I'm horrible about updating, but I like waiting until I actually have something to say.

This stretch of 6 days (from last Monday to this coming Monday) should be the most stressful time of the school year. Monday is my Praxis III, but I'm actually completely ready and it's more of an inconvenience than anything. I don't like that I'm having to miss class for the interviews. I've filled out the silly Class Profile and Instructional Profile probably about 20 times between my time at UCA and this year with the mentoring program. It gets old. How many times do I need to prove myself? It almost seems as though it will hurt me to have done it so many times just because I do it less thorough each time-- again, because it's old. I have to try to get in the right mindset by Monday and remember that it's this lady's first time to see me. She hasn't seen the 20 others that I've done!

Tuesday was neat. Let me start with a little background. Every first year teacher is required to have a mentor teacher. The mentor teacher gets paid to be the mentor. There is a time requirement that we have to meet, and there are several required observations, etc. All mentors have to be trained. They go to a training that is put on by the state, and they watch a video in order to learn what to do as a mentor. The video is of a mentor teacher and a first-year teacher doing their thing-- the pre-interview, the observation, and the post-interview. Just like the Praxis.

The state's problem: they only have videos of elementary teachers and mentors. No secondary.
Solution: they select my mentor and me to go through this process so they can make a video for high school teachers.

It was incredibly fun. I got nervous the morning of, but once I got there it was a breeze. It was hilarious, though. We had to wear three different outfits, one for each video segment, to make it seem like it was done on three different days. Apparently most mentor teachers and first-year teachers do the interviews and observations across three days, but we always squeezed it into one.

For the recorded observation, I chose my 4th period class because they are dramatic, outgoing adolescents who love to be seen and heard. They are amazing, but there were incredibly amazing that day. I was so impressed that I had tears in my eyes later. Many of them dressed to the nines for this occasion. They were so proud to do it, and I was so proud of them! And let's be clear: this was no rinky dink video camera. There were three massive ones, along with a sound board and lots of other equipment that I can't name, in my classroom for this lesson. It had the potential to be intimidating, but we all had fun.

The days leading up to it were quite stressful, knowing many people across Arkansas would be watching this video, but really, that's no reason to be nervous. I got over it quickly, especially since I had several weeks to think about it. It's sole purpose is to train mentors on how to go through the whole process and how to be a helpful mentor. Many of them have no idea how the interview process or observation should work, so that's why they need videos.

So now I have my Praxis on Monday, and I've just been chilling all weekend. I've wasted too much time, I'm sure, but this has been one of my most relaxing weekends in a very, very long time. Life is so ironic. I just don't get it... and that's why I love it!