Saturday, September 11, 2010

Too Busy To Read or Dust

Jill Stuart's The Tower, The Zoo, and The Tortoise has been sitting on my nighttable doing what most things in my house do- collect dust. Do you mind dusting? I despise it. I would rather scrub toilets or sort laundry anyday. Back to the book, it is my book club's pick for this month although our meeting has been pushed from September 23 into October because September is so busy for everyone. Thank goodness everyone else is busy too. I am drowning in school forms, fall sports registrations, homework, internet, and behavior "contracts" my kids and I need to sign, as well as grading and lesson plans for my own students. Who has time to read? But the book, albeit a bit dusty, sits by my bed. My children have asked me when I plan to start reading it to them. The cover illustration makes it look like a children's story and they thought I had chosen it for a family read aloud. I am beginning to feel like they will be adults by the time I find time for nightly reading again!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Back to School Traditions- Old and New

Since the school where I teach opened on the same day as the schools in my hometown, I missed putting my children on the school bus for the first day of school. It was my first time ever missing it. That was hard for me. Really hard. I had been a stay-at-home mom for years and when I went back to work as a teacher last fall, I started after my kids. I've always sent them off with notes in their lunches, hugs, and a camera at the bus stop. They still got notes in their lunches, but the babysitter did the send off.

I wanted them to start feeling calm, prepared, and loved. They probably did. But what I fixated on was not getting that photo of them all lined up with their backpacks on. That was killing me. Irrational, I know. Luckily, I arrived home before my youngest got off his bus. So I then lined them all up for our first annual "End of the First Day" photo. Sure, everyone looks a little more wrinkled, but I got it. After the photo, as we walked to our house, I heard lots of details about the joys and frustrations of second, fifth, and sixth grades. How, by the way, did I become the mother of a middle schooler? The walk home was followed by well earned ice cream.

In my own classes, I handed out a survey about likes/dislikes, goals for English class, favorite words, and so on. Even though I am in a different high school this year, there were some similarities to last year's responses. Of course, many, many high school girls cite Twilight saga and A Walk to Remember as their favorite books. I was surprised at how many of the boys said Louis Sachar's Holes was the best book they ever read. I heard that a lot from last year's boys as well.

I hope your school year is off to a smooth start!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Welcome to Back to School Season

September has arrived and the school buses are soon to follow. We happened to drive past my daughter's elementary school yesterday, and she said, "Don't you just love the way your classroom smells on the first day of school? I love that smell!" One of her brothers asked what exactly is wrong with her brain and the other mused what it would be like to have a tail. I hope the latter's new teacher is ready for the onslaught of non sequitirs!