September 23, 2008

master multitasker....

Definitely being a middle school science teacher is not for the faint of heart. I just finished up a density lab that would make mere mortal men (i.e. non-teachers) run away screaming and wish they had their mommy close by. In each class I had around 30 kids broken out into 8 groups going in all different directions, mixing liquids, measuring things, whipping around glass beakers like pros all while I am wondering around making sure nobody is stupid enough to actually take somebody's bet to try an drink the corn syrup.

I remember being in the corporate world and having so many people brag about their "multitasking skills" - and frankly I was one of those arrogant bastards. But you do not know multitasking until you are in charge of a room full of teenagers who are just waiting for you to be looking away so they can get away with doing something they know they should not be doing.

It is almost like an Olympic event with my opponent trying to get away with something and me trying to catch them....pitting skill against skill....will against will. And the fact that the odds are 30 against 1 tells you just who the professional is in this game even though our side does not always win.

People are always getting hurt at work like getting carpal-tunnel syndrome for typing too much or getting a thrown out back from lifting heavy objects. I am just surprised that teachers do not get "eye sprains" from having to look at sooooo many different things in the room all at once. Come to think of it, this is probably why I sleep so well at night because my eyes are just so happy not having to look at anything for 8 hours.


Betty said...

Teaching is definitely about multitasking. There is so much going on that it makes your head spin, literally. Of course, this is a good thing because you can then really keep an eye on things. One of my friends and I used to joke that we needed to be enclosed in one of those large hamster balls so we could quickly roll around the classroom. She was also a middle school science teacher.:)

JUSTICE not "just us" said...

Any emotionally challenged students, autistic and learning diabled students on your roster?

Man, I think you need a paraprofessional for the lab lesson.

Mr. McGuire said...

density lab that would make mere mortal men run away screaming

For some reason this quote reminds me of my language arts class sometimes first thing on Monday morning. The only question is who is more dense, my students or their teacher?