Monday, April 23, 2012

The final countdown

I have officially embarked on week 32 of my pregnancy and I am so excited to be finishing out the year with my students before this baby arrives.

It has been such a wild last few months. Having all of my students aging out at the same time creates such a strain on the brain in trying to plan ahead.

If I could wave my magic wand, I would wish for 100% support on the home front in the transitioning process and with that support for my students to continue working post program.

Many of my students have only known public school since they were 3-years-old, so breaking out into the real world of unstructured schedules is tough.

At a network meeting last week, a presenter told us we, as 18+ program teachers, need to be giving parents a blank schedule at the beginning of the program and having them really look at what they want that students daily schedule to look like when they complete the program. I helps to build better IEP's and keeps everyone realistic in expectations. Great idea!!

Everyday is a learning opportunity as an 18+ teacher and the more of us there are swapping ideas, the richer our programs will be!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The mountain tops and slumps

While I would like to paint the picture of being an 18+ teacher as fun 24/7, the truth is, it's not always rosy.

Disappointment is one of the absolute worst parts of being a teacher at any age level, but it really hits you hard with this type of program. Having a student just walk away when they show so much potential, being lied to repetitively, or having to do damage control from manufactured rumors between students and outside sources can get me down faster than anything else.

It is all very trying and many times it's additionally stressful in trying not to make it a personal fault as a teacher, but rather simply a bad decision made by adult students.

The peaks are, of course, the breath of fresh air that help re-gain focus. One such example is me asking a student what she wants for graduation and getting a teary, "Just a pair of shoes nobody else has worn." Yes, I cried too...more like sobbed at the humble request.

It only takes one special moment every once in awhile to erase the bad situations, and that's what fuels me to stay in education. I hope you all have those too.

Concession Stand Fun

Early last week my program decided to take on the task of running a concession stand for our districts 2nd Annual Special Olympics Track Meet.

What an undertaking! One if my students was so bored in his "guard the money" duties that he decided cat naps would help pass the time. I had to share this picture because it's do priceless!

This was our first concession stand so there was a slight learning hot dogs sell (and bring a better profit return) and candy is too expensive to NOT sell out of. I believe we made all of $25 due to a lot of product purchased but not sold, so we are making notes and plan to strategize our concessions better next year!

The silver lining: we had a blast!

New doesn't always mean better

Hi Blogger friends! I bet you think I've forgotten about my blog...I can assure you I haven't. For the past month we have been without Internet at our brand new facility. I'd tell you all the excuses reasons I've been given, but neither of us have the extra free time to read through it. So I'm hoping we will have it back soon and I can catch up on picture-posting and blogging about all the exciting things going on in our little corner of the world.
My home computer doesn't have the photos loaded onto it, so I rely heavily that connection for pictures from the camera, instead of my iPhone.

In the meantime, please watch our Twitter roll!