Wednesday, November 28, 2007

do it yesterday

Sometimes I wonder if people ever think about what they ask others to do. Yesterday I got an email telling me I need to take the GRE before Dec. 7, so I have to sign up immediately. But the meeting discussing the grad program isn't until Dec. 6 and they aren't sure I'm eligible. If you look at a calendar the only time to take the test without missing school is this weekend! Even if there were still spots available at a nearby testing site, that is absolutely absurd.

Today, my principal pulled me out of class to tell me that he needed to talk to me during my free period later. He didn't show up and then I ran into him on the way to lunch. One of the math teachers recently left, so he offered me her Calculus class in place of one of my Algebra I classes. It seems like a great offer- really motivated seniors who actually are excited about math! Until I realized that I would be preparing 4 different classes, which breaks contract not to mention being absurdly time consuming. He gave me until tomorrow morning to decide, so I spent the rest of the day asking everyone's opinion and coming up with: I'm interested but figure out how I can do it with only 3 preps. Principal's solution: call my advanced and regular classes 'Algebra', now they are magically the same and only count as 1 prep. Cute. I'm going to look at the schedules tomorrow to see if I can trade classes with other teachers easily or if it will create a scheduling nightmare. I really want the Calc class if I can get it though, because that makes it incredibly more likely I'll teach it next year.

In addition to all the other people wanting me to do stuff yesterday that they tell me about today, there's one thing I wish I had done yesterday- drink apple cider. Its bubbly today, and last I checked apple cider isn't carbonated- that's called sparkling cider. I thought I might have accidentally created hard cider, but a little online research tells me that cider they sell in stores will go bad before it ferments because of the way it is processed. The sell by date is in December, but, something is not quite right. My stomach is gurgling...

Saturday, November 24, 2007


I sent a work email at 10:30 on Saturday night, hope no one notices! I'm exhausted, except really awake. There seem to be different parts of my brain sending out conflicting signals. Part of me is revved up to be productive, and the rest has shut down. Listening to piano music makes me want to run downstairs and play, but the downside to living with people is that they wouldn't appreciate me pounding away, however beautifully, after 11:00 pm. Tomorrow I'll be back to living alone, but without a piano to pound on. When I was in college, Thanksgiving weekend was a big reunion, a time to visit with as many high school friends as possible. I didn't contact anyone to say hi, let alone see when they were around. It helps that I've seen people since the summer, but I still feel old. And I'm rambling. Got new yarn today for blanket #2, its pretty. I forgot to bring in canvas bags though, so I brought home plastic, another detriment of living with people, the bags have been kicked out of their prime position in the front seat so I didn't think of them. And tangent off of the rambling, I shall now sleep and dream of the delicious ziti we baked this afternoon...

Thursday, November 22, 2007

turkey day

Happy Thanksgiving!

Today was a lovely day of eating and family. We ate an enormous turkey (18 pounds, 6 people, tons of leftovers) but it was chemical free and never frozen, so the family is making progress. Personally, I'm making progress in the field of crocheting. I'm nearly finished with a blanket I'm making for me, and found out that a similar item would make a great Christmas present for my mom. That makes for something that will keep me busy and doesn't require shopping anywhere that will be open at 4 am tomorrow trying to entice me to get out of bed at an ungodly hour with an iPod. On that note, I have 20% off at Old Navy starting Monday, and nothing to do with it.

Monday, November 19, 2007


The temperature fluctuations my body has been enduring are absurd. When I arrived in my classroom this morning from the 30 degree outdoors, I found the radiator was blasting cold air. I taught my first class wearing my jacket and with gloves on. By 10:00 the heater began pumping out 'room temperature' air (ideal room temp, not actual). Before the day was over though, it was uncomfortably hot in the room and I was wishing I hadn't worn such a warm sweater. This happened all last week, except it was a little more spread out, and was replicated again this weekend when I spent time outside (feels like temp=28) and returned to a friends apartment with an overactive heater (feels like temp=suffocating aka 80). I no longer know what to wear anywhere and my body cannot adjust to anything because of the constant changes.

In other news, 1.5 days to Thanksgiving break. I'm trying to put together an interesting way to review with my classes the next few days because new material probably won't go over so well.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

2 of 4

Today was the official start of the second quarter.

Last week saw a mad rush from some students to get all the work from the entire year done. Other students were frustratingly indifferent to their impending F. I got to go to Boston and get lots of muchly needed hugs on Thursday. The weekend was spent grading, reading the entire archive of It was a great read, I was both disappointed and proud to find that I'd already made most of the changes she made. Except the big scary ones like selling the car and unplugging the fridge. Sometimes I wish I lived in a city so I wouldn't have to drive anywhere and the store was easier to access. But there are just so many people in those places! Maybe I'll move into one of those 'green' apartments they're building in Lawrence from the mills, I think they're right down the street from the Italian grocery!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007


Everything comes with a story. Usually its impossible to help a student without hearing multiple levels of stories. We met with one student's mother today because he has been consistently absent. On one layer, he stopped coming to school because he thought that he had already failed his classes, he got an inaccurate version of the policy and went with it rather than asking his teachers. On another layer, he was failing his classes anyway because he needs special services due to ADHD and other disabilities that were not being addressed. On a still deeper level, he was having issues with gangs- got in a fight at lunch and couldn't take the bus for fear of getting in the middle of something. A member of the city gang task force came to the meeting to discuss the situation- how he shouldn't be wearing a red t-shirt underneath his uniform, by sitting with certain student at lunch he was associating himself with a gang, even if he wasn't a member of it, that she could kick the threatening individuals off the bus, but since they live near him and school can't protect him in his neighborhood that probably isn't the best solution. High school is complicated enough as is- add more gangs than I can remember (with some absolutely ridiculous names) and it becomes downright overwhelming.

Monday, November 05, 2007


Day light savings has so many pluses and minuses I really can't make up my mind about it. Realizing it was only 10 am when I thought the morning was gone yesterday was great. Trying to stay up until 10 pm last night was challenging, at best. Seeing the sun when I woke up this morning was terrifically motivating. Seeing the light-sensitive street lamps on in the parking lot when I left school this afternoon was depressing. I don't know if I actually believe the energy savings that result. I do know that there is a spike in accidents the days following the change because of our off-kilter circadian rhythms (thats a really strangely spelled word). Result of this all? I'm tired and can't think clearly enough to figure it out.

The first quarter ends this week. I'm pretty sure a lot of my students are failing, they have until Friday to hand in missing assignments. Hopefully the low grades will be motivation to do better work next semester.