Friday, December 21, 2007

A Quick Meme...my mind is blank

My friend over at Have a Gneiss Day just tagged me for a meme. Ah, I feel the holiday love. The rules are that I have to give seven random facts about myself and then tag seven random blog-friends to share in the love too.

Random tidbit #1:
Apples make me burp. Loudly.

Random tidbit #2:
I heart the Golden Girls and Wheel Of Fortune...I TiVo them everyday. Seriously. EVERY DAY. I'm still waiting for Pat to call me Wheel Watcher ID...

Random tidbit #3:
I know everything there is to know about Lucille Ball.

Random tidbit #4:
One of my dreams is to open an animal refuge for older (or baby) animals that are unwanted, injured and abandoned. Right now, in my mind, it's mostly cats and dogs but I'm open to suggestions...except guinea pigs. They freak me out. Is that a random fact in and of itself?

Random tidbit #5:
I am half freaked out/half can't-wait to turn 30.

Random tidbit #6:
I met my husband while studying abroad ten years ago. We had a "no strings attached" kind of thing (if you know what I mean...wink, wink) that somehow, ended up with some serious strings. And I couldn't be happier.

Random tidbit #7:
I am afraid to wash my face when I am home alone...something about someone sneaking up behind me that I just can't get past...

So there you are. Do you feel closer to me than ever?? I feel closer to myself...and I'm stoked that I don't have to craft a horribly clever post (I have a doozy coming friends) because I am sick as a dog on the first official night of vacation. In my world, kids SUCK right now.

I tag....Ok...I tag no one (sorry!!) because I have to catch a flight to see the in-laws. Have a great holiday everyone!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Not a sub for as far as the eye can see....

Or...Why Don't I Make Up My Damn Mind - Do I Want PD Or Not??

Last alternative title for this post: The Last Minute Adventures of The Weave

Today I had yet another professional development session scheduled for this morning. Again, I would be missing two periods of instruction (which makes a total of 38 missed periods in the month of December alone). I dutifully create sub plans and prep my kids for the impending sub who is due to arrive at 8:45 a.m.

8:40 - I explain to the kids about the bullshit worksheets they will be doing while the sub is there (oh, let's be real about it, while she reads her newspaper and ignores them...)

8:45 - Despite being frustrated about the countless meetings I have been to, my little friends go back to their seats and begin working. I hear a few "I wish she was going to stay" and "aw mans" which, of course, I love.

8:50 - waiting for the sub...

8:55 - still waiting...

9:00- still waiting...

9:05 - yup, still waiting...

9:10 - do I even need to say it???

9:15 - The Weave walks in, looking very haggard. You would to if you had spent the morning sipping coffee and doing absolutely nothing while the professional development schedule goes up in flames around you. She saunters in and sits down next to a kid. (WTF????)

9:20 - "Yea, so there aren't enough subs today. You can't go to the meeting. But you'll work it out."

Of course I can't.

So while I would normally LOVE a nice, long, uninterrupted morning with my friends....I would also LOVE the opportunity to PLAN something worth all of our time rather than continuously pulling ideas out of my you know what.

If you regularly read my blog, you know how tired my behind must be.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Just Say No...

The other day, we were in curriculum planning committee meetings when I learned a new trick to add to my bag. It is serious genius. I think it is the sheer simplicity of it all that really blows my mind...like, how did I not think of this before??

So we're in this meeting working on re-working the ENTIRE social studies curriculum. It's a TON of work, but very exciting work. The classroom teachers dive right in and get to work. Out of the classroom teachers are sitting around and have just about perfected that "we're-definitely-not-busy-but-in-reality-are-completely-useless-so-don't-bother-us" look.

That's not fair. There are a few (the proud, the brave) who actually bust their behinds. So to you, fine friends, I am sorry, but you are lumped in with a bunch of dead weight.

The chair of our committee turns and asks one of the do-nothings to please make a copy of a specific document so we can all look it over and continue. Mind you, we are mandated to be in this meeting until 3:00. It is 1:35 (we had a half day...).

She looks right at the committee chair and says, "no."

Just "no."

That's it, no explanation.

WHY HAVEN'T I THOUGHT OF THAT???

