Thursday, September 29, 2005


Yes, serving duties has its positive side. Again today I had discussions that may never have come up for me otherwise. One kid was telling me about his friend that goes to jail on the weekends and is let out during the week to go to school. The kid is apparently 20 and still in high school ... (robbing houses as a sideline, apparently). Hmmmmm, which high school? ... I didn't ask.

Another kid asked me if I was one of those "crunk" teachers. Pleading ignorance, I got the "low down" on this word ..... you know, it could mean a LOT of things, ... crazy and drunk, ... fun, .... OR if someone does you wrong, you've been "crunked".

On an even MORE positive side, I don't have to serve my duty tomorrow. WooHoo.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Duty Reprieve

The same people I was ragging about yesterday for the duty we share .... we talked and decided that 4-5 teachers doing the duty is overkill, so we're going to split it up in the future and do "part" weeks each and have 2 teachers per duty. ... a win-win situation. I still walked around today and talked with the kids. They're mostly all a different type of kid than I see regularly. A large majority of these "late" kids are the ones not interested in school, waiting to drop out (or at least talking it up), maybe doing drugs, bla bla bla. Of course there are the ones that just get caught up and can't quite make it to class on time this ONCE.

I talked to one kid today who was telling me about this fight he was in and was suspended for for 3 days. I talked with another that was talking about his math class and what he likes and doesn't like about it. And then I had the following conversation with the "jolly" math teacher, a litterbug student, and myself (courtesy of something I saw on a talk show once ... Oprah?).

This kid accidently pushes off this paper onto the ground in front of us 2 teachers. I say, "thanks for coming to pick it up and throw it away." and I wait. Then he asks me if I'll pick it up. No. Then he asks jolly man if he'll pick it up. Jolly teachers cups his hand to his ear and says, "what" .... they go through this a couple of times until the student says, "please". Then jolly teacher picks up the paper and hands it to him. I make a face. "Well, he said please." .... So I turn to the kid and say, "I like your necklace. Can I please have it?" ... "I said 'please' ". ... I was polite.

If your request is off the wall, just saying please doesn't make it okay to ask. ...

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Pulling Your Weight

Once a month we have a week long duty supervising kids who were late to class (locked out and forced to sit all period silently in the cafeteria). There are about 4-5 teachers per period. We are supposed to walk around and make sure the kids are not on their cell phones, no heads down, no talking, etc. We're supposed to keep each other on track in case a teacher doesn't show up or doesn't do their work. ... My group makes me cranky. I barely know them, they're all guys, the coaches just sit there and write out their plays or whatever it is they do. The negative science teacher just stands in one place and says, "if the security guy is not going to do anything, I'm not.", the other math teacher just jovially stands by cranky math teacher and chats with him. I'm the only one walking around (or even one of the few showing up). Who ARE these people?

I do NOT feel comfortable saying something to them. What am I to say? ... I tried joking with them about walking around and "working", but to no avail. ... I'm trying to be all yoga about it and make my peace with it. ... Apparently, I'm not THERE yet. Then I feel like, why should I worry about what they're doing or not doing. I'll just do my job to the best of my ability, and it does make the period go faster to walk around instead of just standing there. Deeeeeeep breaths. This is teaching me patience and acceptance and restraint in kicking of shins.

Monday, September 26, 2005

1/6 done ... 5/6 to go

Grades were due today for our 1st 6 weeks. Of course, SOMEONE (no names mentioned), left the grade completion to the last minute (seconds actually), but ... I got them done. Tons of papers to grade and enter and formats to send and export and ...... DONE. Whew.

On a side note. My neck has been aching/sore every morning for a while now, and yesterday I just clued in that MAYBE it's my pillow, so my husband and I went to Bed, Bath, & Beyond and plunked down a pretty penny and bought one of those "curvy" "foam-ish" "heat-sensitive" type of pillows, and wouldn't you know it, my neck feels great this morning. Small treats. AND I got to go out to dinner tonight (a TexMex delicious burrito). AND I got to use my new "frog" and "cat" stamps to mark homeworks "graded". .... A nice way to start the week.

