Thursday started much like Wednesday, only with about six interruptions instead of nine. Gee, mucho improved.
At lunch, with kids supposedly working on library stuff in my room, I went wandering down to the te*cher center to chill out. All the admin were there, about to have a meeting. They do this often, use the room set aside FOR US, for their meetings. When they have a perfectly good conference room behind the office. Grr. Anyway, the principal was near the door and I briefly told him about the multiple interruptions and how frustrating and bothersome they are. He seemed to be thoughtful as he listened, for which I was grateful and a bit surprised (since I'm now used to my AP jumping at anyone who dares question anything). I don't know if it made a difference, or will make a difference, but I hope that I put a bug in his ear about the level of this problem.
Partly because of not being able to sleep all through the night, but also in large part to the communist regime/administration as well as all the stupid interruptions during the day, but I have begun to get that defeated feeling. You know, where you sigh, shoulders slumped, and mutter, "Whatever, ok? I give up. Just leave me alone. You win. Whatever." And not just after PDs or staff "developments," like usual; it now happens during the day, and several days a week.
For pete's sake. Can I just do my job?
For the record, Ms Frizzle, I totally agree with you about taking time away from all the teachers for these stupid tests. It upsets us EL@ teachers, too, not just all the other subjects. We also lose a day, or three days, of instruction and quality teaching. I'm feeling more and more like a robot babysitting test preparer each and every day.
So in an up twist, I found out/was reminded yesterday that I will be at an all-day meeting in the city on Monday. Whoops. So I made sure to tell two of my classes that whoever was with them, to make sure that everything gets done like usual. And I'm going to plaster the lesson and reminders all over the place, even on the outside of the door. Cross your fingers.
In class, nothing exciting happened. We used the book's pr*ctice test to do the six steps, and also did some summarizing of paragraphs. It was kind of dull, but I will continue to remind the students that class will just have to be like that for the next couple months. I told them that all the fun activities we did as motivations are out the window until February. I think they were bummed and bewildered, but I'm not gonna pull any punches with them. They need to know. I'll do my best, but holy cow, there's only so much you can do with test prep, especially now that we will have to follow a day-by-day schedule. That's right, we are now scripted teachers. I get to teach out of a thick spiral-bound teacher's edition. What a rush.
When I got home, I had my near-daily snack of pepper-jack nachos, and then caught the train into the city to act like a person instead of a teacher.
I attended and volunteered for the Trailblazers benefit, at a swanky Midtown bar called Branch. I helped man (I know, I know) the registration table. It was busy and fun for awhile. All the money, both in the aspect of the patrons, and on the donation cards and checks, kind of made me uncomfortable. But hell, it's a truly wonderful cause, and they really deserve lots of money to support the programs they do.
The host was one of my favorite people to watch in the VH-1 "I Love the [Blank]s" and on the daily show, the hilarious Mr Mo Rocca. Karen Duffy was also there as an honoree. Eli Wallach (sp?) was supposed to be there as another, but he was sick. Some of the current and past participants of camp spoke, and the director, and of course the very funny host.
There was an open bar, hors d'oevres, a video slideshow, a silent auction, and a live auction. Oh, and s'mores stations at some of the tables. How freaking cool is that, s'mores at a fancy benefit do? Nancy came to hang out at the benefit, and we found the s'mores and made a few rounds.
The silent auction items varied in coolness, but some stuff was pretty awesome. Larry King autographed suspenders, for one. Duran Duran tour jacket, for another. Fancy salon haircut, expensive dentist stuff, portraits, even some boxing gloves. Another volunteer, a former staff member, got these two guys into a bidding war for a helicopter tour, ending at $500! It was exciting.
Oh, and Nancy won a couple things. One was a bunch of books, and I forget the other one. A membership to somewhere. That was exciting, too.
Nancy had to really persuade me and practically pull me over, but she went over to Mr Rocca to ask if I could take a picture with him. I felt so silly, but he was extremely nice and gracious.
At the end, everyone got gift bags. I figured that the volunteers wouldn't get one, either because we weren't posh enough or there'd be none left. On the cotnrary, there were many left over, and we could take more than one if desired. All the bags had a magazine, t-shirt, glass mug, and a complete season of Curb Your Enthusiasm on DVD. Some of the bags didn't have a mug, and had Sex and the City DVDs. So I got both. Plus some leftover marshmallows and chocolate!
Around 11, I headed out to go home, fully exhausted after a very full day indeed.