I've decided to break this post up into four categories for your reading pleasure. A few highlights of my life since I last posted:
It's November now here and apparently in Kentucky this means it is officially nearing the end of fall. We were on quite the streak for awhile, but I mentioned to Brent the other day that we should turn the heat on. We haven't yet, but I think we will within the next couple of weeks (those of you that already have snow...I'm sorry). We've truly enjoyed the warmer weather and beauty of fall. I've forgotten how long a normal fall lasts...instead of in Iowa where the trees change one day, you rake the leaves the next (in case the snow comes that night!), and then it snows within the next few days! Yikes. Here the colors have been so intense and have lasted so long. There are still so many trees holding onto their leaves in brilliant reds and burnt oranges...it is so peaceful and beautiful.
My students have been working on their poetry unit for the past few weeks. Today officially marked the last day of their writing of poetry, although we'll have a few more reading/elements of poetry to cover. I decided since they have been working their hineys off (or most of them anyway), that it would be fun to wrap up this unit with a "coffee house poetry reading." So today, as they filed in to class with their typed up poems in tow, I turned on the lamps, put on some music, and even pulled up a picture of a coffee house on the projector for a backdrop. It was really great listening to them share their writing, and I hope to post some here in the future. I thought about getting some hot chocolate to share with them for the occassion, but calculated the cost (both in dollars and in time and in spills) and decided against it. I mentioned it to my veteran teacher collegue across the hall who has been teaching for about 30 years now and his response to the hot chocolate idea: Are you crazy!?! Overall the kids seemed to enjoy listening to fellow classmates, and it was nice to sit in the back of the room and just listen for a day. We even snapped for each other when we finished reading, just like the pros!
Last year when I shared an apartment at college with 3 other girls we decided we would be wise and buy the huge bottle of refill soap for our hand dispensers in the kitchen and bathroom. We bought the big refill bottle in September or October of 2007. I was the last to move out at the end of the school year, and found that all three of them had left the refill bottle behind. There was still about a third of the bottle left, so I decided to pack up the little dispensers (which, yes, cost about 90 cents at WalMart) and the big refill bottle. I first hauled all this home, and then I packed up and hauled it to Kentucky. Yesterday the dispenser in the bathroom ran out, and I noticed the one in the kitchen only has a few squirts left in it. That dang refill bottle lasted us this long! Man...my roommates sure missed out! :)
And last but not least...puke
For those of you that don't know...I don't do puke. This was seriously one of the deciding factors for me when I was deciding between secondary and elementary. I figured secondary students know, and can get out of the classroom when they "feel it coming..." Well, sickness is starting to go around and I am clorox wiping and hand sanitizing all around me (thanks a lot Mrs. Sandbulte), and lucky for me, have have not even gotten the hint of a cold yet. However, today I had about 15 students gone over all, and in my first class of the day this scenario played out:
The bell rang, the students were getting situated and student #1 approaches me.
#1: "Umm... Mrs. Irwin, umm...I just threw up."
She continues to look at me. What she was looking for...?? Seriously.
Me: "Okay...go to the nurse."
She proceeds to the back of the classroom where I have a sign out sheet and passes and begins the process when I interupt her efforts...
Me: "Just leave."
about 5 minutes later...the students have begun writing in their Writer's Notebooks and student #2 approaches me.
#2: "Umm...Mrs. Irwin?" (looking very...very ... very pale)
Me: "Yes." (Why they come up to me, say my name, and then wait for a response is still beyond me...)
#2: I feel like I'm going to puke."
Me: (Immediately averting eye contact and distancing my body from student) "Then get out of here" (said in a voice not near as loving as it should have been said in).
#2 proceeds to the back of the classroom where I have a sign out sheet and....
Me. "Just leave."
(IN the meantime, #1 returns, says she is staying...wonderful)
About 5 minutes later #2 comes back.
Approaches me...I back peddle.
#2: "I threw up."
Me: "Go to the nurse." (No, not..'I'm sorry. Are you okay? Can I get you anything...but go to the nurse.)
About 20 minutes later. #2 returns, yet again to the classroom, and says the office told him to just wait in the classroom until his ride comes.
...and my stomach is turning just thinking about it.
Whew...am I cut out for this!?