Before I start, I’d like to note that if I have to change my password every time I try and log in here (because I’m an ijit that doesn’t remember her password, but only for this one site), I’m going to be very grumpy at myself.
That being said, it’s time to update the larger world out there as to pre-Institute haps. I’ve had some changes (read: complications) during this process. I’d like to start by saying that Newark TFA office has been nothing but 100% helpful during the entire process. Earnest emails of inquiry upgraded at one point to a panicked phone call, and they were helping me out at every turn.
The panic was a result of being COMPLETELY AND UTTERLY UNABLE to schedule a Spanish: Content Knowledge test anywhere within quite literally six hours of my house in Ithaca, my boyfriend’s house in New Jersey, or my parents’ house in Massachusetts. “Why?!” I thought as I bashed my Spanish Content proof of Knowledge-seeking head against my desk. Turns out that New Jersey at least, and I suspect much of the country, is in a shift between two Praxises (snobby voice was, in fact, activated for that word): the Spanish Content test and the Spanish: World Languages test. So, in a sort of passive-aggressive way, NJBoE and ETS have said, of course, sure, they’ll accept the Content Knowledge exam…but they won’t offer it anywhere for me to take. So a few phone calls were made, and I will be taking the (conveniently more expensive) World Languages exam which is offered on computers by appointment. That came with its own new set of problems, namely that it’s offered for four days in February and the next test date is in freakin’ JUNE, and I thought I was signing up for March/April tests so I came really late to the game and there were NO seats left ANYWHERE so I’m taking it about 4.5 hours away, in a room above Penn Station in NYC, on a Monday. Holy inconvenient Batman.
This brings a whole slew of other issues with it, for example the fact that this is a brand-new test and there is VERY little study material out there for it. Even the ETS people are trying to sell me their $20 guidebook with no full-length tests or means of scoring myself. It’s shenanigans I tell you, and I won’t stand for it. It also appears to be a much harder test than the previous one, specifically in its inclusion of several speaking and long-answer sections. SO. My strategy is to brush up on my essay and letter vocabulary (Sin otro particular, le despido atentamente…) and talk some to/at/with my hispanohablante friends. And it’s in TWO WEEKS PEOPLE. So yeah. It has kind of pushed the Elementary Education: Content Knowledge exam down on the totem pole of Things To Worry About.
I also forgot to mention last time that there’s another test that I need to take, an over-the-phone Spanish oral skills test that I have yet to schedule but need to do soon. I’m not really worried about it, but I hope I do well.
Institute packet coming in the mail soon! I kind of want to get some of the swag on the TFA site (namely, the bag because my schoolbag broke and I can see using it while I teach anyway) but I don’t know what they give us as Institute. Any CMs out there with some insight?