Monday, September 24, 2007

The Chair Adventure

Apologies to anyone I may have inadvertently freaked out with my last post (cough!Theresa!cough!)...I just didn't have the mental wherewithal to describe the drama in detail.

Things that happened today include (note: include, but are not limited to):

1.  The Superhero, the Bulldozer, M, Boy J, and Girl J all melting down at the same time.  Seriously.

2.  Aide D not showing up.  Which is not a huge loss, considering we were going to tell her "Thanks, but no thanks" today anyway, for exactly that.  Especially since it turns out that she's been going to her afternoon sub position even on the days she flakes with us.

2a.  And, yet, another body for the moment described in #1 would have been...nice.

3.  The Bulldozer tried to lock me into my own computer area with a bookcase.  You have to at least give him props for the audacity.

4.  The Bulldozer decided that I did not actually want a chair and moved it out from under me as I sat down.  Hence the large bruise on my back and -- thanks to Aide J -- the report I had to file with Risk Management.

4a.  I have done worse to myself.  However, there is something about having it done deliberately that smarts.  Not like he hasn't been hitting me or anything, but still.

5.  The Superhero was processing things as slowly as molasses today.  Like, 10 seconds' processing time or better.  Naturally, because I was busy with the Bulldozer (see #4), I missed Aide S. getting on his case and assuming he was being defiant.

5a.  I would have assumed the same except that even when I asked him if he was ready for snack/recess/other thing she likes, it took at least 10 seconds to get a reply.

5b.  He might have been, some of the time...but Aide S is still not-grasping how to redirect him.  Despite my explaining in detail to the Superhero's father what "we" (a.k.a. me, Aide J, and Aide Mrs. B) do to redirect him right in front of her.

5c.  What the frell is going to happen in science tomorrow?  :-(

6.  We made it through News-2-You relatively unscathed.  However, the Bulldozer was at it again...I forget why except that it was Monday.  But, I tied his pen to the table with a long piece of yarn, and it took him about 10 attempts at throwing the pen to realize it wasn't going anywhere.  I have to admit, that was amusing.

6a.  I miss teaching News-2-You.

7.  I miss teaching...all I'm doing these days is putting out fires.

7a.  Or sometimes not.

8.  Nobody noticed until I asked that Princess had taken her BRAND NEW (as in, just brought them to school today) glasses off at recess and left them in the grass.  Thank God we found them.

8a.  I was hoping we'd have a week or two before I flashed back to losing RL's hearing aids....

9.  Aide K had a simple instruction after we did science today:  Finish agenda books and then journals (note the "then").

9a.  Five minutes later, Princess is completing a week-old journal, and Boy J is PLAYING IN OUR BEANBAG AREA!

10.  E had a good day.  Thank goodness.  If she hadn't, Aide J couldn't have helped me when...

11.  ...M lost it.  As in, royally, totally, nearly knocked Boy J over off the bike lost it.  As in, screaming, squealing, swearing, cackly laugh lost it.

11a.  The OTs are going to ask me tomorrow how her sensory diet is working.  Aide D hasn't been at school since the day they brought it -- so I haven't been able to try it.  Hooray.  :-(

12.  It's that time, and my stomach hurt all day, which didn't improve my mood.

13.  I don't know if it's the hormones, but comments like "he's still going?" about the Bulldozer, or just "still?" about M really bothered me today.  You think that I like listening to that?  You think I'm not doing everything in my admittedly-stretched-to-the-breaking-point multitasking ability ('cause, really, who can handle five simultaneous meltdowns with only one reliable adult for backup?) to get everybody under control?

13a.  My bag of tricks work.  You have seen it.  Before making snarky comments, you might consider TRYING SOME OF THEM.  Hmph.

13b.  Seriously.  Try them.  You can't comment 'till you try them.

13c.  TRY THEM.

On the plus side, I've come up with what I feel like is a good way to modify our social studies texts -- I feel like I've got a fairly good balance of functional skills like counting, word/letter/number identifying and vocabulary development versus simplified modified content.

Also, I task analyzed the entire thing and printed it out with each step highlighted so that Aide K will not be totally useless.  I hope.

Seriously, one group's thing leads off with:

1.  Open to Unit 1 (page 1)  -- this is the highlighted part.
a.  Direct the kids to the page numbers.  Every child in this group should be able to find this page.

2.  Show pictures of Native Americans (color page, attached)
a.  Elicit some sort of response from each kid (e.g. which one has feathers, which is a boy, how many, etc.)

3.  Take out "Native American" worksheet from social studies folder
a.  M, Superhero, Princess --> circle all the Native Americans
b.  The Angel (new girl) --> Choose 1 Native American and write a sentence about him/her

And so forth.  Tell me she can't screw that up.  Please?

On the minus side, it's taking longer than I thought it would.

I'm gonna go find myself a Mountain Dew, have a peanut butter sandwich, and go to bed.

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