Oh yea, and a student told me he saw the following tee-shirt: "5/4 ('5 out of 4') people don't know how to work with fractions" ... or something like that.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Homecoming Mums

Is it just me? Maybe it's because I didn't grow up in the South ... or is it just Texas? Last week was our homecoming week, and on Friday, the homecoming game. Well, so then all the girls and some of the guys are wearing these humongo "mum" flower dangly jingly streamer-y school-color-y things on their arms and shirts and heads .... ew. What's the attraction?

..... But I guess these are famous last words because in two incidents in the past (new VW bug, and the "interesting" school color for our local university), first I was horrified by the ugliness ..... and then, I don't know, I'm thinking there's something misted into the air, some kind of brainwashing product, where slowly over time I find myself first saying, "it's not SO bad", to then eventually, after enough chemicals have been introduced into my brain via the highly secret mist, "well I guess it looks okay".

Pretty soon in a few years or so, you'll see me at Michael's buying supplies for my own mum atrocity.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Student Interactions...

One of my favorite past students ("miss! I'm going to tell my mom you touched me inappropriately." ... when my arm accidently brushed her chest 2 years ago) had to come up to me at lunch today and tell me that I was in her dream last night. She was trying to get out of another math teacher's class and transfered to mine and then the other math teacher started yelling at her and then Hurricane Rita started affecting our school ....... I'm guessing that she was having a disrupted sleep because her room is by the front door, and she told me that she had to keep getting up to answer it at night because relatives from Houston kept arriving. ... She's so funny. She also sold (her mom told her to) on e-bay some concert tickets she wasn't able to use but got at a cheap price. And in response to my question of how much profit she made and was she going to donate it to charity, she said, "yes, the _(her name)_ fund". Hmmm.

Then there's this kid who I've never had as a student, but I see him daily at lunch on my 15 minute duty. He practically always strikes up a conversation with me in a matter of fact voice .... for example: "I'm DYING for a cigarette" .... which led to a long discussion on health ... or "do you like my pants? I fashioned them myself" (studs and reworked bell bottoms) .... or today's, "the reason I wasn't here yesterday was because I skipped 3 periods." (then goes on to tell me ... again matter-of-factly ... that he was mad at his foster mom who was mad at him because he called his real mom who he's not supposed to have contact with ....... Oh my. Well, at the end of the day, when I was tutoring a bazillion kids, this same kid comes by and is doing a fund raiser for/with his class and wanted to sell me cookie dough. Apparently he's a good salesman, because he had a ton of others listed on there and mentioned that his class sponsor told him he's in the lead for sales. Go him. Hopefully, he won't turn out to be too much of a damaged human when he grows up.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Pesky Little Buggers

Ach! ... On a positive note, I'm learning *a little* not to hold grudges. On another positive note, I'm learning patience. On yet a 3rd positive note, I'm so sleepy, that my reactions are slowed down, so I am not as p.o.ed as I could be.

I have a student in my precal class who I had last year in algebra 2. He can frustrate the bejesus out of me in class .... he'll pout and not do work when certain things aren't going his way. He does things for effect or reaction. He's a wee bit smarmy and "brown nosey". And yet ..... he's interested in getting a good grade. He comes in after school and is intelligent and makes an effort to understand the material. He has a good sense of humor. He is a generally good natured kid (except for when he's a booger).

He comes into class today late with a note. Obviously something had happened. We'd already gotten started graphing and working with the calculators, so I asked him twice to get out his supplies and work. Nothing. I walked over to him and asked if something was wrong (it was). I also stated that he couldn't just sit there, he had to do something or get out. He chose to leave class. Ick. ...... And yet, here he comes after school to get tutoring for a makeup quiz, all polite and hard-working.

Deep breaths. I'm SLOWLY learning not to see people as black and white ..... good or bad ..... I say slowly, because I'm still trying to make peace with the fact that our neighbor friends we've known for 2 years have slowly revealed themselves to be prejudice against various segments of the population, and if there's one thing that does not sit well with me, it's that. ..... And yet they have a lot of good in them ..... but I can't see myself (yet?) sitting down to a meal with them and carrying on a conversation when I know this fact about them. .... Still processing this scenario.

