Thursday, April 30, 2009

Stress


Now comes the stressful part of the year.

Right now I am stressing over next week's AP exam. The kids tell me to relax. They say I am the only AP teacher that is crazed. I suppose the other AP teachers have more confidence in their ability to teach and get the material across. I am so afraid that there will be things on the exam that I didn't cover or didn't explain well enough. I know that in the scheme of things these grades have no affect on my life but knowing I didn't do a good enough job or that I could have done something better is not something I want to live with.

I haven't taught a regents class so I am used to being stress free once the AP exam is over. This term I have two geometry classes. If you have been reading any of these posts, you will know I don't have great expectations for a high passing rate. Again, they are weak students and I know I shouldn't care, but I do. My ego will not withstand low passing percentages. I can't bear the tears of the kids that work and don't succeed. I know Mr. AP will blame me.
There is one positive aspect of all this stress. I can't eat when I am upset and the extra weight I gained while on vacation is flying off. At this rate, I will be able to fit into my old size 3 jeans by the end of June.

3 comments:

17 (really 15) more years said...

I understand exactly how you feel. No matter how hard we work with the kids- well, like my AP said to me today, it's a crap shoot- we, and more importantly, the kids, are at the mercy of the test. What I did do immediately after the test was to survey the kids and ask them where they felt they were lacking, what we could have done more of, less of, etc. Maybe your colleagues are so full of themselves that they fear nothing- as for me, I'm not that full of myself, I always look for what I can improve.

Size 3???? PO'd, I haven't worn a size 3 since- well- never, lol.

Rick Patterson said...

I know how you feel.
Last year's crop of AP students resolutely refused to come in for seminars in the weeks leading up to the exam in European History (my area) and, in spite of keeping them on a distribution list and sending them study materials to bone up and review and practice, well...we had precious few 3s and a lot more 2s.
The result was that it was my butt hauled in to talk to admin about why there was such a low performance and what I should be doing about it. When I asked that the review seminars be made mandatory (because some of the kids haven't been over the material in 2 years), I was told that I couldn't do that if they weren't actively registered in my class and even then they had band and clubs and sports and...
I then asked why the low performance was such a big deal if nobody wanted to do anything serious about it. No response.
This year I started with 13 kids registered for the AP European History exam, of whom 9 have shown up for any seminars at all, and 7 are away this week on a band trip.
I will be holding seminars every day next week after school before the final (on Friday) and I am not holding my breath about the results.
Am I losing weight? No. My mind doesn't weigh that much any more.
Cheers and good luck to your kids!

And where are you travelling in the Canadian Rockies? I'm in Calgary, which is right next door, as I hope you know.

Rick Patterson

Ricochet said...

I teach remedial math and our big test is in 2 weeks. I've been reviewing for 2 weeks - and cannot get them to get serious for a test in my class (average quiz grade 50, average test grade 59 - and it was identical to the quiz WHICH I WENT OVER THE DAY BEFORE THE TEST). Two did not turn it in, 5 didn't put their name on it. Can you guess how I think they will do on the state test?