Rookie Year: Day 63 Or After The Fall

On Tuesday night I fell down the stairs in my home.

Well, it was really more like I tripped going up the stairs and smacked the corner of a stair on my chest and slid down a little. I bit it hard and my freshly-made-Thanksgiving-leftovers-turkey sandwich smacked into my face, knocking off my glasses. The wind was knocked out of me. I stood on all fours gasping for air and then yelling when the air came back. I took yesterday off and stayed in bed with sore ribs. It was a terrible way to end an awful work day on Tuesday.

I really did not come want to come in to work this morning. Before my first class started I was already composing today’s post in my head, complaining about how tired I was.

And yet, today went great. A little sympathy from the students (and maybe some laughing at my expense, which I didn’t mind–it is funny) helped. A lot of them asked if I was okay. I got so good at dramatizing my stairs story that I even got applause during my final block after I finished telling the story. I told them not to make too many jokes about it, not because I was offended, but because it hurt to laugh.

My classes went smoothly all day except for having to kick one student out. We took notes on finding x- and y-intercepts, practiced finding x- and y-intercepts, and then played a Kahoot about x- and y-intercepts. The nice thing about this topic is that not only is the motivating question easy: “Where does the line cross an axis?”, but the process for finding an answer doesn’t have too many moving parts. My students fatigue when there are too many things going on at once. I try to reduce that cognitive load and help them chunk problems to persevere, but if we get bogged down in chunks then when one chunk isn’t the whole problem they get discouraged. We are still working on it.

There’s only two weeks left until Christmas break after tomorrow. I keep worrying that I will not finish the curriculum before the End Of Course Examinations, but actually there is not much left to teach and learn. I am ending the day much more encouraged than I was at 7:30 AM, but I am still very tired. (And sore haha.)

Thanks for reading.

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