. Whoaboy, did he look tired. Apparently, last period put him through his paces. I felt for the guy. I mean, hell...they made me consider hari-kari on a daily basis, and I've been doing this gig for A WHILE.
I guess, if nothing else, this experience will help him decide if he truly wants to be a teacher. It's probably best he figures out how hard it can be now so he can make an informed decision. Granted, he may need to be medicated as a result of dealing with that last period...but hopefully the medication won't impair the decision-making process too drastically.