My Frantic Day6:50
Receive an email from a teacher who waited until the day of to ask if she could use the conference room off of the media center for parent teacher conferences today- Answer her that the conference room is reserved on Thursdays for the physical therapist because there are no other rooms available in the school-as stated multiple times in faculty meetings as well as posted on every faculty meeting agenda.
Leave for work.
Arrive at school and put lunch in refrigerator.
Log into circulation computer and open email.
Set up Google Classroom for 4th grade lessons today which involved creating an announcement in Google Classroom with links to Nearpod and any websites I would like the students to have access to after the Nearpod lesson.
Set up table for classes by arranging them to closer to front of room. (I love that our new tables are on wheels and take advantage of that when I have large classes coming for lessons. I like to rearrange the tables so that students are as close the Promethean Board as possible without crowding them.) Think about the fabulous Digital Safety and Citizenship lessons that are going to take place today and think to myself how much I sincerely love my job.
Begin Open Checkout. Direct Wildcat Assistants (5th grade helpers) in their morning duties for the Media Center. Talk to the Assistant Principal about Read for the Record and discover that she cannot be a guest reader because an AP meeting was scheduled for today. (Luckily our principal stepped in to take her place.) Find out from the AP that the physical therapist is not coming until 1:00 so the teacher can use the conference room until then. Let the teacher, who has already begun her conferences in the "kitchen" room behind the circulation desk, know that she can use the conference room, but she decides to stay where she's at which means I do not have access to my bathroom or the refrigerator where my lunch is kept. Take a deep breath and try to remember that I love my job.
Begin checking in about 300 books for the classes that are scheduled for lessons today as well as books returned from students coming for the morning open checkout and books returned from teachers. After checking in books, go through them to look for damage, stray marks, anything that needs to be repaired and make note of that, adding fines if necessary.
Discover two books that are wet and upon further inspection feel that it is due to some type of urine. Put books in a ziplock bag and head to that student's homeroom to ask the student about the books only to discover the student has a dog at home that sometimes goes in her room. Yep-dog urine! Stop in the lounge on the way back to the Media Center to wash my hands. Sigh- remind myself, again, that I love my job.
Continue checking in books and running overdue reports for students who will be coming for a lesson today. Greet guest readers for Read for the Record. Give them a copy of the book and their schedule for the day. Spend a few minutes talking to them to welcome them to the school and thank them for their time.
Turn on projector and get ready for the first class of the day to arrive
Assign students to tables as they arrive and begin the lesson. Tell parents as they come in during the lesson where their conference is taking place because not only am I a teacher and a librarian, but apparently I am also the conference secretary today. Direct support teachers who have come to join the parent-teacher conferences to the correct room, interrupting my lesson to do so. A second conference begins in the conference room usually reserved for PT on Thursdays since no one else is using it, distracting the students during the lesson. Wonder to myself, and not for the first time, what would happen if teachers were asked to have conferences in their rooms while they were teaching. Sigh and quickly remind myself that I love my job and redirect the students' attention back to the lesson.
Assist students in finding books to checkout. Thank the teacher who is helping with checkout as this is a very rare occurrence.
Rearrange tables for the next class. Begin the next open checkout time of the day.
Finish checking in books that weren't already checked in and continue inspecting them for damage. Upon finishing checkout, run the rest of the overdue notices for the other classes coming to the media center for lessons. Continue to let parents and teachers who are coming in for conferences know where the conferences are being held.
Planning Time- or rather shelving books time After shelving about half of the books, stop to make copies of more bookmarks after noticing that my first class wiped out the Halloween bookmarks that I had put out at the beginning of the week. Run to the front office to use the closest bathroom. Then hurriedly check my email and answer one from the secretary asking about a kindergarten student's library book. Check the shelves for the book making sure it didn't get skipped when checking in books and do not find the book. Email that to the secretary. Continue to let parents and teachers who are coming in for conferences know where the conferences are being held.
Lesson time with a first grade class teaching them the parts of a book; During the story time part of the lesson, one student scratches her leg so much that she has to go to the nurse for some medicine. After storytime, the students head to their table where one student vomits all over the table he is at, covering a library book in vomit in the process. Hurry and grab a barf bag and then rush the student to the nurse, leaving the class by themselves because I have no other choice in this instance. Head back to the Media Center to finish helping students choose a book and check them out.
Surprise! The physical therapist is here...early. Luckily the conference that was in that room earlier has finished.
