Monday, November 19, 2012

What a Rainy Day

For those of us who are "lucky" enough to live in Western Washington (specifically the Seattle area), we know that today was HORRIFYING in terms of rain. I think it let up twice that I saw, and the rest of the day was dreary, dark, and deep! I'm referring to the puddles with that last one. And the flooding.

When we closed the blinds for naptime, the room got DARK! I mean, normally it gets darkER, but it isn't too dark to see. Today, it was. We couldn't work during naptime because of the lack of light. That's how horrible the weather was. That, and we didn't have recess AT ALL today because trees were falling down and the wind was too strong, power was going out in other schools and stores, and there was lightning.

If you've ever worked with kids, you know what that means. No run-around time!!! What a frightening thought. By the afternoon, the kids were going crazy, so I had to do some fast-thinking and find an activity that kept them busy and also constructive.

For a bit, I worked on paper snowflakes--yep, it's that time of year already, and I sort of go snowflake-crazy every year--but that didn't interest everyone. Plus, the boys were a bit rowdy. So instead, we had a...DANCE PARTY!

It was brilliant. I taught the kids the Macarena--I need to find a slower version of it--and we played Call Me Maybe, a few Kidz Bop songs, and we danced around the room. It wound up being pretty fun, the kids loved it, and it kept them running around the way I wanted--not into each other. And not literally waving their hands above their heads while making obnoxious noises (it actually happens in real life, as I've discovered). Tomorrow, if it happens again (even if it doesn't since it's relaxed curriculum), I'll probably introduce FREEZEDANCE. You play a song, they dance, and when the music stops...everybody freeze! Then it starts again and you dance again. Sounds fun to me and I'm 22.

No Such Thing as Thanksgiving

I have a couple things to write about today. I'll start with Thanksgiving. Because, of course, I'm still bitter about this.

Friday was not a good day for me. I woke up in a bad mood and drove home in tears after a flat tire (it was the final straw, really). I won't go into why it was bad, but part of it was the stress of having to take down my (beautiful) turkey and find something else for the dramatic play to last three days. My turkey was cute, by the way, and very colorful (hello! Color month!).
Isn't he adorable?!?!?

Anyway, AFTER I put him up I found out that I can't have turkeys up during the week of Thanksgiving, because apparently the holiday doesn't exist. Not in our school, anyway. The reasoning is that we have too many different cultures and we might offend one of them by celebrating our holidays.

Okay, here is where liberal BS gets to me. Honestly, I'm a pretty open-minded person, and I appreciate a lot of different opinions that are liberal. This is not one of them. The way I see it, I don't travel to other countries and expect them to change their culture to avoid offending mine, and other shouldn't come into this country and expect us to change our culture. I see it as basic human courtesy.

Anyway, I don't want to go into a massive rant, I just thought I'd make this bit of my opinion known, since it is my blog. Besides, Thanksgiving is a holiday where we celebrate others coming into this country and having peaceful relations with the locals!

See? Still bitter.

One bright spot in my day on Friday was something that a lot of people I think wouldn't even notice. It was one of those small acts of kindness that you don't necessarily notice every day, but I think I did that day because I was in such a horrible mood. On my way to work, I was driving through Issaquah and I was of course stopped in the traffic light traffic. Who doesn't get stopped there? I was kind of glaring out the window, listening to some song rather than singing it, and reading shop signs. A woman was walking on the sidewalk in the same direction as I was going, and she passed this shop whose door was one direction and a pillar another. Behind the pillar (out of sight of the door) was their newspaper. She walked by it, then paused, turning back. She walked back to move the newspaper where the shopowners could see it.

I'm not saying that what this woman did was an amazing feat of kindness or anything, but I think that most people wouldn't have stopped. How often have you considered doing something simple and decided not to because it seemed like too much effort at the time? I can't even count that (mostly it's picking up my room or putting dishes in the dishwasher when the sink is so much closer). I also think most people wouldn't have even thought of moving the newspaper. I probably wouldn't have.

It's these small acts of kindness that make the world a better place. The woman didn't do it for thanks (since how would they even know someone was kind to them?). I found it inspiring, and I want to be more like that woman. I'm trying to incorporate small kindnesses into every day now.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Daylight Savings Did Not Work

Normally, the closer I get to work, the lighter it gets outside. I feel like this is a fairly regular phenomenon for most people, especially if you have an early shift. However, today was different. Rather than waking up in the dark with the sun rising as I drive, today I woke up while it was still light (I slept in...not enough sleep last night) and drove into the dark.

Such is the joy of living in western Washington. It just so happened that today, it was not raining at home. Seattle area had, in a change from their normal weather, heavy rain. So i got to drive into a big, dark, raincloud. Yay!

The day got worse as it progressed (starting out with me being half an hour late to work due to horrific traffic--an hour's worth!), but I like to think I'm a pretty optimistic and cheerful person. I made light of it, enjoyed watching humorous videos with my coworkers during lunch, and did my best not to lose my patience with some of the kids. That was the hardest part.

I learned today that recently in the Seattle area, a man went into a bank and told them to put all their twenties on the counter, took one and then waited outside for the police to come and arrest him. And that this is happening all over the country. I may complain sometimes, but at least I have a warm house to go home to, a full-time job, a college education, food, and a family. What am I complaining about?

So I've decided to do my best to keep my petty complaints to myself and be grateful for what I do have. After all, it is almost Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012


I feel like this particular quote needs to be predicated with an explanation. One of my students loves to sing and dance--which I encourage, since I do too. I would like to say right now that I only play Kidz Bop versions of certain songs, unless they're clean. On that note, every single day, without fail, this girl asks for me to play the Starships song, the Maybe song, and the Gumastyle song. Translation: Starships by Nicki Minaj, Call Me Maybe by Carly Rae Jepsen, and Gangnam Style by psy.

I've always thought it an interesting playlist for her.

Anyway, every time she sings the Maybe song (which is her favorite), she changes the lyrics. Sometimes, it'll be pretty close to the real ones, but not usually. Yesterday's lyrics were so funny, I had to write them down! Here is her mondegreen (aka misheard lyric):
I've also recorded her singing a few times on my phone. I'm not sure if I'd be breaking privacy laws by posting it, so for now I won't.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

The Best Part of Waking Up...

Shania in the morning is the only thing that motivates me for the day.

I've tried other music. I have about a bazillion CDs in my car from which to choose, and you'd think that with such a selection i'd have no problem finding something suitable; wrong. Even after a full breakfast and two cups of coffee none of it works.

And believe me, I need my energy! Even now I'm still amazed at how some of these kids can run and yell all day long. Did I used to do that?

The answer is yes. Yes I did. My mother insists it's payback.

She's probably right too.