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It's my third year of teaching--and my third building. My first year of teaching was spent in a neighboring county: an experience I never will forget. Yet...I've just entered my third building in three years.

The old school needed repair. It was outdated, the heating was unreliable, the paint a nice shade of 1970, the windows broken to the point they would guillotine when oppened. Not to mention we did not have central air and, being a "year-round" school (the technical name is "balanced calendar"), that meant we began August 1 and ended June 8 or later. It was time for a change, and that change came with the building of a brand new facility, one actually split into a middle school AND a high school like it was supposed to be. Left, boxes labeled and ready for the move.

The weeks before Christmas were spent packing up our rooms from top to bottom. This period of time may have been one of the most taxing I've seen for my nerves: other colleagues were experiencing this, too.

Initially, we should have been in the new school in 2011, I believe, at Christmas. The building was two years later, over budget, and our move-in dates were continually changing.

It was worth the wait.

Below, image of the old classroom.

Now a true 7 - 12 school, our building is split into a Middle School and High School wing, complete with an auditorium (we did not have one before); teachers' lounges and workrooms for the first time ever; breathtaking science labs; more parking; an auxillary gym; and a "big gym" for sporting events. Additionally, we have some of the most state-of-the-art technology and heating/cooling in existence. Below, view of the classroom from back right corner.
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As a teacher, this is what the new school has brought me: more space for my 6'8" sophomore; larger desks for the 230-lb linemen; the addtion of a nine-period day and, in response to this, a Theatre I elective (which I am teaching); and 100% more storage in the classrooms. I am able to feel far more professional than I have yet felt to date. Left, view of the  storage in my classroom (SSR books in the crates, binders by period below, books bottom):

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The students took a little bit of time to adjust: many of our students respond poorly to change, very much appreciative of that which is "comfortable". Within about a week, however, the students were more excited than nervous about their new school. Left, Student Station complete with missing work folders, miscellaneous supplies, and turn-it-trays.

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Left, indoor walking track near completion stage. The walking track is now operational and I use it frequently!

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Left, auxillary gym.

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Left, "big gym". The lines are now painted. I will post a picture of it in its completed state soon!

 


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