I decided I didn't want to do much work with my kids today since yesterday was awful for them and me. So I did a quick review with two classes and then started an in class project that had them drawing and counting and building. I had to go around facilitating all the groups, but I didn't have to do any real teaching which was a load off of me.
Then the awful class from yesterday got greeted today with a classroom filled with row seating. This really threw them off. I drilled into them that I have no problem failing them if I here even a peep from them. Then I made them arrange the rows into tables and line up in the back of the room while I seated them. I really took control of the situation. They were a million times better today. It also helped that the worst kid was out! But I asserted my authority and I think I gained a lot of respect.
So for the used-to-be-awful-class (I'll call them U2b) I tried something different. I gave them really challenging functions to work out while I helped the struggling kids with the basics. I gave them only 2 homework problems for the weekend and told them that we could all leave home happy today. As they acted up, I added more homework problems. All it took was one time, and they quieted down.
And then for my last class, I tried to keep them challenged and ended with a game. But I have to work a little harder for them because there is a big range of talent in that room, everywhere from special ed to kids who are really really smart. I'm going to have to make more of an effort to differentiate better.
But anyhow, today went really well, and it's actually supposed to be my most intensive day. I was really impressed with how I brought the teacher 'tude to the classroom, and the change it made in my kids. And even more impressive, my principal and AP visited my room at the end of the day to ask me how it has been, and also to make sure I didn't want to quit! I'm sure even if I did, they would've done anything they could to help me.
I left the building today with a big smile today. I'm sure next week will be full of it's ups and downs, but I know I can survive!