Seating Arrangements

On Tuesday I asked my kids 5 questions on the overhead, and gave them a few minutes to write their responses before I collected them:

1. Do you have any seating preferences (near/away from the air conditioner) , front/back, and why? List 2 people you can WORK with effectively.

2. How is class going for you so far and why and what do I need to know?

3. What could you do to improve your grade?

4. How can I help you?

5. Tell me at least one good thing that's happening in your life right now.

The answers are always illuminating. It's always confirmed that the people I've seen dazing off in the back row or chatting with their neighbors are struggling and they actually say not to put them with so and so and not to put them in the back row. Others admit that they should be studying more. Invariably I get the "less homework" answer .... (I only give about 10 math problems a night or so ..... am I unreasonable? I don't THINK so). ... Then I find out that some poor kiddies answer #5 with NOTHING good is going on right now. I'm having a tough time in my personal life, and that's why I'm failing ...

It always helps to remind me that they're people and not math machines and makes sure I don't make any "seating chart faux pas" like ignoring the hard-working girl's request that "I'd like to be in the back seat of a "4 pod" because I don't like anyone behind me ...

Monday, September 19, 2005

Squeaky Shoe ... Really

I don't know if I mentioned it before, but I get hot easily. It could be perimenopause, it could be just my make up ... who knows. And because such, I wear tank tops (work appropriate ... knits) most every day ... or sleeveless dresses, etc. Well, today was the start of homecoming week, and we have goofy dress up days, and today was one of the days I could actually participate .... it was "Maui Monday", so I wore a white tank top under one of my husband's Hawaiian shirts .... Ach! 2 layers .... imagine the heat eminating off me. .... I also wore birkenstocks .... those and crocs are my shoes of choice.


Here comes the last period of the day, and I'm hot (and not in an egotistical sort of way). I feel the heat and moisture. I'm walking back and forth between the overhead and the screen to make a point, and an air bubble is CAPTURED between my foot and shoe, and IT SQUEAKED. So, not wanting anyone to think I .... you know .... I said, "oh! my shoe squeaked." .... Then I realized that was probably not the optimal thing to say to convey the actual situation because I can just hear the kids' thought bubbles, "riiiiiiiiight. squeaky shoe. good phrase."

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Friday Funny

Okay, so it took me this long to actually LOOK at the stuff surrounding the posting area and realize that some of it could be fun/useful/overused in the near future.

One of the funny things that happened on Friday. I was having my precalculus class explore various angles on their graphing calculators to show that, yes, cosx*cosx + sinx*sinx = 1. We proved it together on paper, and then I had them enter various angles on the calculator. So I would start off saying and entering on the overhead calculator and having them enter on their calculators at the same time, "cosine of ...... what's your favorite angle?" and basically the first person that said something (36, 11, .... the inevitable 69 (ignored)) we'd all put that number in and lo and behold,
cos(13)*cos(13) + sin(13)*sin(13) ... hit enter .... and 1 magically appears. We did it a few times and also graphed and such. Well. One time, I again started off with, "cosine of ...... " and someone pipes up with, "your mama". Totally random and cause for giggles.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Black Humor and Sleep Deprivation

I can now in my infinite wisdom (from repeated experience) recognize symptoms of my own sleep deprivation and bite my tongue before I'm overly snarky to students just being kids. For the last couple of days, I've been subsisting on a lack of sleep (welcome to a teacher's world) because I am blessed with tons of meetings and tons of tutoring and tons of materials to make up for each day.

So. One of the symptoms is going off into that glazed-eye stare and fantasizing about COMPLETELY inappropriate ways to deal with rude teenagers (not in class, but say oh .... lunch line cutters / liars / hall wanderers / litterbugs ...) and all the while in my fantasy having an evil grin on my face. mwa ha ha ha, take that, you inappropriate child!

Someone needs some sleep.

