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It’s Good to be Queen August 30, 2008

Posted by alwaysjan in Teaching.
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1 comment so far

As a teacher, I’m not queen just for a day, but for 180 days!  Welcome to my kingdom.  I know you’re dying to know how the royals live, so please come inside.  Oh, you noticed – my castle aka classroom is the only one that has no glass window in the door.  The glass was broken out years ago and replaced with a board.   But I was told that a work order to replace the glass was put in five years ago.  I’m cautiously optimistic.  

Please don’t trip over that neon orange extension cord.  Since there are only two electrical outlets in my classroom, it has to stretch from here to WAY over there (so I can use the overhead projector).  I bought the bright orange cord myself, because I’m so safety minded.  Did you know that technology is the wave of the future?  

Look! I’ve got TWO computers.  Okay, only one works, (and then only part of the time), but don’t they look great?  Last year, when the working one stopped working, I called the district.  After two weeks of phone-tag, I found out some people at the district needed to change the IP addresses of some computers.  But they didn’t know where those computers were.  So here was their best plan.  They went ahead and changed the computer addresses, figuring that when people’s computers stopped working, they’d all call and complain.  That’s how they’d know where the computers were.  I give them a C for being so clever!

What I do love are all the windows that stretch to the top of the 12-foot ceiling.  At my old school, all the windows were painted shut.  I felt like I was teaching inside a shoe box, only with no holes poked in it so we could breathe.  Look! I even have a view of the continuation high school.  (Last stop!)  

I keep the blinds shut most of the day to try and keep the classroom cool. That air-conditioner near the ceiling is just a prop.  I’ve only found one cold spot in the entire room.  If you stand on the Pp Penguin square on my class rug, you can feel a faint breeze.  It’s right next to the Qq Queen square. Coincidence?  I think not.

No, it’s not really 5:21.  That big clock at the front of my classroom doesn’t work. At least not since I was given the keys to the kingdom, two years ago. I put a big yellow frowny face over it the first year, but that slowly peeled off. But the good thing is, one of our vocabulary words in third grade is “malfunction.” That clock is a great visual.  In teacher-talk, we call that “realia!”

At least last year, the PA system finally started working.  My students were getting tired of missing assemblies and I was tired of sending a runner to another classroom to find out what was going on.  I’m thankful for this small kindness.  Isn’t that a symptom of the Stockholm Syndrome?

And, no, my whiteboard is not dirty.  I’m afraid it’s starting to go bad.  When whiteboards go bad, it’s worse than when girls go wild, and a whole lot dirtier.  I’m hoping to get another year out of it, maybe two.  It serves as a daily reminder that you get what you pay for.  Personally, I think it’s important that children learn these lessons – the earlier the better.  Besides, I’m going to start writing the really important stuff on the margins of the whiteboard, where it’s still good as new.  We teachers are a resourceful lot.

I’m glad you like my bulletin boards.  Before I put those up, there was just crumbling lath and plaster.  Dang! It’s hard trying to stick a push pin into plaster.  My husband bolted those babies into the wall for me.  When you’re married to a teacher, it helps if YOU’RE resourceful too.  Power tools are also a plus.

No, please stay, really!  I want to show you the viper’s nest of electrical cords behind my desk. Another time?  Okay, but I hope you’ll be back – with the glass for the door.  I shall remain cautiously optimistic.