Wondering

Do you ever wish you knew whether or not you were doing something the right way? I wish I could take all English teachers that are my age and in a similar setting, teaching the same classes. How different would we be? Do I focus too much on reading and not enough on writing? Am I too sarcastic around the kids? Do I work too much? Do I not work enough?

I guess it’s that human desire to want to compare yourself to others. And, really, what’s the point in that? You are where you are, doing what you can do, as well as you can do it. That should be enough. Yet, I don’t think that is enough for me. I’m constantly wanting to know whether or not I’m meeting the standard. (I guess I’ll find out if the Juniors met the standard in writing next week.)   :)

And now for something completely different:

I’m up at 12:02 a.m. waiting for an audiobook to download (check it out KS residents! http://kansas.lib.overdrive.com will allow you to download audiobooks and listen to them! You have to have a KS Library Card and then download the media player, but it’s beyond easy!!). I’m downloading “The Odyssey” so that I can listen to it on my way to Hays tomorrow. I’m trying to get started on reading for this summer’s courses even though I’m not finished with last summer’s papers. :)  Maybe tomorrow will find me productive in both of those categories!!

I’m happy to be taking a small break from high school, and I refuse to take any work with me! I’m only focusing on my MA classes. High School can wait…though I’m super glad the sophomores are just watching To Kill a Mockingbird. That made it easy to leave them in the afternoon three times this week. Forensics, this trip to Hays, and the dentist on Friday. I hate being gone from school, though. It’s hard to get the kids to accomplish anything, and it takes forever to plan for!

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25 Random Things About Me

1. I am a master at Microsoft Word.
2. I do not have a business mind at all (WHY did I run the concession stand for two years?)
3. I’m becoming more of a techie every day. (My principal told me I was in charge of the laptop carts…YIKES!)
4. I LOVE traveling.
5. If I could go back to college, I would major in communications.
6. The best thing about teaching English is teaching kids to write.
7. I wish I had dear friends within closer distances.
8. I MISS MY FAMILY!
9. I love dress socks, and I love showing them off (it helps when your pants aren’t long enough in the first place.)
10. I enjoy typing in proper MLA Format.
11. I wish I could make a career out of writing.
12. I’ve thought about being a reader for audiobooks.
13. I want to chop my hair off sometime (think: Sharon Stone)
14. One of my greatest passions is PEOPLE.
15. Students can make me cry…when they think I don’t believe in them.
16. I’ve only owned a cell phone for three years.
17. I do not own a TV.
18. I despise horror flicks.
19. I love discussions about how faith interacts with, clashes with, and complements culture and society.
20. I am addicted to reading blogs of people I’m sort of acquainted with but not really.
21. I cannot play basketball to save my life.
22. I blush easily.
23. I have heard multiple stories about the men who are dating me in this small town. (There have been four different ones so far. I just went walking with one of them this weekend! In the 10 degree weather. WOW. I have a great life!)
24. My older brother and I used to be considered twins….then parents of our younger sister…and now boyfriend and girlfriend.
25. I will go anywhere to live in the future, but my heart will always be in North Central KS, preferably in Northern Ottawa Co., on Windmill Rd.

Forensics and Basketball

Forensics season has officially started. Usher in the earlier-than-the-paper-delivery-guy leave times, add blocks of time every day after school to critique kids, and break out the Forensics shirts. Ours are way cool this year. They say, “We’re who Chuck [Norris] calls when he needs back up.” I love it!

This morning I awoke at 4:15, and left by 5:15, to drive two hours further south and west in KS (KS is big) all for three kids to compete in four events. A waste of my time? No. Two of these kids are sophomores who are actually interested in Forensics (one was merely attending to get my communications class requirements out of the way). I’m building my team, and every new experience helps. I was able to work more with these two kids and help them with their pieces, and I believe they are sold about Forensics.

Being sold on Forensics is a unique thing in these “economic crunch” times. One area coach told me that her school board was going to cut the program because it is “frivolous.” That same school board sent three nearly empty vehicles to the same basketball game the other night. No frivolous spending there!

Forensics is far from frivolous, and I’m sad that it has to conflict with basketball so much (the reason only three students went today: Our League bball tourney is this week, and tonight our boys play for the championship!). I am an athlete. I’ve played competitive volleyball for 12 years. But, I believe that Forensics will help a student with more future life and career skills than any sport ever can. (That is, unless you’re a child of Katelyn’s mom, who can make a sports analogy for any life struggle one is facing.) School boards and many admins are obviously blind to the great benefits of Forensics. I’m happy that the ones I work for are still paying our meet fees and transportation bills. It’s a good deal!

So, I’m off to watch the boys play in the championship tonight. I really hope they win. This is the same team we played last year when we lost at Sub-State. Go T-Wolves! The senior boys are constantly asking me if I’m coming to or did come to their games. I love watching them play. It makes me say to myself, “Those are my kids!” in a sort of motherly way. I don’t mind putting in the extra time to watch them. I just need to decide whether or not to ride the loud and bumpy pep bus….for free….or drive myself. Isn’t four hours of driving enough for one day?

p.s. I found out last night which classes will be offered this summer for my Masters degree in English. I was so excited after reading the syllabi and reading lists that I couldn’t make myself go to sleep at 10:00.