Okay, you also know you've taught in high school for too long, when practically any innocent thing you say has some sexual connotation (sp?). While I'm in class and trying to get kids not to yell out answers .... so everyone has a chance to think and respond, and I can get a better sense of how many and who knows what .... we were doing something with graphs, and they had to name which OTHER quadrant that sine was positive in. So I was having them hold fingers up close to their chests signifying 2, 3, or 4. I said, "okay, put your fingers on your chest" ... pause .... tee hee hee hee "okay, don't finger your chest, but put your fingers NEAR your chest to ...." . Oh my.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005


Once again, I have to say that I love being on the student side of a teacher/student dynamic because it allows me to see things in a different light, and then I can translate that into my teaching and see what's what.

For example, I take tap dancing once a week, and I have since January of this year. From January to about May we had one of the directors of the school teaching our adult class, and from May until just tonight we had a hodge podge of teachers (all good). Well tonight the original teacher came back from her hiatus.

Now I'm sitting in the hallway, and she passes by me several times, and she doesn't acknowledge me like she has some of the other students. Now from a teacher's standpoint I was reflecting on what I do to my students during passing periods and right before class starts. I'll say hello to everyone I can, but I know that if I get caught up in a conversation with one kid, then I basically ignore a large portion of students that come into my class. Also, it's easier to be chatty and friendly to the students that have made an overture to you, so you (I) tend to acknowledge them more.

Then tonight I got to thinking (as a tap student .... in my heart even though I know it's not so in my brain), "hey" she doesn't even know I exist ... I'm not as "important" to her as the other students ... I don't feel so good. .... Then I flipped back to teacher mode, and I can just pinpoint the students in various classes that I've hardly acknowledged at all (in their minds ... I'm guessing). You know, you have 21,000 things going on at once, and you want to start class and get down to business, and the niceties get pushed by the wayside unless someone else initiates it. ... How many kiddies are sitting in my class and thinking what I thought tonight?

Note to self, have a personal conversation with at least 2 new kids in each class that you hardly ever say boo to.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005


SOMETIMES I feel "sorry" for our little kiddies. Imagine you have to go through an 8 period day, 50 minute classes, 8 times your brain has to shift gears. 8 times you're "shushed" and made to think. 8 times you really, really, REALLY want to just chat or hang out with your friends and can't. 5 days a week, 36 weeks a year. I'm tired just thinking about it. We give them 6 minute passing periods. They have a wee bit of chance to yap in the hallways. ... I just remember for a few of our summer in-services, we were put through a similar day (only I think out periods were a bit shorter). Oh man did I start clock-watching after about the 3rd period.

Sometimes it just helps to refresh my memory that these are little people, and not math machines. Sometimes I let them talk just for 1 extra minute or so in class. Not often, but sometimes.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Education Hierarchies

I went to a meeting after school today for all AP teachers. We met with 2 uppy-ups in our district. Oh my. The whole meeting they're all, "tell us what you need. tell us what you need." you know, to raise AP exam scores and make the program more successful. Well, the funny thing is that to every suggestion we had, the answer was either, "oh, we can't get that", or "it's coming" (and that has apparently been the answer for 2 - 3 years. Then one of the people had run some statistical analysis on questions they had asked AP students RIGHT after they had taken the exam. On some of the low scores that reflected on our school, I wondered out loud if we could further probe the students why they answered that way, to get a better feel on how to rectify the situation. The statistics man just would not get it. He kept thinking that I was dismissing the questions and trying to justify why the score shouldn't have been low. All I wanted was to further clarify what the problem was. So .... I guess I don't know the upshot of the meeting, and I don't know how helpful the "central office" people were. Hmmmm.

