Well, the first week is over and I survived. Monday we had parent meetings. There were 4 different meetings and parents were able to come to the classroom in small groups at an assigned meeting time to go through a kind of parent orientation. I went over my rules, routines, school procedures, what to expect, etc, etc. Tuesday and Wednesday I had 1/2 hour appointments with each child to screen them so that I know what they are coming in with academically. I always go over the information with the parent afterward so that they know how their child did and where we will go from here. As usual I have one who doesn't know the difference between a letter and a number as well as a couple who are already reading. The screening gives me an idea of where to start with each child. It also provides me with a tool to show growth over the next couple months.
Thursday I had 9 kids and Friday I had 7 kids (2 didn't show up due to being out of town). We are fortunate to have this staggered entrance so that we can go over rules, routines and the cafeteria in small groups. It is definitely like herding cats. I'm nervous to see what Monday will bring. I've already spotted certain behaviors that will have to be curtailed and yes, I even had to use my ugly voice.
Now, let me just say that by Friday afternoon I was thoroughly exhausted and the day seemed really long. I have one little guy who has never been to preschool or even left with anyone other than mom. He spent all of his free choice time walking around the table. I finally got him to sit briefly and draw a picture (scribble since he's never used crayons before). When he was done he got up and walked around the table some more then came and told me that his mother was waiting for him. I assured him that we only had a little while more. When I called for the kids to clean up he was the first to grab his lunchbox and was ready to head out the door. We went through the routine of getting our backpacks, putting our STAR folder in our backpacks, making sure our chairs were pushed in and our seats were neat. I explained where everybody was going to go (parent pickup in the hall, bus and YMCA kids with me). I had a couple that just couldn't get through their heads that they were NOT getting on the bus but going to YMCA after we dropped the one child off at his bus. Anyway, I put the parent pickup kids name hats on them and took them to the hallway and sat them down. I just couldn't figure out why no one else was heading out yet and then it hit me. I was an hour early! So feeling stupid but explaining that even teachers make mistakes, I sent them back in and let them go play at stations. They were thrilled. Maybe by next week I'll learn how to tell time. lol Well, at least I made it through the first week. Only 175 more days of school..haha