Although that sounds dangerous, I'm only referring to those moments that make me laugh; moments that make me keep coming back for more of this job I adore. Here are a few examples from recent days:
-- I was reviewing with one of my Junior classes about the events at the end of the chapter we had just read in "The Great Gatsby." Here is what unfolded [my comments in bold]:
"Okay so George finds the dog leash and figures out what?"
"His wife is having an affair."
"Right. So he freaks out."
"And what is the deal with the billboard?"
"Ohhh…good question…what is the deal with the billboard? Who can answer that…"
and so our conversation continues until…
"And then he snaps and….???"
"Really? No one? Here's a hint: pow, pow…"
laughter…."He shoots Gatsby!" … laughter
"It's a good thing I'm having a girl because I can't do sound effects at all."
"Try doing a car noise"
[insert my pathetic attempt here]
and so they continue to shout out "noises" that I should try to make just so they can laugh at me. And of course I humor them, because they are awesome.
-- We were playing a review game today in which the students have to pass back a challenge full of questions. Each student can only answer the one question that lands on them. When it gets to the back of the row the student has to run the paper forward for me to check before they can move on to the next challenge and the team that finishes all the challenges correctly first wins. Well, they always like this game but today…holy smokes… I thought I was going to have to strap them down they were so amped up/competitive while playing it. At one point I literally almost got tackled when the two guys in the back RAN their papers up to me to check and it was neck and neck. Of course I make lame comments the whole time just to make them laugh like, "Alright folks, we're getting down to the brass tacks now…stay focused." Things that don't even make sense really. I just love these times, although they are exhausting and take a lot from me, when I get to see my students laugh while still being engaged in what we're doing. We all have fun.
-- I got a new student in one of my classes recently. He came in on a day that the other students were finishing a test, so I had him reading a book. Once everyone was settled in and working I went over to his desk to talk to him a bit and introduce myself. At the end of our conversation I said, "Oh, and I'm not just fat, I'm pregnant." Of course the other 20 students heard this because they were quietly working and they all let out a laugh and rolled their eyes at me.
-- By the way, I'm typing this while Brent is watching the Heat vs Lakers game. There was just a little interview with Kobe Bryant and he said "af-leticism". Really? Why is that okay?
-- Last week during one of my junior classes I had finished up the lesson, and my students were in groups working on some questions about the theme of the book. It was a fairly difficult assignment but they were all diligently working and so I returned to my desk and was able to begin grading a few other assignments. This rarely happens as I'm usually very busy while I have a class…and all of a sudden I got really sentimental. I looked up and said, "Okay you guys, I'm sorry to interrupt because you are all working so well, but I was just sitting here thinking about how awesome you guys are so I thought I should tell you. I mean really…I'm so lucky to have gotten to spend two years in a row with you all…I'm going to miss this class when you leave next year… thanks for being awesome…for real…" and I proceeded to just kind of ramble these things at them. The guys were just staring at me like, "What the heck is wrong with this crazy woman?!" But some of the girls said, "Aww, we're gonna miss you too." And the rest of them just laughed because, since they've been in my class two years, they have come to expect this random-ness from me.
-- Last story for now: I was going over the Writers Notebook Invitation with one of my classes and giving them suggestions for some things they could write about and apparently, [they claimed this pretty adamantly], I said "have roden" [combining 'have ridden' and 'rode']. I was like, "What? You're all hearing things." They assured me I had, so of course then I had to respond with, "Whatever, I'm pregnant."
We do get a lot done in my class, but we sure have fun doing it. I love my job.