In other funny news. I'm trying to get my precalculus students to memorize (relearn) the special right triangle ratios, so I'm holding a contest and they have to come up to the front of the room and on 2 projected triangles, they are timed on how long it takes them to put down the correct numbers. .... They were a bit "heckle-crazy" the other day, so we talked about manners, and practiced, and then I said, "okay, who wants to come up here and test their mettle?". They thought I was making up words and wouldn't believe me that "mettle" was a word because I'm a math teacher. Google to the rescue. Hmph. Mettle, mettle, mettle. Goofy little kiddies.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Strizzie .... Strusy .... Strizzy

Way back when we were living in New Jersey (go underdog state!), we happened upon some local dialect where people would use "yous" to talk to more than one person. Like, "how're yous doing?", etc. Okay, first it grates on the ears, but then you kind of get into the groove of "yous". Well, also NJ had a big high tech component to it with lots of companies hiring such people, NEC, Bell Labs, ... , so I thought, wouldn't it be great to create a new slogan, toss it around a LOT, and then pretty soon I'd be hearing it right back and thinking, "yup, I made that up". So my saying was, "New Jersey. Yous're Friendly." ... to combine the two ... now people might not think of NJ/east coast people as friendly, but we loved our neighbors and basically the first week we had moved there, we were invited to parties by people who barely knew us, but knew we were new to town, etc. .... Well, I never got the phrase tossed back at me, and I never saw it on a t-shirt ... so I'm throwing it out once again, and crossing my fingers.

I bring this up because I thought I'd make up a new word and one day (cough cough) we'll see it in the dictionary. You know how nowadays people are all about, "hi. how are you?", "oh, busy", or "oh, stressed out". .... Well, the word is "Strizzie" (spelling still up for grabs) to combine the two concepts: stressed and busy. So the dictionary would look like:

Strizzie: adj. stressed and busy. usage: "how are you?", "oh, you know, strizzie".

Now I'll just sit back and wait. mwah ha ha ha. .... I've used it in one class for one day so far, ... I think I need to up the usage. ... an aside: I'm actually not that strizzie today even though I still have to make up some practice worksheets (ala pizzazz sheets) for my calculus class, and some fraction practice (oh my) for my regular precal class (okay, if pi radians are over here, where is pi/4 radians? 3 pi/4 radians? .... um student fingers wildly roving around the circle and playing "pin the radian on the circle", here? NO)


Oh my. My dad's visiting. My dad that is a really good cook and worked many years in a restaurant in varying capacities and even owned a small restaurant at one time. My dad is Persian. We went to a Persian restaurant that he requested from remembering it from the last time he visited. Oh. My. ... On the plus side, I'm not as mortified as I used to be. Why is that? Am I older and wiser? Or older and more tired? Or do I just know that it's no reflection on me ... his bad behavior. Or that he's just visiting for a while and will be gone soon.

So he plops all his silverware into the water glass and leaves them there until his food arrives. To clean them. Obviously in a subtle fashion, clinking them loudly and ceremoniously. He orders food and when the Persian owner comes by, .... right after my dad says in an aside to my husband that the meat was tough ... and asks how the food is, my dad says in a smarmy fake laughy way, "oh, I'm not one to complain". When the belly dancer comes by and then leaves to dance for other patrons, my dad is mentioning that she's not a REAL belly dancer. Besides the fact that she's dancing. In a belly dancing sort of way with her belly dancing get up and belly dancing music. When the Persian ice cream comes for dessert, he grills the American waiter about the contents, and then proceeds to say, oh, then it's not "REAL" persian ice cream. Oh. My. ... Is it just me? Or is that just all too embarrassing for him. Or just plain sad.

Saturday, September 10, 2005


I've learned through trial and error never to assume a kid is putting his head down in class for no good reason. So now I either just quickly interrupt my flow of math discussion with a general call out of "heads up please" or a joking "hey, if I can't sleep, then you can't" or "you're making me jealous". The other day, I walked over to a kid who had his head down and gently asked him if he got enough sleep last night. He said no, he had to "close" at work and didn't get to bed until 3am! I asked if they knew he was in high school and isn't there a law against that. He said that he's 18 and he doesn't live with his parents and basically he needs to close or they wouldn't hire him. Blach. Go figure the poor child is sleepy during the day. What's wrong in the general scheme of things where poor high school kiddies have to go through this (and it's not an isolated case in my school). Today I chatted with the kid and wondered why he didn't live with his parents. He mentioned something about his mom not being interested in him and she had him when she was young and he hasn't talked to her in years. Oh. My. Goodness. ....

