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November 19, 2002
Another Meeting?!?

I am tired today. I was out of the class the last half of the day for a meeting and then after school I had another meeting. I have to be careful with my head, it might pop with all the information that has been shoved in there today.

The first meeting was concerning a method to help those kids who are falling through the cracks becuase they do not qualify for special services but really struggle in school. One of the things we looked at was the socio-economic background of children. This background is something that students cannot control but it so heavily colors their belief and attitude toward school.

Below is a table that compares three socio-economic levels, poverty, middle class, and wealthy and how they veiw different things in our society. This is taken from Framework for Understanding Poverty by Ruby Payne, a book that I would like to read when I find it.


 PovertyMiddle ClassWealthy
POSSESSIONSPeopleThingsOne-of-a-kind objects, legacies, pedigrees
MONEYTo be used, spentTo be managedTo be conserved, invested
PERSONALITYIs for entertainment. Sense of humor is highly valuedIs for acquisition and stability. Achievement is highly valuedIs for connections. Finacial, political, social connections are highly valued
SOCIAL EMPHASIS Social inclusion of people they likeEmphais is on self-governance and self-sufficiencyEmphasis on social exclusion.
FOODKey question: Did you have enough? Quantity importantKey question: Did you like it? Quality importantKey question: Was it presented well? Presentation important
CLOTHINGClothing valued for individual style and expression of personalityClothing valued for its quality and acceptance into norm of middle class. Lable importantClothing is valued for its artistic sense and expression. Designer important
TIMEPresent most important. Decisions made for momment based on feelings or survival Future most important. Decisions made against future ramificationsTraditions and history most important. Decisions made partially on basis of tradition and decorum
EDUCATIONValued and revered as abstract but not realityCrucial for climbing success ladder and making moneyNecessary tradtion for making and maintaining connections
DESTINYBelieves in fate. Cannot do much to mitigate chanceBelieves in choice. Can exchange future with good choices nowNoblesse oblige
LANGUAGECasual register. Language is about survivalFormal register. Language is about negotiationFormal register. Language is about networking
FAMILY STRUCTURETends to be matriarchalTends to be patriarchalDepends on who has the money
WORLD VIEWSees the world in terms of local settingSees the world in terms of national settingSees the world in terms of international view
LOVELove and acceptance conditional, based upon whether individual is likedLove and acceptance conditional and based largely upon achievementLove and acceptance conditional and related to social standing and connections
DRIVING FORCESurvival, relationships, entertainmentWork, achievementFinacial, political, social connections

Another book that sounds interesting concerning this same subject that I would like to read is Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America by Barbara Ehrenreich. Barbara is a journalist that gave up her job to take a poverty wage job to find out what it was like. This book outlines what she learns. I found it very interesting.

Any teachers that might be reading this, I wonder if you could share some web resources that you have used or find useful. Specifically, websites concerning Four Block. I'm interested in upper elementary but I will take anything you got. Thanks. Leave those sites in the comments.

I hope that table works.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 06:27 PM
November 14, 2002
Which Would You Rather and Other Stuff

One of the questions that I am asked is so which do you like better: teaching third or second grade? My answer is a qualified… I don't know. I can say that I am enjoying this year, professionally at least, fifty times better than last year, but I can't really say that I enjoyed teaching one grade over the other because of a few factors:

+The class that I have this year is drastically different from last year. I have commented many times in this blog that I don't like one class over the other, but this year's class is much easier to handle than last. Not really sure if what I am seeing is a little more maturity because they are third graders or it is just my class.

+This is only my second year of teaching. I don't know if the differences that I see between the grades are caused by maturity of the kids of a year's more maturity in me. I did start this year differently, I started out the year mean and I have gradually let up. Last year, kind of by default, I did the opposite and I think that strategy (or rather lack thereof) contributed to some of the problems that I experienced last year.

One thing that I do know: this time last year I was praying for a snow day. I was tired and I kept saying to myself "There is no way I can do this for thirty years." I don't feel that way this year, and I think that the two reasons as well as the slight change in maturity in the kids has made this year not as… oh I can't even think of a word to describe what I felt.

And now for something completely different, well almost:
___

Third graders must think that the water from the water fountain out in the hall is magical. They certainly don't like to get water from the one in the back of the room. The fountain in the hall is right there by my room so it is not like they get to be out of the room for a long time. They could probably waste more time by going to the one in the back of the room, but the water from the fountain in the hall tastes better, or at least that is what they tell me. Actually I think that they like it better because it is colder. That or it really is the fountain of youth. And the Spanish thought that it was in Florida, it was out in the hall all the time!
___

Being the Social Studies Curriculum contact has been quite eye opening. The most valuable information that I have gained has been information on the Missouri Assessment Program (MAP). Last year, because of the financial situation of the state, Missouri decided not to fund the science and social studies portions of the MAP test. Schools were given the option of funding the tests themselves or not giving those sections of the test at all. My district was one of the few districts in the state who decided not to take those tests. However through a rather strange series of events, including an extension of the sign up date to take the test and a statistical anomaly in our scores three years ago, it is a very good chance that we will be giving the tests. That came as a shock to some teachers who were not as diligent in teaching those subjects this year. Shocking, I know, but it happens.
___

Yesterday I received two prank calls. The first was 3:45 in the morning. I got up and stumbled into look at the Caller ID. It said anonymous caller. I didn't answer; I just went back to bed. Then again, this time at 11:05 at night, I was asleep and the phone rang. I ran to look at the Caller ID, anonymous caller. This time I answered, "Hello?"

