Math = Love: A Day In The Life

Thursday, January 14, 2016

A Day In The Life

Today, I present "A Day In The Life of Sarah Hagan."  Yesterday, I wrote down every single thing I did just for you.  I know you're just dying to know how I spend every waking moment of my day.  Oh, you're not?  Well, I guess I did it for the #MTBoS 2016 Blogging Initiative, then.  

This is long.  You have been warned.  If you make it to the end, I will be very impressed.  I'm not sure my life is that exciting.  But, in the interest of being comprehensive, here we go!  

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

4:45 a.m. - Alarm goes off.  Hit snooze a couple of times.

5:00 a.m. - Finally drag myself out of bed to Skype with my fiance.  Let's just say American time zones and Australian time zones don't always play nice with each other.  We just remind ourselves constantly that it could be worse.

6:55 a.m. - End Skype call.  Start getting ready.  This means getting dressed, eating breakfast, brushing my teeth, packing a lunch, tidying up my house, and resetting the thermostat.  I made waffles for dinner the previous night, so I just had to heat up a waffle in the toaster and make a glass of chocolate milk.  I also took my last day of antibiotics for my sinus infection and pneumonia.

7:35 a.m. - Leave for school.

7:40 a.m. - Arrive at school.

7:44 a.m. - Arrive in classroom.  Immediately turn on heater.

7:45 a.m. - Head to teacher's lounge to put lunch in refrigerator.  Talk to coworker who is making copies.  Stand in front of heater in teacher's lounge to warm up.

7:47 a.m. - Turn on computer and open up a million tabs in Chrome plus SMARTNotebook.  Personal E-mail.  Blog E-mail.  School E-mail.  Gradebook.  Blogger.  Tweetdeck.  Box.  Yeah, I think that'll do for now.  

7:49 a.m. - Get distracted by Tweetdeck.

7:50 a.m. - Send a text to the handyman my landlady uses to ask if the plumbers actually fixed my bathtub because it seems to still be leaking.

7:53 a.m. - A student stops by to ask a question about missing statistics work

7:54 a.m. - Answer two blog e-mails

7:56 a.m. - Get distracted by Tweetdeck.  Again.

8:00 a.m. - First period starts with the pledge of allegiance and a moment of silence.  I'm lucky to have planning period first hour to let me get stuff done and ready for the day.  I don't have a ton of stuff to get done today because I was on top of things the previous day!

8:07 a.m. - Make a SMARTboard file for the day with the needed supplies for each hour.

8:09 a.m. - Become very agitated that the time my computer is showing is wrong.  Decide to change the computer time to the correct time to make recording all this stuff easier.

8:10 a.m. - Design a poof booklet for my students to use to practice finding x-intercepts and y-intercepts with their calculators.

8:21 a.m. - Read texted reply to my plumbing issue.  The plumbers did come yesterday.  They took apart my faucet, realized they didn't have the part it needed, and put it back together again.  Should have it fixed by the end of the day.

8:22 a.m. - Type up a set of notes to instruct my students how to find the relative max/min of a function on their graphing calculator.

8:31 a.m. - Walk next door to the teacher's lounge to collect my copies and use the paper chopper.

8:33 a.m. - Fix the green posters that will not stop falling down.  Ugh.

8:34 a.m. - Browse Twitter some more.

8:37 a.m. - Print Algebra 2 Quiz for tomorrow

8:39 a.m. - Decide I should make a poof book for my students to practice finding max/min using their calculator.  This one goes together much faster than the last one!

8:43 a.m. - Back to the teacher's lounge to pick up more copies.  I'm so lucky in that my classroom is right next to the teacher's lounge.  I don't have a printer in my room, so everything I print goes to the copy machine in the teacher's lounge.

8:45 a.m. - A coworker stops in to ask how I am.  We talk about how cold it is.  Then, we discuss grad school since we are both working on our master's at the moment.

8:47 a.m. - Put away all the copies I have made today (and yesterday) in their trays.  Clean off my desk.

8:49 a.m. - Type up two post-it notes of "things teenagers say" from the past week.  I write these on post-it notes as they happen, and then I transfer them to a blog post draft every few days.

8:51 a.m. - Make an answer key for yesterday's Algebra 1 quiz.

8:53 a.m. - Bell rings to end first period.  Turn on SMARTboard and greet students as they enter my classroom.

8:54 a.m. - During the passing period, I decide to try and get my Algebra 1 quizzes from yesterday graded for 3rd hour so I can pass them back.