Thursday, September 08, 2005

New Days

That's one great thing about teaching. Even the kids that get on your LAST nerve the day before basically get a do over the next day. Every day is a chance to start again. Now I'm not saying that I forget the crappy behavior (not doing work, chatting too much, being a nudge), but I guess for the sake of everyone's sanity, we put it aside and try again today. For the most part I have great kids that will work in class and are generally respectful.

Now that I'm typing this, I just remembered that as I was checking my attendance taking program today, I see that I'll have a new student entering one of my upper level math classes soon. The same girl from last year that was one of my biggest sleep deprivers. Ms. CellPhone. Argh. Now I have seen her in the hallways, and she is in my advisory, and she was in the SAT prep class I taught this summer, and ALL those times, outside of my class, she was pleasant. Oops, her real name is Ms. CellPhoneCatPee (due to what happened during finals last year, tee hee). Okay, now here is a girl that is just not that into math, and I'm wondering why she's putting herself through the pain of taking precalculus preAP if she doesn't have to. ... The plot thickens, and I guess I'll find out soon enough.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

My Wednesday


Get up at 5:30 and do cardio on the treadmill. Shower & get ready for school. Take care of the morning duties for the dog we're sitting. Eat breakfast. Plan in my head what's going on in classes today. Get on the road by 6:45am - ish. Drive to school and map out the day and listen to NPR and Old Rock and the Spanish station in a ping-pong fashion to: get news, relax, learn my 2nd language.

Get to school by 7:30 ish. Quickly make the copies I need to make. Brush my teeth and hair. Work through 1/10th of the pile of shtuff that's accumulating like nobody's business on my desk. Promise to get to the rest soon. Regard the funky smell in my classroom & make plan #103 of how to stave it off. Baking Soda? Plants? Open door? Fumigation?

Help students that come at 8:00am for tutoring and multitask putting up the homework on the board for 1st period and setting up and thinking about how to teach sine and cosine to my regular precalculus class.

First period at 9:00am. Teach sine and cosine on the unit circle. Wonder why I'm insulted that they comment that "this is EASY." Second period off. Rush to get ready for 3rd period by making copies and entering grades and grabbing some caffeine and handing back hwk on their desks and putting up the homework on the hwk board.

Oh yea. 3rd period assembly. Herd the kiddies into the gym. Stand duty in the rafters. Ineffectually try to shush the rude kids that continually talk while the poor presenter is talking away. Get embarrassed for our school and the kids' behavior. Pick up trash in the rafters while waiting for the kiddies to herd out the door.

4th period 15 minute lunch duty. Shake my head at the rush of kiddies that actually get out of the long line to rush outside to watch a fight (same kids that would probably go to a hanging in the old days to watch). Wolf down my lunch. Curse myself for eating something with garlic and onions and quickly pop some gum so I don't make any kids pass out. Enter some grades.

5th period. Low key day because I don't want to get too far ahead of my 3rd period class that missed today for assembly. Realize that some students still don't know how to find the slope of a line given the line on a graph. Reteach politely.

6th period. Help a student and rush to get ready and figure out how I'll present stuff for 7th and 8th periods. 7th and 8th, pat myself on the back because I think I found an effective way of having them memorize the ratios (rememorize) of the 30-60-90 and the 45-45-90 triangles.

After school, bounce between 10 students that have stayed after either to retest or do test corrections or get help. Shoo them off and rush out the door to tap dancing.

Rush to the store after tap to pick up supplies for my dad's visit tomorrow, and to get a perscription refilled. Curse the insurance company because what cost $15 last month now costs $40/month. Wonder how much vasectomies cost.

Eat dinner at 8:45. Walk the dog that we're sitting, clean the toilets and pick up around the house. Look at the clock, and it's 10:10, 10 minutes past my bed time and I still have about 20 minutes of things to do.

Think about a majorly caffeinated day tomorrow.

Deeeeeeeeep Breath.

