Wednesday, June 3, 2009

One More Day, Young Fredegar!

At first I thought my landlord said 'he got away again' so i armed myself with the necessary tool for aiding his re-capture: a big stick. He wasn't in his cage to be sure, but as I perused the front room looking for the silouette of a small parakeet, my landlord laughed. 'He DIDN'T get away'; he was just sittin at the bottom of the cage shredding paper with his beak and being decievingly quiet. Ha ha, i laughed, and replaced the stick near the front door where it is stored. So as i went to my room to get out of the stuffy, hot, casual dress (80's era) clothes i wore to work, he reminded me with a hint of joy 'One more day, young Fredegar.'
Yes, one day more with children, one day more of final exams and sitting in quiet rows with sharpened pencils, one day more before the long summer break and sun and peace and no kids.
I am usually a bit sentimental at these times. I eagerly enjoy not having to get up and get dressed if I don't want to. But over the course of a year you get to know folks pretty well and you see kids grow and change and some even tell you you're the coolest teacher ever and who on God's good earth in the real world will ever tell you that? (Dog's don't count. They repeat variations of that every day just by their looks and by their tail wagging...still doesn't count.)
I will miss even the handful of kids who never tried a math problem in ten months but tried often to sleep in my class. I'll miss the kids who get done early and come up and ask if there's anything they can do to help, Mr. B? How cool is that?!? (Of course, an organized teacher would say 'Why yes, Gabriella, please take these extra chairs to the custodian; he wants to borrow them for graduation'. My response typically after looking strangely around the room with that "thinking hard" face would be 'yeah, take these empties out to my truck, thanks'.
But you gotta love that go-getter attitude. We used to be able to give high school credit for 'classroom' or 'office' aids. Not no more, because we wouldn't want a child left behind. So I don't really plan to have any help at all; when it's offered, i'm always like duh...think of something quick, don't waste the opportunity...
I'll miss the loud 8th graders I had first hour - one of whom has a propensity to include Lebron James in every sentence he speaks ('Ooh, Lebron didnt do so good on his quiz, did he?', 'Mr. B., that's not how Lebron throws paper at the wastebasket.', ...) Collectively, they're a pretty ...(have to watch it here) ... academically-challenged group. (You come up with adjectives.)
I'll miss my two seniors who made it almost all the way through a huge Pre-Calculus and Discreet Mathematics textbook, one of which has chosen Harvard over Stanford as her universtiy next year.
I'll miss my sophomores (i'm the class advisor you know) and their quick wit, their hard-working attitudes, and the fun we've had building floats or arranging flowers for graduation.
I'll miss the freshmen algebra class (wait...'miss' is a bit strong here); where the sophomores eluded a strong work ethic and needed little prodding, the freshmen boycotted all manner of homework, period. The average grades for those two groups reflected this, but you still gotta love em!
Yeppers, one more day! Life is good.

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