Tuesday, October 27, 2009

And We Proceeded On

We finished Rikki Tikki Tavi last Thursday, and then the next day came the horrible realization that there was NO MORE STORY. Hey. Wait a minute Miss Victoria. We were being ENTERTAINED by that. We're not going back to dumb picture books.

Yeah, little munchkins, your brains are MINE now.

So, naturally, one bright young man raises his hand and says suspiciously, "Hey. That book is really big."

Miss Victoria nods cheerfully, "Yep, it is."

Another bright young thing raises HER hand, "And hey. Rikki Tikki Tavi wasn't THAT long."

Miss Victoria shrugs nonchalantly, taking up slack in the line, reeling in, "No, well I told you guys there were other stories in The Jungle Book. The Mowgli stories, remember?"

Comments bubble from my wolf pack, "Well...aren't we going to READ those?"

Miss Victoria looks doubtful, "Weeeelllll I dunno you guys....those stories are kind of hard...are you SURE?"

Class: Uh, YES?!

So I told them I'd read the first few pages of the first story, Mowgli and his Brothers and they could decide if they wanted to keep going. Eight pages later, "Do you think you want to hear the rest?"

Class: Uh, YES?!

Yeah. Thought so, wolf cubs.

The strength of the pack is the wolf
And the strength of the wolf is the pack.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Help Help, It's a Horrible Heffalump!

Not so horrible, but yes, it was actually an elephant. Pardon the cellphone photo. And the desk mess.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Today one of my students said, "Miss Victoria, do you like elephants? I got you a present."

I'm a little worried. My apartment is definitely not big enough. 

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Twas the Night Before...

Tomorrow we begin one of the favorites of my year, Rikki Tikki Tavi. I seriously am sitting up in bed having a hard time going to sleep...because I'm so freaking excited to read this story to the Criminals.

Big Golden L for LOSER flashing on my forehead.

The Marvels of Mapquest

On Friday I introduced our mapping unit by reading As the Crow Flies aloud and then modelling how each member of the class could create his own map of the route to school from his house.

I demonstrated how to draw a street and showed several buildings one might pass on the way, including a church. Since half of my class is Muslim, I also included a mosque. Someone called out, "What's a mosque?" I turned to my class and gestured to them, "Someone tell us, what's a mosque?"

Blank stares.

I quirked my brow...turned and drew a crescent on the round dome of the "mosque." Turned back and asked again, "What's a mosque?"

One of my girls (Muslim) snapped her fingers in recognition. "Oh! It's a banana store!"

Class, including teacher, dissolved into hysterical laughter.

So much for my artistic abilities.

Thursday, October 8, 2009


Overheard in the cafeteria at first grade lunch:

Six year old checking out her taco and singing to herself under her breath: "There was something in the aiiiir that niiiight the staaaars were briiiight FerNANDOOOOOO."

In answer to your question, yes, I died from this.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

You Can Call Me Call Me Anytime

Here's the thing, when one is teaching addition facts to the second grade, one really doesn't expect to hear the jingling of a cellphone. One would be foolish to not expect the unexpected.

Yes, last week during my math lesson, I was rather startled to hear a cellphone going off...from Shanique's pocket. She's pretty small for the second grade. This made it seem even more ludicrous that she was carrying around a cellphone. My raised eyebrow look made her start to talk..."That's probably my auntie."

"Your auntie doesn't need to talk to you in the middle of math, may I have that please?"

She handed it over, I turned the volume to vibrate and left it on my desk. It vibrated a bit later in the day, and I ignored it. At the end of the day we proceeded to the auditorium and met up with my AP, who naturally asked Shanique why she had a cellphone. Things became clearer when her brother, who's in the fourth grade, strode across the lobby...talking on his cellphone. Same question posed to him. "My Mom needs to know we got back to the shelter safe."


AP and I looked at each other and shared a mental "goddammit we can't do anything to help here," sigh. AP said, "Okay, you can keep them, but Shanique, you need to give yours to Miss V. at the beginning of every day and get it back at the end, and Darnell, YOU need to let Mrs S. know you have it, and if it rings in class, it belongs to her." And we watched the nine year old take his seven year old sister out the door to walk her "home."

Some days it doesn't seem to matter that I can teach people to read.