Yet Another One

This is my 3rd year teaching at this school, and it's the 3rd year I have *at least* one pregnant person or a person with a baby in one of my classes. Crap. And she's one of my favorite students (not that I have favorites, of course :)). Her mom wanted her to have an abortion, she didn't want to, so she's moved out. Oh my. What hardships are going to lie ahead for this child. ... It's going to be pretty soon, that NOT being pregnant is going to be the odd thing to behold here.

In other news, my dad is coming to visit for the weekend. Hopefully, I'll find time to clean the "ring around the toilets" and vacuum and dust and such. Food for the fridge? ... I think he has a new girlfriend, since he doesn't seem to be so depressed when I call him on the phone. It's always, "M. this", and "M. that", and "I'm over at M.'s place". ..... Hopefully, this will last and make him happy.

Friday, September 02, 2005

After the First Time Around

Sheesh. I'm teaching precalculus for the 2nd year at my current school, and it just never ceases to amaze me the difference between how I deliver the material the 1st time and subsequent times. For example, last year after teaching the trigonometry topics, I could see that I wasn't as successful as I wanted to be. I (people?) don't know the types of issues the kids will get hung up on or what they'll find more confusing than you think it should be. Then time rushes on and you have to move on to a new topic, and there it is. ... Then the next time around when you teach it and you look at your notes from last year and you read, "they DID NOT get this" , or "they had troubles with this aspect", or "make sure you try that idea you read about on ...", and then you try it out, and wham! they get it! they really get it! ... I love when that happens.

So .... in a sense, I'm a wee bit sorry for my calculus students this year, because I'm sure I'll have a much better grasp of how much to stress certain things and how to approach other things, and how much time to spend on yet other things NEXT YEAR. Ce la vie (sp?).

On a yoga note: I used to teach aerobics, and sometimes you'd get subs and sometimes you'd be a sub, and I really disliked when people were all set in their ways and crabby because they had a sub, and I'd think, "get over it and try something new for one week". Well. We had a sub last week for "Hatha Flow". Now the flow classes I've been to have been more physically challenging than the regular hatha classes, and yes the sweat was flowing and yes after a while you're all whiny and thinking it's hard and it's hard to do the tree pose when your sweaty self is all slippery, BUT. Then you're all pleased with yourself because you've persevered (sp?) through something challenging. So. Our sub was more of the "hatha" variety last week during the "flow" class, and look at me getting all "ew. sub" on her. Blach on me.

On a yoga/teaching note: so then I think that as much as the students at school may whine about something being hard, I think that we have to stand our ground and say to them, "yes it's hard, but that doesn't mean you can't do it" because if they step up to the plate and push through and do it, they'll be proud of themselves. So. Note to self. Don't make things too easy because where's the fun in that?

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Early Morning Wake Up Calls

Blach. My husband came home from a business trip sick, and guess what he brought me as a present? Yes, scratchy throat, stuffed nose... Oh well, it's been worse, and hopefully this one is on its way out. ... I've also been getting up at 3:30am for the last few days after going to sleep at 10pm. Who's sleepy and stuffed up during the day? Me! Me!

On a positive note, I didn't get cussed out once on Wednesday. By anyone. In fact, no surly looks even. High school kiddies are great. Who knew?

During my TMC duty (all during one of my prep periods for 1 week a month. this week.) I've been meeting the most interesting characters that I'd otherwise not have interaction with. Big thuggy looking guys and little thuggy looking guys, late to class, so that's why they're in there all period. Apparently, the shirt of choice these days, other than the red tee-shirts, is any black tee-shirt with some picture of Al Pacino as "Scarface". I can't tell you how many I've seen. Shockingly, all on thuggy looking boys. Hmmmm. Well anyway. One little guy on Tuesday nicely recapped the whole movie for me because I haven't seen it. Then on Wednesday I had a long, pleasant conversation with two larger guys. Just chatting. They were very polite and goofy. Who knew?

Okay, it's 4:40am, and I don't have to exercise and shower and get ready for school until 5:30, so I'd better do some work to alleviate later scurry-ing as today BOTH my prep periods are gone due to duty and a faculty meeting. ... But, yay, Bunco tonight.