8:58 a.m. - Second period starts.  Walk my students through more graphing calculator practice.  It takes my students almost all period to work through the six practice problems.  Decide to put the quiz I had planned off until tomorrow.  Tell myself that I need to be patient because learning how to use the graphing calculator is not simple.

9:50 a.m. - Passing period.  I tell myself that I'm going to get some more quizzes graded.  But, a student rolls in my room on her self-balancing scooter board (or hoverboard).  She insists that I try it out.  I refuse, at first.  But, the student assures me that she will hold on to me, and I won't fall.  I hesitate some more.  Then, she starts to list off all of the other teachers who have given it a try.  By now, a crowd of students has gathered to watch me try.  After a quick tutorial and a couple of failed attempts, I stand up on the scooter board.  Not knowing what to do, I just stand there.  Scared to death, I try to get off.  But, this just results in me spinning around in a circle.  The student instructs me that I am going to have to actually lift my feet off of the board to get off.  I do this, and I am so thankful to be back on the ground!

9:55 a.m. - Third period starts.  Algebra 1 works through a set of notes on writing the equation when given the x-intercept and y-intercept.  Then, they take a quiz over writing equations given a table or two points.  While students are quizzing, I take the chance to grade my fifth hour's quizzes from yesterday.

10:47 a.m. - Passing period.  I take advantage of this time to grade sixth hour's quizzes from yesterday.

10:52 a.m. - Fourth period starts.  My stats students work through running two simulations using a random number table.  A bunch of students were absent the previous day when we learned how to do this, so it takes much longer than I intend.  Originally, I had planned to have students do one simulation and then take their quiz.  Half way through the first simulation, I realize my students are going to need another practice problem.  So, I print off another practice problem while students are running their 20 trials on the first simulation.

11:44 a.m. - Lunch starts.  I decide to grade yesterday's quizzes from seventh period before I do anything else.  Then, I follow my daily ritual of putting my lunch in the microwave, running to the faculty restroom, and then coming back to take my lunch out of the microwave.  While I eat my lunch, I read blog posts in Inoreader and browse Twitter.  One of my favorite lunch-time readings is FiveThirtyEight's Significant Digits.  It's a daily (and often humorous) summary of the numbers in the news.  This is probably bad to admit, but many days this is the only news I read.

12:00 p.m. - Start coughing incessantly.  As kids start trickling in my room, they keep asking me if I'm okay.  I insist I am, but I just can't quit coughing.  Decide to make a key for the Algebra 1 quiz my students are taking today.

12:15 p.m. - Set my trash can out in the hall for it to be emptied.  Check a few students' solutions to the 2016 Challenge.

12:20 p.m. - Fifth period starts.  Algebra 2 again.  This class gets farther than my morning class.  While students are taking their quiz, I grade some quizzes from third period.

1:12 p.m. - Passing period.  This time, I make a key for today's Algebra 2 quiz.

1:17 p.m. - Sixth period starts.  Algebra 1.  After students take their notes and are working on their quiz, I take advantage of this bit of extra time to send out my #Teach180 tweet for the day and tidy my desk.  I go to throw a piece of trash away and realize my trash can is still in the hall.  The student who is employed to empty the trash must not be here today because my trash can is still full.  I take the trash liner out, tie it up, and set it in the hall.  I bring my trash can back in and place a new liner in it.

2:09 p.m. - Last passing period of the day.  One of my students who really struggled last semester is one of the last to leave.  I take a moment to tell the student how impressed I am with how hard he is working this semester.  I tell him that it makes me so happy to see him turning in quizzes covered in work instead of blank quizzes.  This means I can show him exactly where he went wrong instead of not being able to give him any feedback at all since I can't read his mind.  I actually start tearing up while talking to this student.  I really am so proud of him.

2:14 p.m. - Seventh period starts.  I give my student aides a few jobs to do.  This is my last Algebra 1 class of the day.  While they are taking their quiz, I start writing my daily blog post.  Today's blog post was about x-intercepts and y-intercepts.

3:06 p.m. - Last bell of the day rings.  As soon as the last student leaves the room, I lock the door and head down the hall to the special education classroom.  I'm supposed to be part of an IEP meeting that started at 3:00 p.m.

3:24 p.m. - The meeting wraps up.  I head back to my room to finish the blog post I started earlier.

3:30 p.m. - Send an e-mail to the blood drive coordinator re: potential dates.

3:36 p.m. - Forward a STEM Day e-mail to my colleagues with an explanation that I won't be at work that week due to my wedding, but I think our students would love it if one of them took it on.

