Wednesday, August 30, 2006

a little lunar eclipse

So life in the public system isn't perfect. A few glitches occurred to me on my second day.

Our department meeting was strange. At my previous school, the math department was like an old group of friends. Sure we did our own thing lots of the time, but when we got together it was fun. Our PD day was more of a stress reliever/visiting session over something more on the serious side. Sure there were some minor disagreements sometimes, but there was just an general understanding that everyone was there to help everyone else. I found my first department meeting tense. It was quite obvious that I'm working at a competitive school. I thought at one point there was going to be a flat out argument over which graphing calculators should be bought. Not really cause anyone had any good points, just cause they felt they were "right." Maybe this less friendly environment is because the department is larger than I'm used to (strange when the schools are the same size...) and the age/experience range is much larger. The other thing I felt was odd was that no one offered to help me out if I needed it. True I'm not a new teacher, but I am teaching a new course. Now I know (well at least I'm pretty sure) none of these folks would tell me to get lost if I asked them for anything, but it was strange not to have the offer extended. Maybe I just exude that much confidence. Ya right. I hope future interactions with the dept are a little warmer - maybe I just don't know anyone well enough, and quite possibly people were stressed with better things to do than discuss who has supplies.

We don't get dayplanners!! I live for my teacher dayplanner. True once I get into the swing of things I will neglect it for days at a time, but it keeps me sane when things get stressful. Yesterday, being quite concerned at why I hadn't gotten one yet - and not being able to plan properly without it - I went to see the secretaries. I don't know if the lady I dealt with was new or not, but the interaction was painful. I might as well have been speaking Japanese for the kinds of answers I was getting from her. At first she tried to tell me I'd gotten it. No, no, I don't want a student dayplanner with a teacher sticker on it. I explained it was large and for teachers. She tried to give me the school calendar. 12 photocopied months with the times of soccer games on it. Ummm, not what I want. I'm getting impatient, I have things to do and I need said planner to accomplish it. After some more very confusing and painful interaction with this lady I come to the conclusion that I won't be receiving a teacher dayplanner. Ever. I'm crushed. Seriously, I understand from a budget point of view somewhere I'm sure this makes sense. However, I would have fed myself breakfast that morning if the money saved could have bought me a planner. Bagels and creamcheese I can get myself, anytime. A teacher planner is not so easy to come by. Today, after trying to deal with it, I went and photocopied some blank pages from my dayplanner last year. I much less stressed just by filling out tomorrow. Is making 196 copies and a bagel cheaper than the book? I doubt it. And it's not bound. Sigh. I'll come up with a better system (or if someone could steal me one from another school that would be very exciting) soon.


jj said...

Tee-hee, that was me in university. My first year I did this orientation thru Campion, and got this fantastic day-planner. Second year, got a day-planner from the Students Union. Not nearly as good. I had to make a special trip to steal a Campion dayplanner!

Not So French Girl said...

I may have something for you. I got one at my school. Then I went to new teacher orientation and they gave me another one. I told them I had one. They assured me that was impossible and made me take a new one. So now I have two. You can have one. Let me know and I will keep it for you.