Yellow Zone

5:40 am this morning is when I gave up trying to stay asleep until my alarm went off. I already had been over my lesson at least 4 times between the time I fell asleep and woke up. You got this. Green zone.

I spent a few extra minutes in the shower to rehearse my lesson in my head just one more time- this is my third observation, third times a charm! I did positive affirmations. I danced to my favorite song on my way into school and got myself ready. It was even a good hair day. I prepped my breakfast the night before knowing I could munch on it while printing what I needed to for the day. I even left all of the tabs open on my laptop the night before so that I could just print as soon as I got in to school. I was in the green zone… calm, cool, collected. But then, the printer had another idea: Hold for authentication. Yellow zone.

Excuse me? I tried and I tried but the printer wouldn’t budge. Think. That’s when the library printer came to the rescue: Printing accepted. I retrieved my papers from the printer, organized what I and my para needed for that morning and was ready to project my screen. But then, the projector had another idea: HDMI NOT CONNECTED. Yellow zone.

Little feet started shuffling in. I was frantically trying to get my screen up but even with all of my efforts, nothing seemed to work. I didn’t turn the music on. How was I going to do morning meeting? No one will be able to see their groups. Five minutes left. What book was I going to read?! They’re so quiet and they’re staring… UGH. Yellow zone.

Fast forward. I made it out alive. I was breathing. My students were understanding and flexible angels as usual. I really couldn’t have asked for a better turnout. I scrambled and it wasn’t the lesson I had rehearsed- but it was real and it was over. Now I can breathe… until my post-observation meeting… when is that again? I’m so tired. Blue zone.

1:00 pm: time to come up with another phonics lesson I can adapt. C is raising his hand.

C: “Miss S., I was in the yellow zone this morning. But we didn’t get to do our usual morning meeting, so I couldn’t tell you.”

Me: “I’m so sorry! Do you want to talk about it now?”

C: “I was feeling really nervous about your observation. What if you didn’t do a good enough job? I was afraid maybe you wouldn’t be my teacher anymore.”

My heart began to melt

Me: “Well, how’d I do? Do you think I did a good job?”

C: “No. You didn’t do a good job. You did an amazing job.”

Green zone.

Slice of LIfePart of Slice of Life by Two Writing Teachers March Slice a Day Challenge! I’m slicing every day this month. Thanks for stopping b


  1. All I know is, in this slice, your writing was in the zone. I could identify acutely with all of the colored zones you described, and C was right: You did an amazing job.


  2. Somehow, from your opening of 5:40 to you closing “green zone,” I thought this was just about perfectly crafted. Bolding the zone colors really worked. (Though personally I would have gotten to red by the last tech glitch.) I always like it when you give us a few sentences to let the kids speak for themselves. Teachers will totally get your multitude of feelings that you describe so effectively here.


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