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oh, the GUILT

We have our state testing next week: reading on Monday and math on Wednesday. It is the first time my 3rd graders will be taking it. Most of them don’t seem to stressed now, but I imagine that will change the minute they ask me a question when we are in the computer lab (we’re doing it online) and I can’t answer. Let’s just say that independence was a goal I had for this group this year that I have not succeeded in.

THE POOR THINGS. I try to ease my responsibility by reminding myself of the many things that are true about my students: they came to me much lower than grade level, I’ve seen them grow and learn, I do have a highly impacted class with 30% SpEd, ELL or both. Sometimes teacher friends hear my groaning and say, “Oh, it’s your first year! It will get better!” and they are right, of course (I HOPE). But my heart just sighs wearily and I think, “It might be my first year as a classroom teacher, but it isn’t my students first year in third grade.” This is it for them. This is their third grade experience. AND I WANT IT TO BE GOOD.

By my actual standards, if I am being honest, I will likely never measure up. I want to be the BEST TEACHER EVER and the likely hood of that happening is slim; I know this in my brain but not my gut desire.

My students will not get great scores on this test. Hopefully they will have a positive or neutral experience. Hopefully they will know that their effort and improvements are noted and appreciated elsewhere.

I’m planning a light week due to the testing, with very light but fun activities for the testing days in particular. There is no time limit, but students typically are finished by lunch. I hope they smile and I hope they have some fun and seriously, I mean SERIOUSLY, I hope I haven’t failed them and that I’ll be even better to my next bunch.


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