Have you ever gotten on that amusement park ride that your kids love, but you look at with trepidation?  You are sitting there thinking to yourself that this may not have been the best idea and suddenly, you are screaming like your life depended on it?  Yeah, that’s how I’m feeling right now.

I don’t think it’s much fault of my own, but that feeling to rolling and rolling and rolling with no way off has just swamped me.  Part of it is where I live.  No, I’m not a mega-farmer, not do I even know how to drive a real tractor, but between the various critters we have running around this place, there’s a lot of work to be done.  The garden areas that I have are quite large compared to many gardens, and all need to be shut down, fertilzed and the like.  Bales need to be moved, fence needs to be put up, heck, we bought a truck last weekend and that takes time too!

Add to the mix of this fun country living daughters who are ober-active in things.  We just got done with swim season where we spent many hours driving back and forth to practice that is 35 mintues away, dealing with a coach who changed her mind on things way more then a coach should have.  Our oldest daughter comes home telling us she’s volunteered to play in the pit band for the musical, which is fine, but all this week she’ll be doing 14 hour days at school doing basketball then walking to musical practice.  Guess who takes her to practice and picks her up from practice?

And I’m feeling swamped by Common Core types of items.  I feel good about my math program that we’ve started.  It’s hard for the students, but I feel in the end it will be a great prep for middle school.  I know I’ve only scratched the service of the program, but when given one day of training over the summer, it’s hard to feel like you’ve been properly introduced as well.  The literacy/ELA core is what’s stressing me right now.  Our reading series does not align well, and I struggle with that creativity piece of putting things together.  Our writing is gaining some momentum, but it’s still hard to push the “rigor” when my students aren’t there.  And my schedule is on a six day cycle.  My social studies and science time during that schedule: two days, 35 minutes each.  I know I’m doing a HUGE disservice, but yet, when the directive comes down.  I’m forcing my creativity gene (or lack there of) to work overtime, trying to shift some of the science/ss into literacy time, and that might work, but goodness, it just makes my stomach roll writing about it.

Yes, this is a bit whiny, and I apologize for that.  I work so hard to keep myself positive for my co-workers because I know they are struggling with problems that my little class doesn’t have.  Sometimes, you just need a place to vent, and if you read this far, thank you for lending me your ear. And if you’ve not connected with me on Twitter, please do so! I am @AnIowaTeacher, and would love for you to be part of my PLN (personal learning network).  Twitter has been my lifeline to sanity as if I didn’t have my network, those awesome, amazing, crazy, grumpy, goofy people to fall back on, I’m not sure what shape I’d be in, but it wouldn’t be good.  If you don’t have Twitter, what are you waiting for?? This is your invitation to try it out!  I over tweet, I’m quite sure of that, but the people I’ve come to know are very cool, the chats are especially inspiring, and it’s just a great, free  way to keep your own learning going forward.

I’ll leave on a funny note: I coach 8th grade girls basketball (another stressor) and it’s me and 28 girls.  Not ideal in the least, but we are going to make it work.  Anyway, we were talking about our offense and being able to read defenses.  One of the things we stress is keeping the movement going and setting girls up for backdoor cuts.  My statement: “If you sent your defender up right, you cut off her rear and right to the basket.”  *dead silence then a gym full of giggling*  I looked at one girl and say, “Well that didn’t come out quite right now did it?”  She about died! 🙂

If you are feeling that weight like I am, know that you are not alone, and that we together will make this work.  It just make take a little laughter to get us there!