Onward, to Enterprise School
This week I began teaching at Enterprise School, grades K-12 housed on the same campus in two separate buildings. I teach 3 sections of 7th/8th grades mixed and 1 section of 10th-12th grade English. This year, Enterprise High School will graduate a class of 39 seniors. I’m trying to get the stats right now: How many have applied to college? How many will join the military? How many will volunteer or take a year off? How many still stay put?
Even though this is the biggest school in Wallowa County, each grade is so small and there are so few teachers to offer multiple electives per day, that grades are often combined for budgeting and scheduling convenience. “It’s nice,” their teacher tells me, “because all the teachers know each other and we all know where our students are at any point during the day.” Then she reflects a little… “But it’s challenging because in a 7th/8th class you can end up with a student still struggling at the 6th grade level with things like spelling and reading comprehension. Then, in the same class, you have a really talented student who could be in AP English at the high school level.”
By the end of my first day, I see what she means. Lucky for me, it’s my job to get in and get out and have some fun between. With writing, that usually means good stories, invigorating prompts, and a little adrenaline rush at the end through a (lovingly) forced open-mic for a small audience of their peers.
Stay tuned for (yes, more train writing) student quotes, simile samples, and a few teaching tips by the week’s end!