Today I graded from 9 to 3. About an hour of that was spent enjoying a visit from our friend, and an indeterminate amount of time was spent taking minibreaks online. But for the most part, it was grade, grade, grade.
I got all emotional early on when a kid who was a steady D and F student in most of his classes when I taught him in 7th, and 8th, and now 10th grade, actually turned in a well-put together persuasive essay that earned him his first ever passing score on a writing sample, and got him a solid C in sophomore English. We're talking he went from a 2.8% first semester to a 76% this semester. One major factor is that he started going out with a girl who isn't into dummies. The two of them stayed after school in my room a couple days a week nearly all semester. And I think then he started realizing--hey, I can actually do this. We started the semester with me pre-teaching him the next day's stuff, so he could really focus in class and get it done. Then he went to just checking in with me regularly about what he should be working on next to keep his grade up. If he spaced out in class, he'd come by after school more regularly. If he was doing his work in class, I wouldn't see him after school until another big assignment started. At this point, I don't see a huge future in writing for him, but he learned now to structure the basic 5 paragraph essay, and he learned that if he doesn't get behind, he can actually pass classes. And he did get beyond the really superficial stuff in his writing, so I think he also learned a little bit about what it's FOR, how you can think things through and express your thoughts by writing.
Of course, the kid on the other side of the room went from a 2.8 first semester to a 1.6 this semester, so I have yet to unlock the secret key of reaching all students. Well, I know that hot girls who like smart boys are helpful, but I'm not sure how to keep a steady supply of those around.
How is this adoption related? Well, I had to get it done before the trip, and I did, so yay me. And yay, continued employment. They take this grading thing pretty seriously at the high school level. I understand there's some ritual involving credits and graduation that people put a lot of stock into.
Then we went to the library and made printouts and copies of all the documents we're supposed to bring with us. One of my fears is being in some lawyer's office and them gasping, "You don't have your EJQ 79723 form?!?"
My sister brought us a casserole, because I stopped cooking last week. Jon has been supplying us with pizza and Chipotle dinners. Ironically, I am perpetually STARVING. You'd think I was pregnant. But I can't find time to cook. So Pat brought us an old family favorite, called Father's Delight. She pointed out they chose that on purpose. Jon was delighted.
Jon went to Home Depot to get stuff to fix our bathroom sink. I went looking for a Court Dress. Luckily, it's just Civil Court, not Royal Court, so I started at Ross, then went to Fred Meyers, where I found a nice summer dress that a) does not make me look like I'm smuggling a bowling ball and b) does not make me look like my sisters in pictures from my babyhood. Seventies prints and maxi lengths seem to be in, at least if the grocery store clothing racks are any indication.
See, I SAID it would be fairly boring. Kudos to you if you stuck with it.