"Ah, Chris?"

"Yeah."

"[Edited for content, needless to say, it made me angry.]"

I hung up the phone and then couldn't go to sleep for the rest of the night. They were high school or college age. I guess I will have to change my phone number and get it unlisted. Hopefully they have moved on to bother someone else.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 06:45 PM
November 02, 2002
It's Halloween, Everyone's Entitled To One Good Scare

I am glad that this week is over. Halloween is the biggest holiday at Wyman. Parents come out in droves. It is estimated that there were over 300 visitors in our building last Thurday. That is alot of people.

Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. Many people think that it is evil, and I wouldn't argue with the fact that there are evil things that happen on Halloween and that some of its roots are evil, but the same could be said about Christmas.

Some of my favorite things about Halloween are:
-The old black and white horror movies. This year I didn't watch any because I didn't have a functioning TV.
-Fall really starts to show its true colors around this time, I like the cool temperatures too. Though this year has been colder than most, I still like it.
-It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown! I am a huge fan of the Peanuts gang and I enjoy watching this every year. I watched it with my class and it brought back that cozy feeling. I will always remember how they say tricks or treats in the movie rather than trick of treat that I am used to. I also remember the way Linus says pumpkin. Something is just weird about the way he says it. The only drawback to the show is the World War I Flying Ace story line goes on a bit too long, kids get bored during that part.
-The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is one of my favorite spooky stories. The Disney cartoon of it is one of my favorites! It is a wonderful story that has an open ending and doesn't answer all the questions that it asks. We read a watered down version of it in class and we wrote about what we think really happened to ole Ichabod Crane. Then we wrote our own scary stories.
-I like black lights, and so does my class now.
-Last year I made oobleck with the kids, but we didn't have time this year. No real Halloween connection other than it is green and gooey.

By the way, the Secret Service Agent get up was the bomb, it went over even better than the funeral director from last year. Everyone loved it, kids, teachers, parents, and pricipals alike. I didn't put the whole suit, sunglasses, and ear piece on until after lunch. My principal said she freaked out the first time that she saw me. She thought it was for real for a sec. Many people thought that I was one of the Men in Black. I think I have an idea for next year's costume... a FBI agent, like Fox Mulder! What do you think.

So what were you up to this evil Halloween? Did you dress up? Can you figure out what movie the title to this blog entry came from? Let me know when you speak out in class.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 01:12 PM
October 18, 2002
In Case of Rapture, This Blog Will Be Unmanned

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(Copyright Gospel Communications International, Inc - www.reverendfun.com)

The assembly that I was complaining about, was really cool! It was a video presentation with about being street smart and staying away from drugs and the like. The really cool part is that it wasn't just any ole video presentation, it used three projectors, three synchronized DVD players, a nice sound system, and a super huge screen. It was ultra cool! To add to all of that coolity, the video used celebrities to get the message across, including four bands, all of them Christian (DC Talk was one of them). They used some funny clips from movies like Shrek, Cats & Dogs, Spy Kids, just to name a few. The good folks from MADD sponsered the show. I did find one thing interesting, every they told kids not to drink beer they would always tack on "until you are 21." Well they almost got it right!

Oh, and I have another assembly on Monday! Whoo hoo.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 05:39 PM
October 16, 2002
Challenge

"The surest path to high self-esteem is to be successful at something one perceived would be difficult. Each time we steal a student's struggle, we steal the opportunity for them to build self-confidence. They must do hard things to feel good about themselves." -Dr. Sylvia Rimm

I used to think that self-esteem is stressed too much. We have to make everyone feel good about themselves. There are no losers. The danger of these attitudes is overinflated egos. People who think too much of themselves. My question has been why can there be no losers? That is not preparing students for real life, because in real life there are times when we "win" and when we "lose." The quote above got me thinking. The danger is not too much self esteem but the kind of self esteem. We should be encouraging self esteem for overcoming hardships and chanllenges, not for beating the other guy. Looking back over the past months, I can think of several occasions were I have reduced the challenge for some of my kids to the point where an activity is pointless, to easy. Sometimes it is hard to know when something is too difficult and needs to be adjusted to help a child achieve success and when the child just needs a little prodding.

This of course is all in the context of education. I don't find my self esteem in beating the other guy or in overcoming adversity. I find it in Jesus Christ. You see, self esteem can fluxuate wildly when it is tied to things like those listed in the above paragraph. What if you don't overcome the challenge, what if you loose? Self esteem take a nose dive. However, when esteem is found in Truth, there is no need to worry about low self esteem.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 09:56 PM
October 15, 2002
Ignore the Truth

In science we are studing about the different body parts that make us. One topic covered are cells. We drew pictures of cells and labeled them, we have compared and contrasted an animal cell versus a plant cell. So I decided we needed to look at some real cell, not just illustrations. The school has a microscope that can connect to a computer and show what is being veiwed on the microscope on the computer. I was then able to also display it on the TV in my room so this could be a whole group activity. The kids loved it. I had a chance to show the differences in the plant and animal cell. In showing the kids the cells and how all these cells magically fit together to create a living person, I was struck with a truth. How are people able to ignore the power of God, when his very creation has His fingerprints all over it. Biologists work with God's creation yet some deny the creator's existance. How amazing. There is no amount of data that could make me believe that the earth, animals, and people was created randomly, accidently. The microscope allowed us to take pictures of what we were looking at. