Thursday, February 03, 2005

Goodness, it's a MIRACLE!

I think I had a pretty good day today!

Let me preface this by saying that Big D is now in PM school (that means students come after regular school lets out and are NOT in regular school), the Asshole has apparently transferred to a different school, and another pain in the ass (the one who got switched from Class A to Class B [not to be confused with the one who got switched from Class A to Class C--that one got expelled]) is also in PM school. That means that the biggest problem-makers are GONE! At least for this quarter. Thus, the classes are the mitest bit easier to manage. Because, of course, there are always more troublemakers.

Let's see. So in Class B, we finished up our rubric for literature circles. They were well-behaved. In fact, Ms J and Ms CT stopped in to check out my library (to supplement stockpiles for other grade literature circles) during that, and later Ms J told me that she was really, really (etc times 8) impressed with how I was doing. Yay! I was so happy to hear that and grateful that she told me.

For writing workshop, I read a short picture book called The Paper Crane, by Molly Bang. While I read, they were to listen for and identify the elements of fiction that I had very briefly defined on a chart. They listened very nicely and identified the elements, EVEN the theme! Fantastic!

I told them that I rated them 'excellent' for both periods on the class sheet that all the teachers are supposed to sign every day. (Those sheets rarely see the eighth period teacher, because all of us forget about them.)

Right after they left, Class A came in for one period. Also, two of the janitors brought in the bookshelf. Hurrah! They had to do that during the class, which meant that the kids wanted to watch and listen to that instead of me.

Now, at some point earlier in the year, Little K and Little C decided that I liked the janitor on my floor. I don't. He's friendly and we chat most days when he comes in after school to clean up. But, eleven-year-olds being what they are, they keep on bugging and teasing.

So, those two were all murmuring about me liking the janitor as the janitors were coming in and out of the room. Then the rest of the class joined in and were all trying to tease me. I was all, "hey, that is NOT true, do not start silly rumors!" and they were all, "Ms C, you're blushing! Your face is all red! It's true, it's true!" Of course it's not true, but they would not believe me. Now, I might not believe beet-red-faced me, either, but I promise you, it's true. I tried to tell them that I am pale-faced and blush easily when confronted, but they didn't care. If anyone puts me on the spot like that, about the Pope or whoever, I'd blush. But the whole class was giggling and I couldn't keep a straight face either. Oh lord. I just hope that they were pleased with seeing me laugh. More likely, they were pleased that the teasing was 'effective' and I won't ever see the end of it.

At lunch, students helped bring the books over from the stupid milk crates and put them in the real bookcase. Hurrah! I am so excited.

Fifth period, which is the one period all week that the room is ALL MINE! BWAH HA HA!, I moved the writing notebooks and reading bags into the six milkcrates. One crate for each table, so that the books for all three classes are in there. This way one student can fetch the crate at the beginning of the period and the transition should be a little easier.

I can't tell you what a difference all this makes in the room! I meant to take pictures today but I forgot, so I will tomorrow. The space is used more efficiently and it's so much tidy in appearance.

Class C was okay. I read The Paper Crane and then we practiced having a literature circle discussion. It was okay, but I really had to push things along. Then for writing, I read it again and they identified the elements. It's funny, they were totally cool with hearing it a second time. One kid wanted to hear it a third time, with the participation questions and everything. Goof.

Last night I went back to school. Boooo. However, there were several people from my class last semester and FA group, including one of the cute and nice boys. That was a relief, to have a friendly face around.
First we have a class on reading. The professor wants to "babysit" and "hold our hand" through the class. Um, yeah, WE'RE not the elementary children, we are their TEACHERS, who are ADULTS. I don't need my hand held. She's all matronly and soft-spoken, and it's kind of annoying. Does that make me a bad person?
The other class is social studies. I think I will like the content, but the teacher might get to be a little much. She talks a lot, about things that aren't really on topic but are about her own books.

The boy gave me a ride home and we talked for a bit, and then I went to bed just before 11.

I was so tired while sleeping. My legs hurt while I was asleep. I was so exhausted when the alarm went off. Waah.

Tomorrow is Friday! I am excited! Not only because it will be the weekend, but because with assistance from Ms J, I put together some fun tasks for test prep tomorrow, about words. I hope to instill in at least some students the excitement of language.

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