Posted in Education

Teaching and Learning

As a special education teacher, I am so delighted to say that I love my job and I am learning about providing my services in the private schools.

Right now I am collecting forms which allows the child to have special education known as SETTS.  These forms need the parent’s signature as well as my signature to which I fax to my agency. That same day, I start seeing the student either in the classroom (push in) or in my classroom (pull out).  I teach and review their teacher’s materials and/or worksheets.

I work in a Catholic School which runs from kindergarten to 8th grade. I have various students from different grades, and there is one class per grade.  On Mondays, we attend mass for the first period. The children participate by joining choir, the offering of the gifts as well as being lectors.

I am enjoying my time with the students and school.  I am still learning about my students’ needs so they continue to flourish within the academia world.

Pax,

Lupe

 

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Posted in Education

Many options for Special Education teacher

This week, I have two interviews lined up.  I still have my side gig of tutoring, which keeps me motivated and keeps me creative.  I want to share about my journey in being a teacher because if you know someone that has the same feelings that I do, then please let them know there are so many options out there for teachers.

  1. Tutoring – We all know that the education system is messed up.  There are many students that do not do well in mass education.  Tutoring is a great gig. It helps with having an interaction with an individual as well as their parents. Also, there are many agencies that specialize with students with disabilities as well as publishing their own tutoring books.  You can make your own hours, and be creative in lesson planning.
  2. Babysitting – There are agencies that want special educators that have experience taking care of students with special needs. You are basically getting to know a child in the home environment, you can make your own lesson plans, and interact with the parents.  Sometimes it could require housekeeping and cooking.
  3. SETSS agencies – I am trying out this.  Basically, you are working for an agency in a school environment.  It could be a push-in (where I will be teaching a small group of students in the general teacher’s classroom) or pull-out (where I could take out the small group into a resource room).  You get a higher pay depending on how many students are in your classroom, which varies from agency to agency.

I will share more in latter posts about my experience in the SETSS agency. Please keep me in your prayers as well as sharing this post for anyone that want other choices in their teaching careers.

Pax,

Lupe

Posted in Mirror of Reflections

Moving On

I decided that I will move on from charter school.  I began working for a particular charter school about three weeks ago.  It was full of orientation, preparing the classroom and getting to know people. There were certain things I should have foreseen, such as:

1- Why are there so many new people?

2- My co-teacher has no experience in teaching and flaked out from a fellows program – spoil alert – big red flag.

This week, I realized that I am going to leave the position.  It wasn’t an easy decision since I have invested my time and energy.  I had hope and an optimistic view into this new journey . However, I realized that when my co-teacher became an associate (sort of like a teacher’s assistant), all the burden would be on me with 27 students (some with IEPs).

I realized that stress was building up inside of me, the daunting task of managing behavior as well as assessments. I still love teaching and I still believe in education. Maybe, mass education is not for me.  Maybe, I am going through the wrong route.

Then I realized I have strengths. I loved tutoring one to one student, giving my undivided attention, differentiating lesson plans, and speaking with parents.

So I am going to be a full-time tutor, and make a difference in that way.  I am also considering a brand new hobby and growing within the social media into new avenues.

So stay tune,

Lupe

 

 

Posted in Education

Special education

I have been working in schools for about 6 years. Two years as a teacher’s assistant, one year as a substitute teacher and two years as a self contained bridge elementary teacher. For this coming school year, I will be an ICT teacher.

Now what do these terminologies mean? Glad you asked.

Teacher’s assistant/school aide/associate teacher: This means that this particular helps the teacher. It could range from paper work, to decorate and/or cleaning up the classroom to teaching in small groups as well as managing students’ behaviors.

Substitute teacher: Whenever the teachers are in meetings/sick or have some other reason for not coming in school, then they hire a substitute teacher to come in.  Substitute teachers could have lesson plans already prepared before hand by the absentee teacher or they could have their own worksheets just in cause.

Self contained: This is a small class with a maximum of 12 students.  All of them have IEPs and have some type of disability (it could be learning, behavior, biological and/or physical). There are teacher’s assistant because sometimes students need that one to one assistance.

