Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Of Dances, Broken Chairs, Victory for the Non-Losers, and a Walk In the Sunshine

Daddy is visiting and that means I've been busy helping him with house and garden projects. We've painted the deck, deck swings, the shutters, planted tomatoes and marigolds, washed the house, and stuff I can't even remember. At least we're getting stuff done and I'm not cooking. He loves to eat out!

As you can tell from my ticker, there's not many days left so it's a crazy time at school. However, I'm so tired by the time the day is over, I haven't had much of a chance to blog, so here are some tidbits, here and there...or, as it says in the title, this, that and the other thing.

1. As usual, I chaperoned the 8th grade dance. I never heard of such a thing until I moved down here, but it's like a younger version of the prom. Well, sort of. We try to discourage the big elaborate spending of money for dresses, and all that and basically said, "wear your Sunday go to meeting clothes", and most of them did. I'm not sure if the clothing manufacturers are not pushing the Britney Spears Slutwear or what, but the girls looked a lot less trashy this year than in previous years. They looked, quite honestly, like cute 8th grade girls should look. Then again, the girls who'd be dressing slutty were the ones who couldn't come to the dance anyway because of the number of discipline points they'd earned this year.

2. Stoopid Boy made it to the dance (with a little help from Mrs. Partridge who decided that 35 points was a HUGE improvement and he'd earned the right to go). I'm glad he was there. We had our picture taken together and you can bet that one will be a keeper. I'll miss that kid.

3. Remember how Rude Boy and Cast Boy had a run in earlier in the year? Well, Rude Boy was in ISS most of last week when the kids were doing their Severe Weather PowerPoint Project. He lied to me (what a shock) and said he wasn't allowed to do his work up there, and then when I said that I'd talked with the ISS teachers, and yes he was, he informed me that the computer broke every time he got on it. Amazing. In any case, he turned in a project last week. Turned out it was Cast Boy's project which he copied and did nothing more than change his name. I about died laughing when I saw that because I'd actually helped Cast Boy with some of the graphics so I knew his project pretty well. (This is what happens at the end of the year when the server folders are a mess and the best I could do is have the kids store their projects on the desktop and hope they didn't mess with each other's work and or do something stupid - like copy). I sent Rude Boy's dad an email, along with the assignment attached which specifically spells out that any student who passed off someone's work as his or her own would earn a zero and a behavior note. Which is what he got. So he earned a whopping 48% for the year in my class. His Dad signed the note and was very apologetic in the email. He'd be better off putting his kid in therapy.

4. I mentioned to The Enforcer about Rude Boy's cheating incident in my room. His response? "Whatever you do, don't write a referral. I'm running out of furniture." Apparently the last time Rude Boy was called to the Enforcer's office for his latest incident, he flopped all of his 400 pounds down into one of Mr. Enforcer's chairs and it went crashing to the floor, along with Rude Boy. It's amazing that Rude Boy was actually able to get up off the floor after that one.

5. We cleaned out lockers which, in itself, is a scary thing. I don't ever want to see these kids bedrooms. One kids had eight - yes eight! - jackets in his locker. One wonders if his mother noticed that he was missing that many articles of clothing.

6. Due to the lockers being cleaned out, they've shortened the time between classes from five minutes to three. Hey, the kids don't need to go to the lockers, so why do they need five minuted? It gives them two fewer minutes to cause drama in the hallways and get into fights and trouble. Of course Brick Boy, who's never moved faster than a very slow stroll, is incensed as it is impossible for him to get to the bathroom and to class on time. Considering that he claims he needs to go to the bathroom during every class and between every class (his ploy to get out of the room and wander aimlessly), this was no shock. What will surprise him is that next year the kids will only have four minutes, not five.

7. We raised over $2,000 for the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life. Someone got the brilliant idea that we could charge the kids a dollar for the chance to wear a hat, flip flops, and sunglasses and they could go outside and walk around a makeshift track for a designated hour. I know middle schoolers will pay a dollar to do almost anything, but we were amazed at the turn out for Relay. Of course, they got to walk with their friends, buy snow cones and water, and wear hats and sunglasses - anything beats being in class. The weather was perfect, and Mrs. Math and I walked the route several times and enjoyed the break.

8. Cast Boy is in ISS for the rest of the year - and it was for something he did in another team area that got him written up. Of course, he found a cell phone and called mom/grandmother (Biological mom apparently has a drug problem so Grandma adopted him a birth and is raising him) who came down and pitched a fit because it's obvious that everyone in the whole school is picking on him. She demanded that every piece of paper in his discipline file be copied for her, which the Guidance Goddess did. Of course, considering the amount of paper in that folder, it took some time. Hope she has fun at the school board - she's lucky he didn't earn a ticket to alternative school.

9. The Non-Losers in the Third Period Class From the Very Depths of Hell Itself noticed the other day that all the Losers were - gasp! - pretty much gone from the class. They had managed to earn themselves stints in ISS or were suspended (one moved, we celebrated). I told them that their wish had come true but now they had to prove it was just the Losers causing all the problems in their class. They were a delight. We're making kites and they accomplished more than any other class. I think they've learned a pretty valuable lesson this year.


Karen said...

I chaperoned the 8th grade dance here and we all noticed that our girls looked much less slutty this year, too! : )

Darren said...

I can't believe you only have two days of school left! I have three weeks.

Mrs. Bluebird said...

Yeah, it seems really early, but we start ridiculously early - August 9th this past year. I'd rather get out right before Memorial Day and start after Labor Day.

"Ms. Cornelius" said...

Lucky you. I did prom. Must blog about that.

Isn't it amazing what losing just a few losers can do to a classroom ambience?