First Year Teacher and I just messed up BAD!!!!!!!!!!

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Jammy, Sep 18, 2020.

  1. Jammy

    Jammy Rookie

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    Sep 18, 2020

    Context: SDC high school teacher trying my best with distance learning. Have a math class and the school is implementing a math program that I received minor training on. School schedule has it so I see my math class 2 to 3 times a week because Monday schedules alternate weekly from classes 1-3 and 4-6 and are shorter by 10 minutes. I was given a pacing guide but I took a glance on it and laughed and never referred to it again because it pretty much required 2 entire lessons per class. My students did not even learn how to use the math program website until this week and we stalled on lesson 2 for weeks. The pacing guide came back to bite me in the *** and I somehow missed an email reminder that I pretty much have to submit the results of my end of unit 1 assessment by tonight when even on the pacing guide it says that the assessment isn't supposed to be until next week. Either way my students will ALL fail it if I had administered it but right now I don't have any assessments whatsoever. Due to the schedule, from the beginning of the school year until now I had 11 class sessions with my students and I was expected to complete a 20 lesson unit in that time when my students could not even access the website.

    So what I have been doing with them this entire time? The first few weeks I did only 1 lesson per class and followed the plans but after seeing the few hw assignments submitted I knew the students did not understand anything at all. So I went back to the beginning and instead went through the lessons very slow to make sure they grasp the concept. Distance learning makes me feel extremely limited since all I could do was share my screen to show students the website since most could not log in and use zoom whiteboard to messily write important notes for students to understand. with math class being so sparse in their weekly schedule they would not retain much information. Each class session would be wasting time at the beginning of class to gets students to try and get onto the website, then me giving up on that and just sharing my screen and taking up lots of time on only parts of lessons because I need to call on each and every student one by one to unmute themselves and respond to my question so that I know they understand the concepts and recently I decided to use the beginning of class to work on IEP math goals. Each lesson comes with 1 hw assignment to do but since I was essentially breaking apart single lessons for them into several mini lessons I wasn't assigning them hw...which is an issue I've been having across the board with my class math and other subjects because many of my students apparently don't know how to submit things or type things and email them....

    tl;dr I ****ed up majorly and did not administer an assessment (and a few others) that I need to submit the results for tonight because I made my class fall behind incredibly far so even if I had administered it this week they would have failed it miserably. Idk how I'm going to face my admin next week........
     
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  3. creativemonster

    creativemonster Comrade

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    Sep 18, 2020

    Ok. There. Done beating yourself up! Be open to the fact that admin might realize you need to meet the kids where they are, and scaffold for where they need to be. give the assessment, and use it to inform your instruction and move on. Sorry you have to put up with people making pacing plan who don't know your students' needs. ...As if we don't have enough we are dealing with! Hang in there!
     
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  4. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Sep 18, 2020

    Just know that you are not alone. Everyone in the country is trying to do their best in this new, strangely odd school year. Be ready to explain to your admin what is happening in your classes, without making excuses. I am hoping admin will not be that upset.
     
  5. Jammy

    Jammy Rookie

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    Sep 18, 2020

    @creativemonster @swansong1 thank you :weary: I contacted my admin today and just fessed up and explained myself but they were very understanding. I'm embarrassed that I almost broke down in front of them but now I'm working on messaging students and getting them to do the work as soon as they can
     
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  6. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    Sep 19, 2020

    I’m assuming you’re in CA because you said SDC.

    As an admin, I do not envy SDC teachers right now. That’s probably why your admin was understanding. Mine is nearly pulling her hair out.

    Hang in there!
     
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  7. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Groupie

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    Sep 20, 2020

    My mom used to say: Everyone makes mistakes. Fools practice them. :)
    I am sure this is a 1 time thing. The way you explained it, any decent admin would understand. It is good to just fess up in situations like that! I made a way worse mistake 1 yr w/ testing....lol, and it wasn't due to Covid craziness. My admin was a bit cranky that day, but got over it. :)
     
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  8. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    Sep 21, 2020

    The major problem seems to have been that the students did not learn the math program in a timely manner. What was the problem with it? I'm sure this set you back even if you messed up the pacing guide.
     
  9. Jammy

    Jammy Rookie

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    Sep 22, 2020

    Well after talking to other teachers in my department we all had terrible assessment results because we couldn't even get a quarter of the way through the unit. Students needed a lot of instruction to just log on to the site. They can log on in a few ways but my students they get lost when something opens in a new window like when an app opens or if I give them a link and they click on it then it opens either in a new window or tab and they say it did not open so then I would have to take class time to help an individual student try a variety of ways to log on...a lot of the time I would give up and just try to teach the lesson without them using the site and even other teachers who did manage to get all of their classes onto the site were still frustrated with the program. I feel better now than I know I'm not alone. I just feel bad for the students..
     
  10. CaliforniaRPCV

    CaliforniaRPCV Companion

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    Sep 23, 2020

    Sorry if you mentioned this above, but what site are you using? Doesn't sound like you would be recommending it. Is the supplier asking for and or responding to comments and suggestions for improvements?

    Or this is just zoom and not Math/SDC specific?
     
  11. Jammy

    Jammy Rookie

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    Sep 23, 2020

    Can't reveal it without doxxing myself but a university in the area developed it I think and my school wants to work closely with them and idk probably a lot of other reasons idk about and idk how effective it would be if we were actually in the classroom with more experience and training using it.
     
  12. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    Sep 23, 2020

    It sounds like your school probably didn't research it or get much information about before blindly accepting it just because a local university developed it. Maybe they are getting it for free to test out. That's not a good reason for using a program that's not very user friendly!!
     
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  13. CaliforniaRPCV

    CaliforniaRPCV Companion

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    Sep 23, 2020

    Sounds like they are paying attention, which is a good thing. But you might be the guinea pigs too.
     
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  14. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Groupie

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    Sep 23, 2020

    OMGoodness! I hated being the guinea pig!
    It took me many years to learn that when a new program came out, I should NOT try to learn it asap. My tendency was to be on top of things, so it was hard to stop, let someone else fight the glitches, get frustrated, call, complain, and find a work around. I never really perfected the art, but got much better over the last 5 years. I found a techie friend who could figure things out and then help me. :)
     

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