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Showing posts with label teaching. Show all posts
Showing posts with label teaching. Show all posts

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

#WW Late Again

I've been putting in too many hours at work recently, and I'm tired! It was almost eight by the time I walked in the door, so here's something a few teachers could use but wouldn't dare. Thanks, Lisa!


Saturday, March 3, 2012

Writer's Post: Did You Know?

This week, Writer's Post has asked us to write a page from our brag book or something we'd like to share. My share session reminds me of the senior citizens who love to boast and brag over whose back aches the most or who has more problems. My post is something like that.


I've been a lousy blog hopper, I know, but life is hard with the day job. Did you know I leave for work every morning around 7:00 and don't get home until after 6:00? Plus, I take the work home with me so that if home commitments don't get in the way, I'll spend another hour doing more just to keep afloat. If I don't fall into bed by ten, I can barely function the next day, which isn't fair to kids who need a smiling face at school. Thank G-d for the week-ends where I can finally drop on a blog or two and maybe leave a post... but, not this one. "Silly Sunday" Erica is home from college, and I'd rather visit with her than you. No offense, but blog hopping takes time that I don't have. I'm doing well to post on mine.

Why is teaching so time consuming? To start, not only do I plan lessons, but I'm also a special education teacher who must write IEPs and conduct meetings with everyone on my case load. At 91, my student population is small compared to other years. During my planning time, often occupied with parent meetings, I'm trying to find the time to give achievement tests to two little guys. However, I can't slack off because I'm due for a "pop in" evaluation any day now. I've been keeping on my toes for the pop in since January, and the stress is killing me.

I'm thoroughly sick of the public criticizing us for not doing miracles with the young generation. These kids are working harder than I ever did at their age, and the curriculum is tough. Did you solve algebraic equations in third grade? Did you diagram complex sentences in fifth? In all fairness, my students are intellectually gifted, but still! I'm expected to show growth on their achievement tests even though most of them are starting out in the nineties. I pray no one sneezes during the test!

November 1, 2016. That's the day I'm eligible to retire, if we can afford it after paying college tuition for three kids. I think I'll take my slim retirement pay and supplement it by greeting Walmart shoppers. At least that way, I could leave the job at home and go back to having a life.


Meanwhile, I've eaten some of the stress and tacked on a few pounds and am fighting hot flashes, waking at night, and all the other messes associated with my awful age. See. Ha! I'm more miserable than you!

Thanks to all who visit my blog regularly, and I'm sorry I don't always return the favor. I wanted you to know why. I promise to post something lighter for Silly Sunday.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

#GBE2: Curiosity/Wonder and After Life

As a little girl, I kept seeing these huge wads of toilet paper in the bathroom trashcan each month and couldn't figure out what they were. So one day, I reached into the garbage and opened one to see for myself. Scared the snot out of me!

Maybe curiosity is not such a good thing, after all it killed the cat. Plus there is the old "ignorance is bliss" phrase too. None the less, I've always been intrigued by death. I wonder what happens when we die? Where do we go? or...Will we come back in a reincarnated form? The only true way to find out is to die, and I'm not that curious. I am, however, sure we're never totally gone because the body is made of energy and energy can never be destroyed. It only changes form; scientifically a part of us will always remain on Earth.

None the less, I believe in reincarnation and karma. For example, as a teacher, I must have done something horrendous in my past life. I have a theory that my current and past students belonged to villages that I sacked and burned, and they continuously get their karmic pay back on me every year. That's the history of everyone in the teaching profession because why else would we suffer such abuse?

But the barbarian's life must have been an old, old existence because back in college, a hypnotist captivated us kids in a journey to our past lives to observe what we had experienced. I was an African American slave and knowing myself, it makes sense. Although I'm white, I've always gotten along well with black people and feel a natural chemistry with African Americans who I've worked with or have had the pleasure of being around. Also, I instinctively have a terrible fear of authority figures and hate wearing turtle necks or anything tight around my neck or wrists. I've even experienced anxiety and had to look away upon seeing someone with something bound tightly around their neck. Yep! I was probably bound, shackled, and eventually hung. In my mind, hanging would be the worst way to die.

What? You don't believe this? Fine. I'll prove it to you in the next life. And by the way, a friend of ours visited a hypnotist who told her she was Queen Isabella in a past life. As a result, she has apologized for the way she had treated Jews.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Best Brand of Fertilizer - #GBE2

What's That?

This week's GBE 2 prompt is a picture. Unfortunately, this plant is something I've never seen thriving in our yard. My husband and I tried to plant one and fertilized it with advanced college degrees. You know how it goes:  BS = bull sh*t; MS = more sh*t; PhD = piled higher and deeper. I guess we didn't add enough manure to the plant because it didn't bear fruit for long.

Maybe my degrees were all wrong. I received a BHS instead of the standard BS. It stands for Bachelor of Health Science which is a joke because I never had the clinical ear to be a speech therapist and listen to kids say, "Ew, ew, er." As for the Audiology part, I dropped it after noticing the people who worked hard for more sh*t degrees only to change jobs before thirty. You can only push buttons for so long.

So with the desire to make loads and loads of money, I pursued a more sh*t degree in Special Education. Our high pay is the reason the economy is so messed up. Just ask any of those politicians who are pushing anti-teacher bills. Since my career wasn't bearing fruit on the money tree, I could only hope the husband bought the right brand of fertilizer.

He holds three degrees. After receiving his BS, he went on to pile it higher and deeper, but lawyers do it wrong. After the doctor of jurisprudence, he added more sh*t. The tree started to bear fruit, but so did we. Three little money suckers swung from the tree's branches and turned it into firewood.

Now the monkeys are trying to add fertilizer to their own trees. Hopefully they're buying the right brand of manure at their institutes of higher education! I know the son did. A degree in Economics landed him an instant job straight out of college.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Organizing Your Writing

I have a friend who has literally walked around for two years with an idea percolating in her head without writing a single word until the entire novel is structured and ready to go. Then there is moi. The ultimate pantser. I've tried some pre-planning for my novels but find it cumbersome, and I rarely stick to my plans anyway.

Currently, I'm enrolled in my second course at the Institute of Children's Literature with an instructor who pressures me to plan. This has been difficult at best. True, I've mapped out my work in progress (WIP), but I find myself veering away from those plans as my fingers tap the keyboard.

It's interesting to have readers sometimes comment on how they love my characters yet wonder if they are ADD. I hadn't planned them that way. :o



Recently I attended Mark Diamond's workshop on teaching writing to kids and found myself walking away with tips that are even helpful to someone like me. http://www.anyonecanwrite.com

I especially found his WOW line useful. Here's what you do:

(1) Draw a horizontal (hamburger) line across a sheet of paper.
(2) Divide said line into three equal parts. These parts represent the beginning, middle, and ending of your story.
(3) Place a star between the middle and ending of the story. This is your WOW moment. That's right! The one place where the most exciting thing happens.
(4) After jotting down your idea for the WOW moment, return to the beginning. What happened a little before the WOW moment?
(5) Next write an ending that sums up the WOW moment. You could even work out some sort of connection between the beginning and the ending because you now know what you are going to do.
(6) Finally, fill in the missing pieces of your story.

Voila!

Mr. Diamond has several books available on his site, and I was pleased to have had my school purchase all four of them for me. I especially like the one about Narrative Writing.

Being a certified pantser, I had to try this technique on a recent Monster Challenge. The competition called for a five-hundred word story about a human slaying a monster. I don't know if I'll win, but I've gotten a lot of positive reviews on my piece.