Monday, October 29, 2012

Excuse Me, Your Age is Showing

Today I had the chance to observe a perspective teacher do a counting lesson with a kindergarten class. I remember being a young college fresh, so inexperienced.

So not digital.

She was using the smart board, which, if you've never seen one, is like a giant, wall-sized iPad. In the course of teaching this lesson, she marked and moved things around on the smart board. When she swiped to the next screen, it inadvertently skipped a couple of pages.

"Oops," she said, "J.K."



What the? I wondered if the students wondered why she was reciting the alphabet when they were supposed to be counting. In reality, I think it went right over their heads.

But really, has life become so fast-paced, so instantaneous, so digital, that we are now speaking in initials? That we speak the way we text? By the way, does anyone else think it's funny that text is now a verb?

Just to be sure, I asked my 9-year-old if he knew what "J.K." meant. It went right over his head.

"So what does it mean?" He asked.

"Just kidding," I replied.

"No, really, what does it mean?"

"It means just kidding," I said again.

"Oh. Well that's dumb. Why don't you just say just kidding instead?"


Saturday, October 27, 2012

I WAS a Size 6

I've picked up a long-term sub assignment this month. It's back at my former school, which has been a lot of fun. It's been nice to talk to former co-workers and it's always a treat to get bombarded with hallway hugs from past students.

So I've been there for a few weeks and I have a couple left to go. In this time, I have learned something new about myself: I'm a stress eater and I have a drinking problem.

Lest you show up on my doorstep to haul me off to Jenny Craig or AA, allow me to explain.

I have this thing about paying with exact change whenever I can. I like the neatness of it. Also, it keeps my wallet from feeling heavy. Yesterday, when picking up pizza for my daughter and her friends, the total was $23.86; I did not have the exact change, nor any change, for that matter. And I realized -- I'd spent all of my spare coinage on multiple trips to the vending machine in the teacher's lounge. Doritos, Cheetos, fruit snacks... Snickers, Reese's peanut butter cups, trail mix... I know. I have a problem. But seriously, who calls the school, asks for the sub by name, and then complains about how they don't care for the quality of instruction their child is receiving?!? I would have told her to come on down and teach it herself, but my mouth was full of potato chips at the time. In her defense (as well as mine) she didn't understand that Title 1 help means remediation, not acceleration. But still. Complaining to the substitute?!?

On another occasion, the principal, a good and decent man, found out that I had a headache. After an hour of doing kindergarten assessments, I returned to my room to find a bottle of coke on my desk and a text on my phone saying I would need to get some ice. Does that make him an enabler? I don't know. I was too busy guzzling my room temperature soda to analyze his role in this situation.

This brings me to my drinking problem. Yesterday, as I cleared my desk for the weekend, I had a drinking glass, a travel mug, a water bottle, and yet another bottle of Coke to take home.

The goal pants are getting tight.