Damn, I have been a walking zombie all day.
Class C gets to me. This one kid, Eager R, let's call him, is a tall, slender kid with a self-proclaimed "peanut head." He likes to help me by erasing the boards, or cleaning up the classroom, and we banter each morning as the class marches up the stairs, two at a time. He's a giggler, and it's loud and high-pitched. Very hyena-like. He's been freaking out about my hair; he keeps saying, "you don't look like you without your hair!" (It's perhaps three inches shorter!) and giving that giggle when he looks at me. Yesterday as we all walked down the stairs at the end of the day, he was saying to a girl, "We're looking for Ms C's hair! Where do you think it might be? Where would you be if you were Ms C's hair?"
This afternoon, in the hallway as class was starting, he stood next to me, perching his elbow on my shoulder, like an armrest. I actually didn't really notice for a minute or two, then I turned to him and gave him my raised-eyebrow look, and he moved his arm, saying, "Oh come on, Ms C, you know we're buddies." or something like that.
I had my hair up in a ponytail this afternoon, and a strand at the front was too short, so flopped out. I kept trying to flip it up or tuck it behind my ear. As I was at Table Six during independent reading, this girl C, who is a fashion diva, reaches over and plucks down the loose strand so that it hangs next to my face. She goes, "See, there you go. That's the sex." Maybe she actually did say "teh," which would be pretty funny. But regardless, I gave her a shocked teacher face, but then I broke out in a grin. Because I can't keep a straight face in that class to save my life. So then I'm laughing, and she's laughing, and soon the whole room is noisy. Ay.
I circled the room and returned to Table Six a few minutes later. C was like, "Ms C, you should follow my tip. I love fashion, and I love makeovers, and..." I rolled my eyes. Next to C, M piped up, "You're fine how you are." I patted her shoulder and said, "Aw, see? M is my friend; she likes me how I am." Then across the table, J said, "But you could be better." I gaped at him and said, "Are you calling me ugly?" Just to mess with him. The other kids heard and instantly the room filled with "OOH!"s. I giggled as I returned to the front of the room.
It was all pretty funny. I'm sure it doesn't help my professional image of authority when I crack up at almost anything. These days, with that class anyway, it's too hard; I start laughing at nearly any provocation.
The other day we were playing the dictation game with the sentence strips, for commas. I read each one only once, so that they would be forced to listen and pay attention. This time, the sentence I said was, "The movie, to tell the truth, was rather boring." And Table Three holds up their sentence strip: "Bumble bee, to tell the truth, was boring." I bowed my head, covered my eyes, and just laughed for a minute.
I had a seventh-grade coverage on Wednesday, first thing in the morning. You know that I hate seventh graders, and the only thing I hate more is eighth graders. They're all so big and think they're grown and show attitude and take out walkmen and cell phones and cards and all that shit. Anyway, so it's always with trepidation that I walk into any classroom filled with seventh or eighth graders.
But this one went well! My spiel (you can choose between an ELA test or a game) went over well, and though they were a bit chatty, they actually quieted each other each time I was about to read a question. I LOVE that! And when a class is cooperating and being nice, I let myself be more of me--the nice West Coast girl, instead of the stern, mean, NY transplant. And it's a happy cycle of goodness and learning. These kids were sharp with their science, which is cool.
My kids are finally gonna have to 'publish' their stories! Two and a half months, and a few kids have yet to turn in a single draft. Oh well. We started proofreading and editing today, and we will continue/finish tomorrow. They have one more chance to get feedback and make improvements on their stories. Monday, they will have to turn in their final, typed story. Yay!
Speaking of "yay!", next week we will get to start the poetry unit! Ms F and I put together an introductory lesson, so I've already got Monday taken care of! And I have made an outline of the order of types of poems that I want to teach (starting with more structured poems, then moving to magnetic poetry, and then to free verse), so the rest of the planning shouldn't be too tough. Sweet!
Like I said, it's been a very tired week. I shall be THRILLED when school is done tomorrow.
It's 9.30. I hope I can get to sleep, like, right now.