3:43 p.m. - Reply to a kind e-mail from a coworker who is thanking me for having my students write letters.  She received some lovely notes from students, and she treasures the feedback.

3:46 p.m. - Print the next three Algebra 1 quizzes.

3:48 p.m. - Time for an afternoon snack!

3:51 p.m. - Send an e-mail confirming that the Tulsa Zoo will be visiting our Public Library tomorrow for Story Time.  I'm in charge of this.  Hopefully, we have a bunch of kids show up!

3:52 p.m. - Prepare Algebra 1 notes for tomorrow.  Students are required to interpet the meaning of the slope and y-intercept of a graph or table.  I decide to modify some notes from the previous year.

4:26 p.m. - Pick up my copies from the teacher's lounge.

4:28 p.m. - Make a to-do list before heading home.

4:31 p.m. - Shut down my computer.  It's crazy how many files I can open in the course of a single day!

4:34 p.m. - Leave school.

4:42 p.m. - Pull in my garage at home.

4:43 p.m. - Check the mail.

4:44 p.m. - Stand in my bathroom for awhile while I inspect the job done by the plumbers.  My bathtub is not leaking.  That is a good sign!  Turn on the water.  Turn off the water.  It leaks.  Keep standing there, waiting for it to stop leaking.

4:49 p.m. - Send my fiance a message to see what he's up to.  Climb under my electric blanket for a few minutes to get warm.

5:02 p.m. - Wash a sink full of dishes from the previous night's waffle making experience.  My dishwasher doesn't work well, so I just wash all my dishes by hand.  It's not fun.  Though, my fiance convinced me to start wearing gloves while I wash dishes.  I think it makes it slightly more fun, and my fingers don't get all wrinkled.  The best part is I can pull the gloves off when I'm done and have dry hands.

5:31 p.m. - Go through the day's mail.  Decide what to keep and what to throw out.  I ended up throwing it all out.

5:33 p.m. - Put on a load of laundry.  When my hot water tank started leaking this past weekend, I put down a bunch of towels to catch the water.  They now need to be washed.

5:36 p.m. - Take a few minutes to read some blog posts and visit Twitter.

5:44 p.m. - Start writing this "A Day In The Life" post.

6:49 p.m. - Rotate laundry.

6:52 p.m. - Decide I should probably do some more dishes.  I've been putting them off for ages. I also decide to eat a little something for dinner.  The mixed nuts I snacked on after I got home were not going to be enough.  I wasn't really in the mood to cook, so I ended up heating up another waffle in the toaster.  So what if I've had waffles for 3 out of the last 4 meals...

7:20 p.m. -  Time for a shower.

7:37 p.m. - Check Twitter again.  Think I'm obsessed?

7:43 p.m. - Decide I should probably answer a few more e-mails.  Click on an e-mail that says I've been tagged in a post on facebook.  Get distracted by facebook.  Spend the rest of the evening browsing the internet.  To do list forgotten.

9:20 p.m. - Bed time.


  1. Is it weird that I find these types of posts fascinating?! I love getting a peek into people's day. Thanks for sharing yours! I'm jealous that you got to try a hoverboard! :)

    1. I do, too! Loved reading yours today at lunch!

  2. I read it all! Love the idea - think I may need to try it! Can't believe they allow a hover board in your school!

    1. It was fun to do! This was the first time a student brought one to school. The other students mentioned wanting to get one, and she told them that by next year they would be banned at school.

  3. I really enjoyed reading this, Sarah! I thought I was the only one who hated doing dishes! I am also so impressed you got so much done during your planning period. Since my planning is last block of the day, I sometimes have more productive days than others. However, I love my 4th block planning! I also might steal and tweak the "Finding the Relative Maximum and Minimum" notes if you don't mind. :)

    1. Feel free to steal and tweak anything! Then, of course, blog your better version so I can steal it back. :D

  4. SARAH - I'm exhausted just reading this. How in the world do you do all this in one little day???

  5. P.S. So impressed that you get grading done during passing periods- that is making use of every minute!

    1. Some days are like this. Other days, I'm less than productive...

  6. I loved reading about your day and I'm so impressed that you don't waste a minute of your day. It's so interesting to read these posts and see how similar and different our days are! I should hopefully have my post ready to go up tomorrow, I just have to add pictures to it. :) I hope you have an excellent Friday!

    1. Thanks Jennifer! I've enjoyed reading everyone's posts, too!

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