Pros: watching students learn and grow positively
Cons: having to take points for inappropriate behaviors, instead of giving points only to those who were behaving correctly.
As a special education math teacher, I taught 6-8 grade math on the National Math Standards which emphasized statistics and algebra. Each day I monitored students before school (morning duty), took attendance – more... 5 times per day. Prepared a warm-up activity or problem, reviewed that, taught the lesson of the day, assisted students while they worked problems, had students work together on math activities, and gave a short quiz after each lesson (about three problems); some days students were progressed monitored to see if they were meeting their math IEP goals. I had to write referrals when behaviors escalated beyond the warning, call, or lunch detention stage. I called parents, graded papers, prepared lessons, prepared tests and homework activities, completed IEP paperwork, set-up IEP meetings with the Sped team and the family, met with the school social worker and psychologist weekly, managed students by providing engaging tasks and earned rewards, clerical duties such as report cards, sharpening pencils, preparing supplies, copying work pages, internet research for class activities and ideas, and calling parents often for upcoming events, student progress and behavior updates. During lunch, students came in for help, detention, or to say hi. After school, I helped at the homework club to assist students with their homework. I stayed late to prepare lessons, organize the classroom, make copies, call parents, and complete IEPs as well as, grade papers and enter grades into the grade book online. I enjoyed my colleagues but rarely had enough time to meet and work with them on future math lessons and ideas. The hardest part of the job was having all lessons prepped and organized for smooth execution 5 times per day. Many activities and lesson prep were needed for engagement of students at high-risk. The most enjoyable part of the day was when students came in to visit at lunch or after school and just chat or got math assistance. Many evening events took place in which I attended to show student support such as sports games, choir concerts, and band performances; as well as, parent nights and other school related functions. Individual plan time consisted but group plan days did not. – less