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Showing posts from August, 2006

The First Day of School

Yesterday was the first day of school, which went surprisingly smoothly. 100 kids either forgot to come to school, were sick, or their parents forgot to unenroll them, and many more enrolled who had not enrolled when they were supposed to. But not one kid got sent to the office! And I do not have the emotional problem class this year! I mean, there are emotional problems, but in a proportion closer to what I'm used to. Not EVERYONE has a huge overpowering issue. As usual, I spent hundreds of dollars on necessary school supplies and I'm not done yet. (Someday I'm turning this blog into a book to make millions. Any leads??) I got a class pet (a leopard gecko hatchling as shown in the photos). I am waiting for my class list to be finalized and attempting to teach children in English and Spanish, as there weren't enough spaces in the Spanish bilingual classes. The administration is reasonable this year - it's pretty awesome. Two assistant principals and a principal

Getting Ready

The first day of school is on Monday and I spent all day today setting up. I was fortunate enough to have three friends (and two former students!) help me, and I DO NOT know what I would have done without them. We put paper up on all the many bulletin boards, set up all the desks and chairs that had been moved, moved the rug, bookcases, computers, put up all the posters, put all the supplies in the desks, made name cards, got supplies ready, organized things... Funny, when I list it, it doesn't sound like all that much but it took me all day, three other people each put in two to four hours, and I'll be going back tomorrow. And I don't tend to do things slowly. It's a LOT OF WORK. In fact, one of my friends mentioned that she had no idea what kind of hard work this would be and that she was exhausted! At least this year, with the new contract, we get paid for one day of setup. We used to do it all on our own time. Which I'm used to, but it still infuriates me, bec

The Streets Got Him First

That's the headline on an article about the killings in Oakland this year, many of whom are teenagers. One couple has lost 3 sons to homicides in Oakland. It makes my heart hurt. I just wonder how long it will be until it's a kid I know - and when I think about how devastating that would be - for me as a teacher- I just don't know how the families of these kids deal with it. I also don't know what to do. It's easy to get cynical and hopeless. I've heard teachers talk about second graders, saying that it was too late for these kids. You have to get them earlier to make a difference. Those kids are SEVEN YEARS OLD. But if you were around them, you'd see that it's easy to believe that it's too late. I've heard that several of my former students are in juvenile hall. My oldest former students are only 13 years old. I don't know which ones are incarcerated, but I'm going to work on finding out and writing to. I'm not sure it will make an