Continue shelving books while a custodian cleans the vomit off the carpet and sprays the table with hospital grade disinfectant. Have conversation with a teacher who is walking to the laminator about why I am rushing around and why I look so frantic. Am told for the 3rd time today that the laminator is about to run out because apparently I am the only one who knows how to change the film on the laminator. Take another deep breath and remind myself, yet again, that I love my job...maybe.
Get ready for a third grade class to come for a quick 15 minute checkout
Decide since that third grade class hasn't shown up that they are not coming-continue to shelve books
Sneak into the "kitchen" area off of the Media Center to wash my hands, get my lunch and warm it up while the teacher who is using that area for a conference room has a break between conferences.
Eat lunch at the circulation desk because the "kitchen" area is being used. Check and answer email again while I am near the computer and do a quick Google search for jobs that I could get with a Masters in Media besides being a Media Specialist. Decide that Information Resource Specialist and Technical Information Specialist are worth looking into further.
Reset tables for the next class that is coming and set up Google Classroom with the Nearpod link and other links students will use for the lesson.
Teach lesson about Digital Safety and Citizenship during which one student tells me that he was a victim of bullying at his previous school. Try not to tear up while telling the students in that class #youmatter and to not let anyone tell them otherwise. Have students put their hand over their heart to remind themselves that the are alive and are worthy. Let them know they have people who care about them and who they can talk to if they feel upset or unsafe. Feel honored that a student felt comfortable enough to let me know of his past experiences and make sure to tell that student that I am glad he is here at our school. Remind myself that lessons like this are why I love my job.
Help students select books for checkout and check students out with the help of the same teacher who helped out in the morning class
Check and answer email- one which is again about that missing library book that the parent has called about several times today insisting that the book is not at home and must be at school. Double check the shelves once more to be sure that the book hasn't been misshelved.
Last class of the day arrives with a substitute. Pass out name tags and settle the students down for story time when a student grabs another student's arm and proceeds to chomp down. Quickly escort the biter to my office where I call the front office for help because I don't have a walkie talkie or an intercom button to press because apparently my job doesn't warrant me having either. (Can you tell by this point I am kind of over it all?) Have the counselor and another teacher escort the student who was injured to the nurse and the biter to the office; resettle the students and continue lesson ending with checkout. Try not to faint with shock because the substitute came back 10 minutes before class was over to help monitor students at the tables while I helped students with selecting books-unlike this class' actual teacher who usually shows up 2 minutes before class is over even though I ask her every week to come back 10 minutes before to help with monitoring students during checkout. Remind myself that I love my job and try not to cry.
Open for the last open checkout of the day; sit down to do some much needed reflection on the day- reminding myself once again that I really do love my job. Think about the positive things that happened today and think how I was able to complete the day successfully-even with all the craziness that happened. 109 books were checked out. Students got books they want to read. A student who was bullied at his previous school felt safe enough to share that he was bullied at his last school. Our school has an awesome community that pitched in to be guest readers for Read for the Record. We have new furniture because of the generosity of PTO that allows me to create a better space for learning. I am able to deliver lessons digitally and provide links to resources that students can have access to outside of class because our county provides Chromebooks to 3rd-13th graders. I am very blessed to work in the county and at the school I am- even on frantic days.
Greet son as he comes in from dismissal only to find out that he had an accident in his pants; quickly run to the clothes closet that we luckily have in our school which also happens to be in a room off of the media center and grab a pair of underwear. Because the "kitchen" area which also has the bathroom is still being used for conferencing, rush my son to the bathroom in the teachers' lounge and get him cleaned up. Use that bathroom while I am there. But it's all good. At least I have other options for bathrooms when needed.
Return to the Media Center to change the laminator that has finally run out of lamination. Email the bookkeeper to let her know we are down to our last 2 boxes of laminating film.
Check and answer email once more.
Walk son over to his classroom to get his library books and return with him and his friend who build forts with fabric that I use for book displays and the tables and chairs in the Media Center. Sigh. To be a kid again. Decide to write this blog post to remind myself that what I do is hard, but it's also rewarding. Delete the bookmarked websites about Information Resource Specialists and Technical Information Specialists I had bookmarked earlier.
It's not an easy job being both a teacher and a librarian, especially when not everyone gets what all is involved day to day in this job. #needforadvocacy On days like today I try to remember that there is a reason why I was chosen seven years ago, out of all the interviewees, to be the Media Specialist at Moreland. Yes, it was a crazy day. Most days in the Media Center are. But when I get up in the morning and am still happy to go to work ready and eager to make a difference, I know that, even on days when I look frantic or days when I want to find another career or days when I want to cry several times during the day...I really do love my job. And I am where I need to be.