Way back in August of last year, I vaguely remember saying something crazy like, "I want to teach Saturday School so I can have extra time to help those struggling students." But what I think that what I was really saying was really something like, "If I come in to do Saturday School, then I can clean and organize while those kids work on missing assignments and leave me alone."
You can imagine what has really happened during Saturday School this year in my classroom. The only cleaning happened after I let them do cave paintings. And the only organizing that I have done has been done for 6th grade notebooks and backpacks - which secretly amuses me... the things they keep in those cavernous black holes make me laugh almost as much as the panicked look on their face when I tell them to dump everything out on the floor:)
As this year winds down, and we only have one more Saturday School to go, I have to admit that for the most part I have enjoyed Saturday School. I always dread getting up and going, but once I am there it really isn't so bad. We have one to two a month, depending on the holidays, and I have missed one because I was at a training and another because it the same weekend as the Road to California quilt show. There was really only one Saturday morning that I felt was more policing than teaching - there were two very unhappy 8th graders determined to make everyone else unhappy too (and I was abandoned by Lauren from Life in Middle School :).
Usually, I have the 6th graders and the occasional 7th grader. The rules are simple on Saturday mornings in my class; be respectful and do school work. Having a basically self-contained class on a huge campus, it has been nice to get to know other kids. Along with several of my own class, there are other regular attendees and I have begun to think of them as my "other class." They swing by and ask during the week to make sure I will be there on Saturday. It has been more like RTI than the Breakfast Club for most students. We have made foldables for study guides, reviewed math concepts, done extra time on Read 180 and System 44, and have done the occasional art project.
This morning was especially sweet because several of my own kiddos with missing work really made an effort and made progress. One has been especially tough to connect with, and it felt as if we actually made progress in that area too:)
So instead of cleaning and organizing my cupboard today, I multi-tasked as only teachers can do. I spent the morning explaining how to use a hundreds chart to add and subtract, doing proportions, variable equations, and deciphered vocabulary for Egypt and Kush. Darn those kids for keeping me from organizing! :) Oh well, the cleaning and organizing can wait because in another ten days, they will be onto 7th grade.