Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Nice Surprise

Last year, our district purchased a subscription to News-2-You, which I had been using in the classroom for a few years.  I was a little flattered, I must say, that that happened because one of the middle school teachers was introduced to the program by observing upcoming sixth graders in my classroom.

Anyway, I figured it was a one-year thing, budgets being what they are and all.

Still, for laughs, I tried to login today -- and guess what? They must have renewed it.

Nifty.  :-)

The Painting Adventure

I got to school around 9:00 this morning, got busy working, and around...oh, 10:30 or so, a painter stuck his head in and asked if it was okay that he painted the ramp.  It would take about an hour to dry.  "Yeah, that's fine," I said (though I now realize I should have asked Patrick if he'd need a restroom...oops).  So he painted. 

We got ready to go to lunch around...oh, 12:30ish.  (By the way -- Patrick *likes* to dust and volunteered to come dust everything (and I mean *everything* -- he's even doing the chairs) in exchange for Subway for lunch.  Nifty.) 

Anyway, around 12:30, I poke my head out and the paint still looks wet.  I ask a painter guy if it's okay to walk on.  "Oh, eight, ten minutes it takes to dry," he says in broken English. 

Dubiously, I kinda touched the ramp with a toe and checked my shoe.  No paint.  I have Patrick follow me, and we walk to the office. 

Only to find Sixth Grade Teacher J in the office complaining that she hasn't been able to get into her classroom all day because she got here after they painted once and then they PAINTED ANOTHER COAT.  This is confirmed by Fourth Grade Teacher K.  No more classroom for any of us.

Meanwhile, am getting twin sixth grade girls, and probably Boy B back until his surgery, because PM miscounted children.  So that takes me up to 10, plus an hour of Girl B.

And here I was hoping I was finished with the cutting and laminating for a while.

The room is looking surprisingly not-insane (though half the ceiling tiles aren't quite where they should be and there are wires hanging out of two of the walls).  Of course, half of my stuff is still in the car or piled in the center...but as difficult as it was, the move proved to be a good organization tool.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

What I Learned Today

  1. Someone thought it would be a good idea to start the construction and then move the dusty, grimy furniture and boxes out of our classrooms.  Yippee.
  2. There are absolutely no pictures of Patrick Skene Catling, author of The Chocolate Touch, anywhere that Google can find.  Hence, a generic "man" picture in Writing With Symbols for the kids' "About the Author" section.
  3. Search "King Midas," and read how many different versions of the myth there are.  It's crazy.  In one, he's a nice but rather dim king who just doesn't thing.  In another, he's a selfish dolt who just wants to be rich.  In another, he's kinda halfway in between.
  4. New Boy B may or may not be coming.  If he doesn't, other kids from School GG will.  He's a vote for "the devil you know."
  5. Journals are done through September 11.  No, not cause that's September 11, but because it means I have 3 weeks of journals done.  Bonus:  I figured out a way to keep them arranged so I don't have to print them again next year.
  6. My portable has an actual computer center thing with extra outlets on the walls.  However, it's right next to my only option for a "quiet corner," which invites technological disaster (translation: flying electronics).  So, I have to move a few of the semi-movable but rather heavy bookcases over there in order to block the area off better.  This will entail moving boxes, though.

Meanwhile, I must go buy Clorox wipes.  Like...Costco quantities of them.

Monday, August 18, 2008

The Facts of Life

The song, I would wager, is imprinted somewhere in the backs of the minds of every child of the 80s.

You take the good, you take the bad
You take them both, and there you have
The facts of life, the facts of life

The good:

  • I found laminate at K-Mart for almost half the Walmart price -- $10 for 50, versus $7.77 for 20.  Yay.
  • I have finally finished cutting out all the new things for this coming year -- since we'll be moving partway through the year, the motto is "Portable, Portable, Portable."  Everything from the principal's recess chart to the lunch count is made to be picked up and carried from one room to the other.
  • I finally chose our first book.
  • My new desk has shelves for both printers and all my hard drives.  (Inkjet printer, laser printer, 1 TB network attached storage, 1 TB hard drive, 750 GB hard drive, 300 GB hard drive.)
  • I figured out why my little desk fan wasn't working and fixed it.
  • The desk is on wheels -- which will be useful come number 3 below.
The bad:

  • The shelves on the desk weren't wide enough in the right places to put the printers on the shelves where I wanted them.
  • The desk was about 2 inches too wide for the space it's in, which will necessitate moving of heavy things at some point.
  • Did I mention that I hate scissors?
  • Velcro dots are insanely hard to find unless you didn't have a brain freeze and remembered to order them from here.
  • New Boy B from last year was supposed to go to School GG but they ran out of room, according to Program Specialist PM, so he might be coming to school -- maybe -- for the two weeks of school before he has brain surgery, at which point he'll be on home teaching and may -- at that point -- go to School GG but probably only if they transfer kids from School GG to my school at that point.  Eesh.
  • I hate scissors.
Funny story, though.  I went back to Walmart for the third time in as many days (how is it, even with lists, I forget things?).  I tried to wake up Patrick to ask him if he still needed toilet paper, which I could get for him while I was there.

Half-conscious Patrick says, "I don't remember how to get there."

Me:  Uh.

So I try again.  He says something along the lines of, "I think I want an orange soda."

Me: Uh.

So I try one more time.  "I remember that you want an orange soda.  I'm asking if you want me to get toilet paper or if you want to wait and do your grocery shopping later?"

Patrick:  Incoherent mumbling.