RealJobs: Michael Madormo

Monday February 7th, was a typically exciting and busy day. I drove to school at 6am and got to work on my lesson plan in the morning.  I had a busy weekend coaching wrestling all day on Saturday and the Super Bowl on Sunday so I was behind on work.  With my co-teacher in the morning, we worked out our plan to teach political machines in the late 19th century.  We prepared our PowerPoint presentation, guided notes, and station activity including political cartoons.  Together, we game planned to make sure that our lesson would be as accessible as possible.  While lesson planning, I was also pausing to respond to work emails and personal emails as much as possible before school kicked up.  I left a few minutes before class started to make copies and my co-teacher setup the room.  Our lesson, which we ran three times in the day, started with picking students to be the machine workers who would intimidate other students into voting a certain way.  It was a role play to get students thinking about corruption and political machines.  Some of my most challenging students got really into being the intimidators and it was fun to see them stuff the ballots.  Then we dived into some note taking on political machines and tried to have a class discussion that did not fall into jokes and nonsense.  After the notes, we had students analyze political cartoons in small groups to practice their knowledge of political machines and how Thomas Nast’s political cartoons toppled the corrupt machines.  It was frustrating that many of the kids were off task and playing around, but many were able to do some high level analysis.  There is never enough time in teaching and today was no exception as we were rushed to go over the answers at the end.  I enjoy 2nd period off to plan with my co-teacher and problem-solve for the week.  I had to figure out how I would run the afterschool reading tutoring session that day because we were trying to implement a new program.  It is normal as a teacher that I do not quite have as much support as I need to implement a program effectively but we have to try nonetheless.  After school, I had to run to a parent teacher conference while my tutoring kids hung out and waited for me.  Then I had them pick independent reading books and I introduced them to the book we would be reading together.  After tutoring was over, I raced down to wrestling practice to help prepare my wrestlers for the state tournament this weekend.  I left there at 6pm and got home at 7pm.  Part of my evening was spent grading and answering emails, and I had a nightcap with my roommates (other TFA teachers) to prepare for the next day.

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