Sunday, March 21, 2010

The History of the English Language

By this point, we know that this year there are some seriously bright lights in amongst the Criminals. One of them, Nashat we'll call her, came to me with her new American Girl book on Friday morning. Pointing to the pictures in the non-fictional history section in the back, she demanded, "Miss Victoria, what's this, the Great Depression, what's that mean?"

So, short explanation, knowing it wouldn't end there.

"What's a soup line?"

short explanation

"What's this, why do they call it a Hooverville?"

short explanation

"Well if they knew he would do that, why did they elect him?"

short explanation

"Well who fixed it?"

short explanation.


"Miss Victoria...where do words come from?"

Astounded pause. "You do words get in to the English language?"

"Yes...there are so many of them!"

"Well...Nashat...the story of English is a very long one, I'm not even sure how I would tell it to you."

"Well...could you tell it to us today instead of reading Socks?"

So I sat there for a little bit with my mouth hanging open. I mean really. Second grade. This is a question for a high school sociology or English class. Or history class. Or, well, you know, someone who teaches high school.

And then, my stupid brain started whispering to could get a map of the world before the creation of the English could show them how it happened...just the top reading group...come know they'd be fascinated by this spellbinding story....

Sigh. Yeah. Pleiostocene we come.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Forsooth and Verily

Today I told the Criminals about the Ides of March and read them the Soothsayer's bit from Julius Caesar. They then proceeded to go around all day wiggling their fingers creepily at everyone and moaning "Bewaaaaaaaaaaaare the Iiiiiiiiiiiiiiides of Maaaaaaaaaaaaaarch."

The lunch lady was quite taken aback.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Texas Toast

See what I said down there about Adam and Eve in the science classroom? Take a look, folks. Tenure protects me from having to teach this without a counter-argument. Texas teachers just missed being forced to say that the Civil Rights Movement created "unrealistic expectations of equality." Um. Expecting everyone to be treated equally is unrealistic? Only if you're a really hopeful bigot.