Thursday, June 22, 2006


Three and a half days left!! Whee!!
This week at school has been a joke. It's been hot and humid and the kids are being babysat rather than taught.
Monday morning was a 'field day' that once again consisted of five hundred children sitting apathetically in the concrete, fenced-in 'yard', with a handful of bouncy balls or jumpropes to keep them occupied. The teachers just stood around talking to each other. I wasn't so much a fan of that. If I had to be out there, I wanted to do something fun. And I wanted more kids to do something other than just sit and sweat.
So first I joined a game of monkey-in-the-middle started by my AP on the girls' side. Kids drifted away and then I started a game of kickball. Hoo, boy.
I don't know about you, but kickball (along with tetherball and the other kind of four-square) was an integral part of my school recess experience. These kids? Not so much.
They mostly understood about kicking the ball and loosely the running of the (chalk-drawn) bases. I had to stop several times and tell them they had to actually touch the base, not just in the general direction of it. The fielding was a disaster. Every single time it got kicked, I had to yell to "Throw the ball! Get it in! THROW IT!" Argh.
Of course, since I'm cool like this, when I get into things, I start jumping up and down and around, especially when they can make a good play. Usually it never worked because a girl would watch the ball soar over her head, or get it and stand there, or throw it to the wrong base, or throw it at (and miss) the runner. Oh man.
Once again, kids eventually drifted away and we had to stop due to small numbers. But I felt good about getting the girls to do something mildly athletic and more involved than sitting against the fence gossiping.
Tuesday morning, the kids were supposed to stay inside for a movie. But another event was in the auditorium, so back we went outside. Ugh. It was a mere 85 instead of 90. Sheesh. But we got more kickball started almost immediately. The girls were actually coming up to me asking if we could play. Cool! A big crowd started off, and the play definitely got more streamlined, and I did more calling out and reinforcing and jumping around. My voice and throat was starting to feel the strain.
After lunch, our grade did go watch a movie for two periods. Then, last period, what did they do? Yep, they went outside!
Of course, time for more kickball! Most of the same faces, eager to continue their raggedy education of the kicking ball game. I stopped calling fouls; my throat hurt and the girls by then knew when to call on. And the plays started to get good! They didn't get outs necessarily, but they got good at stopping the ball and getting it to a base, usually second, to hold the runner. I highly doubt they understood why it was important, but I was impressed and did lots of praise and encouragement. It was fun. The girls seemed to like it. It's always fun to play with students in a different environment that a classroom.

My throat continued to be a bit scratchy the rest of the day, and then Tuesday evening it blossomed into congestion, a cold given by the otherwise-wonderful special someone.

Wednesday morning, the kids were being babysat by a movie in the auditorium for most of the day. I felt absolutely miserable, and went home after an hour. My throat hurt really badly and my head hurt, and I did not want to waste time sitting at school and trying not to talk to the kids.

I took naps and read at home. Later I had to run an errand, which I wasn't happy about, but it will save me money for my online course and education award.

Today is Thursday, I think. I was feeling marginally better this morning, though still hoarse and weak. I spoke quietly and evenly, as little as possible. I sat on the big stool or at my desk, rather than stand or walk, because my equilibrium is off and several times I've stumbled, trying not to fall over. Nice. I made the kids laugh by blowing my nose and tossing the tissue at the garbage can--and missing by three feet. In the afternoon, my friend Ms B said, "You look..." and covered her face as if blinded. I giggled and said, "What, more white than usual? Yeah..." She laughed and agreed.

I should be at grad school class right now...but I'm not. I still feel weak and I can't stray far from the tissues. Being sick in a stupid class for three stupid hours is not the ticket to feeling better. I've done it several times the last two years, and I am finally allowing myself time for recovery. Hurrah for gumption.

Three and a half days!! Eee!!


Schoolgal said...

Many classroom in my school, including mine, are not air conditioned, so many teachers are starting to feel the pain.

I showed 2 movies this week, but I did not show any movies the whole year. One movie was a classic with Jennifer Jones. I asked the children to see if they could figure out the "twist" in the story. Many found it boring and couldn't figure out the "twist" even with all the clues. But when the twist was revealed, they liked it. The second was a Disney film. That one they loved!

I would also like to show them "To Kill a Mockingbird" but unless the bird is animated, I think they won't like it either. Too talky--no action.

I am so glad you tried to organize games with the students during Field Day. I hate it when teachers just stand around and talk. If you are going to have a field day or fun day, it needs to be organized.

Wishing you a speedy recovery!

17 more years said...

Now now now- the key to these last few days of school is to make the kids work so much, they don't want to come to school! Our 8th grade graduates showed up today (after last night's gala festivities), much to our chagrin. We worked those kids so hard, that by lunchtime, half of them had called their parents and BEGGED them to pick them up.

Needless to say, NONE of them are coming in on Monday.

Feel better, and hang in!

Chance said...

sorry you're sick. your kickball experience shows what a crime it is that so many kids aren't being taught how fun it can be to play games.

beacherteacher said...

"a cold given by the otherwise-wonderful special someone"

I must have missed something this spring!

Being sick and still being in front of the classroom is no fun. I always feel bad when a student comes in with a bad cold and usually let him or her just rest all day. Although I always wish that the parent would have let the student stay home instead.