Even though I've been in and out of school for the past two weeks... today was the first time I really felt like I was back. We had the new Year 9s at school and jeez. It was exciting and draining. I only had 6 of the 7 new Y9s today in my House Tutor group class - but they were so so quiet! It took all my energy to keep up the pace and get them talking.
By the end of the day they were finally and I suppose it properly began when we were walking back from assembly and saw a magpie fly right into our classroom window. Shocking and a little bit funny. Just glad that the bird was okay!!
We ended up being stuck inside while the rain pelted down and could actually think about different things to do. I'd gone through admin, rules and expectations already and I was running out of things to discuss. Then I remembered the three swivel chairs in the back cupboard of my new classroom!! I suggested the idea of chair races - I wasn't sure they'd believe me because my previous suggestion of being allowed to write on the windows didn't go down so well. In fact the girls were first into the back cupboard to grab the chairs out and then I think the boys realised I was actually serious.
Two boys played on them for ages and I found some cardboard tubes for jousting. That took up about 30 minutes. Was pretty hilarious too. Kept telling them to be careful and they were which was cool. They even began to come out of their shells a bit too which was cool.
One of my new students said that his old teacher at intermediate would never have let them do something like that. I asked him why and he told me he had been in an extension class of sorts. Taking the comment I reminded myself that relationships were more important to build on a foundation of respect and fun, and that today was only going to be like this ever - with no classes... I continued thinking up more ways to get them talking.
We did brain teasers, played 'Who Wants to be a Millionaire' with the app on my phone and decorated the class. It is beginning to look like a classroom finally!!
It was good to see them all gelling and getting to know each other. Seeing them asking questions, getting cheeky and getting to know me was cool too. Hearing about their future dreams and aspirations was awesome and I look forward to seeing how they go over the next couple of weeks.
Of course, I must say a huge thank you to our one very committed Peer Supporter in our class! Thanks Britt!! You were awesome today.
Looking forward to a fabulous year with these kids and hope that they gel well with the rest of our crazy, loud bunch :)