Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Trying to Work Smarter, Not Harder

Do you ever come home from work exhausted, yet feel like you've accomplished nothing?  This has been my feeling on a regular basis over the past few weeks.  I go to work intending to really focus on the ESOL staff, some selected content teachers and of course, my students.  I have been able to keep my vow to my students about keeping them in the forefront, but otherwise feel like I'm drowning.

My school is wrapping up the end of our crunch period as first quarter progress report grades were due earlier this week and student learning objectives have to be uploaded into the online portal by this weekend.  I am not the registrar nor the professional development chair at my school.  I do not see myself as a computer expert.  This has not stopped a good percentage of the staff from requesting my help via e-mail or tracking me down on my cell phone.  I even had people who roll into work twenty to thirty minutes late on a regular basis request an appointment to see me (really?) an hour before our report time to seek advice and feedback.  On one hand I'm flattered that so many people view me as a valuable resource.  On the other hand, I'm exhausted.  

I am sure that once this crunch period is over, things will slow down a bit.  In the meantime, I should see this as a great opportunity to build connections with my colleagues, many who are new to the building.  I can only hope that the teachers who are eager to seek my feedback on their student learning objectives remain open when it comes time to discuss ways to continue meeting the needs of their ESOL students.  On the same note, I hope that some of these teachers continue to ask questions, especially about their ESOL students even if I do have to  continue to respond to a dozen e-mails and text messages by 6:00 AM (I keep my work e-mail on my phone.  Yes, I know it's a bad idea.).  I know that eventually this too shall pass and for now I will continue to keep up with the fast pace and look forward to the day when I can master the art of working smarter, not harder.

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