Last year, I was drowning in paper work and was struggling to keep on top of it all. Honestly, I was thoroughly exhausted at the end of it. To make matters worse, not only were we expected to switch over to the New Curriculum but we also had to write about the core competencies. Needless to say, I did not know what I was doing with the core competencies. I put something together quickly so that I could get my students to do a reflection. I have to say that this was a total disaster as many of my students could not understand the language. I made the mistake of taking the information right out of the curriculum. Nevertheless, after spending a great deal of time explaining each of the concepts for only one of the competencies, I gave up. I used the one that we worked on and managed to add their responses into my report in record time. Was I proud of myself? Absolutely not!
This year, I vowed to do better. At the beginning of May, I made a checklist in my notebook of all of my students, and all of the tasks I had to do involving each of them for report cards. It sounds daunting but once I got started, I was on a role. After the checklist of was complete, I took a couple of days off to relax and then started working on a few comments at a time. During one of my breaks, I realized that my core competencies from last year were not going to work for this year. I spent a couple of weekends typing out different versions of what I thought might be best for my students and was finally THRILLED with this one.
While my principal was kind enough to only ask us to have our students reflect on one of the competencies, I decided to have them work on all of them because I wanted to see what they thought about themselves and their development. I dedicated one lesson each Friday to reflecting on one core competency at a time. On the last written page, I divided that into two days so that my students had ample amount of time to think and write. Besides the students who were sick, we finally completed all of our reflections today.
I am also pleased to say that after weekends and spare time during my preps and mornings, I finally completed the draft of my report cards. My principal just proofread them today. I will make the necessary changes on Monday and print them out. After that, it is just a waiting game so that I can assemble their folders and get it ready.
For now, I need to start slowly cleaning up my classroom for the summer break. I feel RELIEVED that at least one thing is out of the way. Please share your thoughts and ideas so that we can all learn from each other.
What does this have to do with YOU?
Report cards are daunting because not only do you have to put in so much of time and effort into it, but at the end of the year, it can be even more difficult once you realize that these may be the last few words you will ever write to or about your students. I totally get it!
However, instead of waiting until the last minute and staying awake all night to complete them, start working on comments for a couple of students at a time today. Set aside 30 minutes to an hour with a small break in between. I promise that it will make a difference. Starting today will REDUCE your stress levels and give you the much needed SLEEP that you definitely DESERVE. To reduce your workload, pick up a copy of your core competencies by clicking the link.
Please share your thoughts and ideas and remember to “Create, Experience, and Teach from the Heart.”
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