September 8, 2009

For Dog Lovers

My Aunt Sue sent me this video today and I just had to share. It touched me. I think it mostly hit me because Sadie has been on my mind quite a bit the past few day, more so than usual. It's hard to believe but next week marks two years that she will be gone. I still miss my girl more than words will ever be able to describe. I still dream about her often. I still think about her every day.

If you have a moment hug your pup and watch this video. It's sweet.

September 4, 2009

You're SOOOOO Strict...

Today was an especially rough day at school. I am pretty sure it is because it is our first three day weekend. Some of my students don't do very well when the routine is altered. I know that for some of them the teachers in the special education department are the ONLY constant these kids have in their lives. The kids can count on adults to be there every day, where as at home that isn't always the case.

The moods, the extra drama, and bad behavior could also have been a result of the full moon. Put the two together... BAM! It was a really rough day. I was constantly redirecting, correcting, pulling kids back from what I call "LaLa Land" and a couple of times getting down right angry and saying, "I can't take this any more, DO YOUR WORK!"

I had to break up a skirmish before fists started to fly. Kids in the office for 'ball bagging'. (Don't ask, you don't want to know.) Kids in the hall to calm them down because they were disrupting the whole class. Did I mention today was a rough day?

Finally I made it to the last class of the day. The class that just happens to be one of my largest classes and one of my most challenging. Good Golly! Was it ever today. I was already tense, I know that that makes the entire class a bit more tense. While I was explaining the quiz for the day suddenly, one of my precious freshman yells out, "Why the crap do we have to do this?"

Believe it or not, I was much calmer than I could have been while my sweet, princess freshman wanted to continue with a 'discussion'. My darling freshman wanted to have a 'discussion' about the fact the 'crap' is not a cuss word. I simply stated, firmly with my 'teacher' look, "It is not a word that will be used in my class. End of discussion!"

My lovable freshman shouts, "God! You're sooooo strict! I'm glad you're not my mom! I can't believe you're going to adopt a China baby."

On the outside I looked ~I hope~ calm and cool. I again gave her my "teacher look" to try and get the point across that we were finished with this conversation. On the inside I was stinging, and I believe my heart skipped a beat or my stomach did a flip ~ maybe it was both. All I know is I thought this day was NEVER going to end.

This is not the first time a student has shouted at me that I am 'too strict' or that they are 'glad I'm not their mom'. It is usually a freshman who has never had to follow rules like we have in the high school. (The middle school's special ed. program is completely different.) It usually comes when they are frustrated with me or the work that I am trying to get them to do. I understand all of that.

This time when she threw in the line about being able to adopt it made me start to think about how WILL I be as a parent? Will I be too strict? Do I expect too much from my kids?

At school I don't think I expect too much. I expect them to be polite. I expect them to try their best. I expect them to work for their grade. I WILL NOT just give it to them to move them on.

Most of the students in my class are with me for their entire high school career. By the time they are seniors, they 'get me'. They know that I love being with them and I only want them to succeed. Seeing the improvements in their work and the amazing changes that occur in their writing makes me so proud of them and all they've accomplished. Hearing comments from students like: ~ You're the first person to teach me anything. or
~ You and my grandpa were the only two I worried about seeing my piercing.
Those types of comments tell me that I am doing an 'ok' job.

How will it be with polar cub? Will I be too hard? Will I expect too much? Will it be easier because she is mine and she will have more support and structure from home? I don't know the answer to any of these questions. Only time will tell. I do know that I sure don't want to screw this up.