Bridge: It is when there are two different grades combined.  So the last school that I worked for was a bridge self contained class in order to have the maximum amount of students.

ICT: There are two teachers, one is general and the other is the special education teacher.  This environment will probably have a maximum of 28 students, however there will be about 8 children with IEPs.

IEP: It is a legal document that follows the special needs child. The special education teacher is responsible for implementing within the lesson plans and exams.  The special education teacher needs to review and renew this document to see what type of services should be in place.

This year will be the first year that I will be working in a charter school and an ICT teacher. I am a bit anxious about working with another very new teacher.  I feel honored to help a fresh new teacher.  Then I will work with a math teacher for that particular subject area, and I can’t wait to learn new teaching styles.

Pax,

Lupe

Posted in Guardian Women

Stress reliever

Last week I began my orientation at a charter school.  I had to really adjust with the time differences between public school and charter school.  There are long hours however, I do believe it has its perks such as having free happy hours, breakfast and at times free lunch (Italian and Mexican food).

I was thinking a lot about how to relieve some of those stress that teachers have.  Here are some advice that I have:

1- Join a group that have the same interest as you do.  So I signed up to meetup.com.  There was a Catholic group that I used to join but I realized that the travelling as well as time conflicted with my schedule.  I am into hiking, jogging and excising groups that is convenient due to it being close to home and time.

2- Get a pet.  So once I get my paycheck I do plan on buying a pet. I am not sure what type of pet I will get…but it will be a surprise. Animals are non-judgmental and they  bring comfort.

3- Write in your journal. I have a journal that has biblical scriptures.  It does help in releasing stress. Before each entry, there is a sentence prompt that helps with meditating.

4- Prepare for the next day. Always have your clothes ready. Set that alarm clock. Go to bed early.

5- Talk to someone.  I have no idea what happened today but I had a chat with my mom about some concerns that I had about the school year.  She reassured me that everything will be alright.

6- Clean up, organize and plan. Stress happens when there is disorganization. Have your agenda, schedule and environment as organized as possible.

All of these advice is what works for me.  So I hope everyone of you had a restful weekend and a fantastic week.

Pax,

Lupe

Posted in Bookworm

Charlotte’s Web

I remember watching this old classical movie when I was a child and repeating the words as well as singing along with the characters.  I just finished reading the book, and I would like to share a brief summary of what the book is about and why you should read this book.

The book is about a pig by the name of Wilbur, who is about to be killed by Mr. Arable but all of a sudden was saved by Fern’s determination and persuasive.  Then Wilbur is moved to Mr. Zuckerman’s barn, where he encounters more barn animals. He learns that he will probably be killed again for food until the itsy bitsy spider by the name Charlotte comes to the rescue.

I don’t want to create any spoil alert about the ending, but as you can tell it is a children’s book which talks about the meaning of friendship, life and death.  There are two movies where one is a musical animation and the other a live-action/animated movie.

I will write more posts on books that I have read and enjoyed.  Please share any children’s books that I would enjoy by posting the comment below.

Pax,

Lupe

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Posted in Mirror of Reflections

Ups and Downs

I have been learning so much from my cousin’s baby.  Yesterday, she learned how to balance on her two feet for a couple of seconds until she fell right on top of me. Today,  she had an infant walker in front of her.  She is able to pick herself up by bending both of her knees and lift herself up with her upper arms on the walker.  She accomplished the goal, which was lifting herself up from the floor.  Next, she puts herself back on the floor by bending her knees, and slowly releasing her upper arms from the walker.

She kept on bringing herself back from the floor only to release herself from the walker back to the floor. I jokingly told her granny, “you see that is how she keeps herself fit by exercising the way she does”.  I suddenly released that she was trying to practice on how to balance as well as positioning her body.

I am not sure why I thought to myself “she is practicing on how to pick herself right back up after going down on the floor”

I realized this is how life is, by going through our own ups and down be it in relationships, work, school and life in general.

Pax,

Lupita