The committee chair was so shocked that she just turned and asked a teacher, who had to leave her work, to go do it while this do-nothing (who frankly doesn't even deserve a nick name... I refuse to waste my mental energy thinking of something quirky and humorous for this dope) sat and continued to stare blankly.

The saddest part is that she has been in the system for so long, that she makes more than all of us combined.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Snooz-a-palooz-a

Have you ever been in the middle of a lesson and thought, "I am so incredibly bored I could cry"?

And no, I'm not bored because of the kids...I'm boring MYSELF by mindlessly plowing through content in an effort to just get it all covered. Bogged down with assessment deadlines, insane amounts of professional development that takes me out of my classroom, and two units that were supposed to be finished yesterday, I have become the world's most boring teacher.

And then I think, "I am so tired, I can't possibly say another word."

Today I was in the middle of a read aloud when I started thinking that I couldn't stand the story, really had no idea what I was saying and was only reading the book because it had been suggested to me and was written in my plan book. God forbid I stray from the PLAN BOOK (ooooo!!)

Then I realized...NO ONE ELSE is sticking to the plan.

Since when was it part of the plan to dump two extra kids in my class because there isn't a sub?

Since when was it part of the plan for an administrator to say, "I can't be bothered with that" when asked for a copy of the absent teacher's emergency work packet?

Since when was it part of the plan for another administrator to troop through my classroom, poking in cabinets and rifling through student work?

Since when was it part of the plan for an administrator to casually read the newspaper and sip coffee while parents drop off their children in the morning?

Since when was it part of the plan for the gym teacher to sit in a shady corner of the play yard listening to her iPod and thumbing through a magazine while forty children roll around unsupervised on scooters?

I'm fairly certain that these actions were never part of the plan. In fact, I'm also fairly certain that they are all in blatant disregard of the plan.

So in a move of sheer rebellion, I said "Screw you, plan!!" (words I don't take lightly because I loves me some organizational tools and a nice, busy looking week filled with post it notes and multiple ink colors) and led my class in the most amazing and exciting round of oral story telling ever!

And guess what?? They loved it and were engaged in a way that reminded me why I got into teaching in the first place. I love making kids laugh and I love making them excited about school.

I feel like I've just burned my bra and rediscovered who I really am.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Do I Have A "Kick Me" Sign On My Back??

Because if I do...please take it off. It's killing me.

As many of you who read regularly know, I have had some issues with The Field Trip this year. There have been some administrative "snafus" to put it mildly. I, personally, do not like to put things mildly and therefore, simply put, have been clusterf*cked by field trip slip ups.

Today we were supposed to go on a trip that was planned by Mr. Big White Guitar. Do I even need to finish the story?? I think you can already tell that we did NOT go to the field trip. Instead, we had a lovely adventure waiting outside in 32 degree weather for busses that were never ordered to show up. Then we sat in the lobby for 30 more minutes waiting for the Fied Trip Coordinator to help us.

What's a Field Trip Coordinator you ask?

Hmmmm, where to start....

Well, friends, a Field Trip Coordinator is someone very "special" who, despite being a "teacher" has endless amounts of free time all masked under the guise of Administrative Assistance periods. You say Administrative Assistance period, I say free time to shop on line with your door locked. Tomatoe, tomato.

Moving right along, as we waited for The Field Trip Coordinator to help us, I was already mentally pulling together a full day of instruction out of my, ahem, behind.

Enter The Field Trip Coordinator and Mr. Big White Guitar.

TFTC: So, there aren't any busses.
Me: No busses? Why not? I thought this was planned months ago??
Mr. BWG: It was.
Me: So where are the busses? Who was supposed to get the?
TFTC: He was (pointing at Mr. BWG).
Mr. BWG: He was (pointing at TFTC).
Me: Are you two serious?
Mr. BWG: It's your fault Field Trip Coordinator.
TFTC: No, it's your fault Mr. Big White Guitar.
Mr. BWG: No, yours.
TFTC: Yours.

As you can read, the situation rapidly deteriorated.

And I just walked away with my class, popped in the emergency movie I keep in my classroom andd then went outside with my class to play in the snow.

All in all, we had a lovely day. I don't think the kids left feeling like they were cheated out of a fun experience. Actually, we had a pretty damn good time.

Thanks to me.

You can remove the sign now.

Who's Peeking?