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Showing posts from March, 2005


Apparently, in the relm of blogger hell on Friday, all three posts decided to appear at a later date. I wish I could add something pithy, but the week before spring break is a little boring... everyone is ready to get out for a week.

I was out of class all day on Friday, but the sub had left a note saying that everyone was great. Monday I discovered several desks had to be cleaned because of the writing on them and I thought my stuffed cougar had gone missing. The class thought to be responsible for the disaperance pointed to it hanging above the windows. On the real missing front, I'm missing a dictionary (a new one a student gave to me), a thesarus, The Giver, a book on Buddhism and a book of short stories mysteriously appeared in my box after school - note to other teachers. Label everything and let it be known that nothing with your name on it should leave the classroom. It's the only way I've kept what I've got so far.


Ah... Romeo & Juliet, that bastion of Shakespearean drama in high school. Who knew it would expose students to the lusts of homosexuality? I mean, gosh! "Juliet was played by a guy and then they kissed? EWWWW!"

We've barely gone through Act 1, Scene 1 and I've already had to explain about:
Actors act - just because a guy kissed a guy 400 years ago, doesn't mean that Shakespeare, or anyone else involved in the play, was gay. No one really cares that Alexander was gay. Acting as Alexander in a movie does not make Colin Ferrall gay (thank God!). The same goes for Will & Grace.No, the actors who played women during the 16th/17th centuries were not eunuchs. Also, no to describing what a eunuch is - that's why we have dictionaries."My naked weapon is out" is not a sexual reference"Ho!" means now!, attention!or hey!.Capulet is not calling his wife a ho'.A nun is someone who takes vows to never get married, have children and live a good …

Rainy Sunday Afternoon

Actually, it's been raining for the past three days. Welcome to winter on PNW coast - except that today is the first day of spring. I know I'm supposed to get used to it, but I'm really longing for east side of the state.

Last night was a formal dance at school, which I helped to chaperon. It was raining so hard that I actually had to replan my wardrobe. Satin skirt and strong wind with sideways rain didn't sound like a good idea. I really felt sorry for the girls in attendance - hypothermia was a definate worry. It didn't help that the school isn't heated on the weekends, so the building was a goosebump raising 45 degrees. I can't help wondering if the all the dancing was due to the need for heat or if they found really good DJ's. Most dances are about standing around and screaching loudly at the slightest sign of humor. Anyways, good deed done for the weekend.

This afternoon, I spent relaxing at a coffee shop - an hour's drive away, but beggars can&…

Conversation Connection

Over a few pints on St. Paddy's Day, another teacher and I started discussing the whole reading intervention idea and how it should translate into real life. I had been looking at other schools and trying to figure out what they were doing to increase scores and what they hadn't. I mentioned my former high school and their somewhat stellar state reading scores... stellar when compared to our school (nearly 30% higher). Graduation rates are also much higher. When I mentioned the number, my collegues immediate reaction was "well, they probably have more money." If they do, I can't imagine where from - the plant closed over three years ago and there only industry (and I use that word lightly) left is logging and agriculture. In fact, my alma matter has a higher poverty rate, has less than half the student population, and can barely afford to offer extra curricular activities. Last time I looked, the band uniforms were over 15 years old. Also, I've heard that a…

St. Paddy's Day = Fun... right?

Back in the day, St. Paddy's Day was a major holiday for me. The kind I anticipated and planned for during the long winter months. Bigger than Christmas, hands down. I had my employers convinced that it as a religious holiday and was therefore a paid holiday - it was written into the contract. However, since moving back to the west coast it's been a more than a tad blah. Few people get into the holiday and it's usually celebrated the weekend prior to make sure that work week is uninterupted. I still think that half the fun is the fact that one can be jigging in the streets at 9am when one should be diligently working.

My current teaching position seems to determined to beat out what little Irish there is in me. First was starting school prior to Labor Day, ruling out the planned trip to an Irish wedding (and not suprisingly, next year's schedule starts after Labor Day!). Yesterday was the LID day for the district. MOTG, especially since it was all about reading interv…


... until they are standing over the dead body with bloody knife or smoking gun in hand.

I've always wondered about parents who seem to truly believe that their child is perfect in everyway and consistantly bail them out of every problem with no repercussions. Do they think this is a good idea? Do they truly believe their child is totally innocent while looking at the mangled hunk of metal once called the family car or when surrounded by adults saying "no he/she is not, here's the video"?

Back in the day, I went to school with a girl who wrecked a total of 9 cars in a period of three years. It culminated with the dead of her best friend (and ooooo... the rumors on that one said her desire to keep out of trouble actually caused the death) and a quick move to another state. I don't know what ever happened to her, but I'm guessing that little of it was good. Just the guilt would drive me nuts.

On rare occasions, I see it happen and I just want to scream "let t…

Cheater, Cheater, Pumpkin Eater

Since everyone was talking about it at the beauty palor, I guess it's ok to publicize here that the administration for the school is leaving at the end of the year. One person was "interim," so it came as no big shock, although I will miss the support I've received all year. The first year of teaching is no picnic in itself, but I can't imagine where I would be if I was getting no support from the administration. (and the counseling staff - who are really cool too!) As for the others, I heard rumors on one - but rumors are rumors. Schools are rife with them. If I listened or rather, believed any of them, I'd be going insane with panic every five minutes. I am very good at panicking.
Add into this mix the parent conferences. So far, I've had no angry parents and one who told me that although my class was challenging, the student was thrilled to be challenged. That makes two out of 120! By next year, that number will be doubled. I swear it!
While waiting for …
Parent-Teacher conferences start tomorrow.

It's interesting to see the behavior change amongst those who parents will be attending. Those who's parents won't be coming couldn't care less... but those who are, are horrified. Lots of grade checking and asking for extra credit. It would be heartening to see them actually working if it weren't barely six weeks into the semester. No one should be that desparate to raise their grade this early.

My observation went well and I guess I'm to be kept on for the next year... I was handed a supply order form for next year and the district office sent over a form asking if I'm coming back, so I'm taking it as a positive sign. I thought there would be something more formal, but apparently not. What was your experience?
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I've started at least four posts in the last week and all have been eaten by this infernal contraption! Something else to add to my general frustration level - the one in which I generally wish to be rid of everyone and everything.

It should have been a good week; It really is spring now and the weather has been quite nice. Most of classes are going well, but I'm feeling this malaise that makes me just want sit around singing "nobody likes me, everybody hates me, guess I'll go eat worms." *portion removed by author*

While purusing the "Carnival of Education," this headline caught my eye... "What Happens if a Child Leaves Himself Behind?" The entry wasn't really what I was looking, i.e. what to do about a kid who "leaves him/hersefl behind" by refusing to do give even the smallest amount of effort. Seriously, at least one or two of my students per section are too lazy to even cheat. Cribsheets and Spark Notes take too much effort. C…