Day #9

On Day #9 of the school year you will find yourself thinking back on the first week of school almost mournfully, thinking, "What happened to those kids who were with me at the end of last week?"  Sure, Day #1 and #2 were really bad, but by Day #5, things were really coming along.  However, all of that is long gone by Day #9.

By this day, the "back to school" honeymoon is over.  No longer are the kids completely overwhelmed by it all.  They're not cautious or scared into quiet submission by now, and their little personalities start to come out.  Some with the more "lively" personalities start acting out, and some just start testing the waters to see what the teachers will do.  Others will just see the others misbehave and decide to try it out, just for fun.  All of this will cause your classroom environment to go straight downhill and leave you to doubt your teaching methods.  You will begin to wonder if perhaps you are now too old to be teaching, and wonder why it is that you really wanted to go back to work in the first place.  You certainly won't see the financial rewards of it, since you won't even see your first paycheck for another month. 

Plus, several things you try will just not work (such as having them pair up with buddies to walk in line), and you will try other things (such as having them hold on to knots on a long rope to line up) which will not work (because you tied the knots too close together, causing all twenty four of them to shuffle along like a mini-prison chain gang, pulling on the rope and constantly stepping on each other's heels.  Then they will stop to fix their shoes, sending the little prisoners behind them into a huge traffic jam and sending most of them off the rope).  In the midst of all of these failed (and very publicly-viewed) attempts, you will begin to feel quite inept at all of it. 

But then you will remind yourself that improvement won't come in the form of an incline, but rather in the form of a camel's back - up and down, and up and down, with the final step being up, of course (I suppose that would be on the camel's head).

And that's how Day #9 goes.

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