Monday, April 20, 2009

last week with seniors

That's right. This is my last week teaching American literature to seniors at Bolivar. On Tuesday we'll have review for their final exam which is Thursday morning. I'll spend next weekend getting their final grades figured.

It's been an odd year of teaching. It isn't over yet - I'll still have one section of sophomore English after the seniors finish classes - but I've been reflecting on what I have and have not managed to do in the classroom this school year. I was (sooo) grateful for a long maternity leave but that meant that I left to have my baby just as I was getting all the Juan Franciscos and Maria Alejandras figured out. So when I came back in January, I had to relearn a number of names. Which is just embarrassing. I think that I covered some good literature with the seniors: Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer, the expected but still Great Gatsby by Fitzgerald (and an excerpt of Nickel & Dimed by Barbara Ehrenreich to discuss American reality), and the memoir Night by Elie Wiesel. We read a variety of small nonfiction pieces, had several good discussions. I guess I'm happy. Every year I think: this is the year I'll get it together enough to do EVERYTHING on my syllabus. I need to make a shorter syllabus.

Depth, I hope, if not breadth.

And, like I said, it isn't over yet. I'll have my sophomores through mid-June and I have plans for us as a group. I want to end the year well. It's bittersweet to think that I won't be teaching next year.


Nate said...

my last meeting of the school year is on june 20. i will have to settle for the minor compensation of reaching june 20 before you do.

Joie said...

Just thinking about "not teaching"... I ran into some HS students last weekend who asked me if I'm teaching again now (since I was in the school building), so I answered, "yeah, i'm teaching Will the alphabet and Annie how to talk" - :) it's different, but wonderful and I hope that you find it surprisingly sweet to be out of the classroom. I hope that you find the whole world open up for you and claire to learn about God's goodness in deeper ways than you can imagine these days. Enjoy each day, though, as you close teaching for a season - I'm impressed that you made that choice. Love, Joie

Angela and David Kidd said...

Love all three of those books, especially Night. Sounds like you taught a great class. And that's pretty funny about remembering names, I'd be terrible as well. I'm great with faces, terrible with names.

N.D. said...

What will you do next year? It sounds like you are enjoying it.