Although my new job at a preschool doesn't officially start until next week, this week the teachers are organizing their classrooms for the new year and I've been assisting.
My job description has changed a bit since I was hired. Instead of being in just one class, I'm splitting my time between two rooms. One of the teachers (in Classroom A) has been at the school for many years, but the other one (in Classroom B) is new to the school. Most of my tasks this week have been with Teacher B. Since both of us were unfamiliar with the building, we lost a bit of time finding things like the art supply closet and the stash of office supplies, but it didn't take long to learn the setup and we got started.
I put together a bulletin board, which is something I haven't done for decades. I found, though, that the necessary skills weren't lost, just buried in the recesses of my brain. When I was done, the bulletin board was a colorful representation of the room's theme, complete with cut-out letters, student names written on construction paper cutouts, and tissue paper flowers for a 3D accent. I set up a filing system, organized craft supplies, and stacked games in a closet, then browsed a jumble of unwanted materials in the foyer and carried several armfuls of goodies back to Teacher B.
I was also able to assist Teacher B in setting up an Excel spreadsheet to track student attendance. Her computer used a newer version of the program than I'm familiar with, so it was challenging to navigate through all the features. Another challenge was that the laptop didn't have a mouse, so I was forced to muddle through with just the touchpad, but eventually the job got done.
This school emphasizes small-group teaching; there are always three adults circulating through the room while the students are there. I was pleasantly surprised to find out that I'll be doing more than classroom setup and cleanup each day. Teacher A told me that each day next week I'll be supervising several activities (including doing my own materials gathering, setup, and cleanup). She prepared the plan for the first week, but I got to choose several activities to lead the second week. My suggestion for expanding one of the activities was quickly approved.
I'm looking forward to relaxing tomorrow and Friday because I suspect I'll be busy next week!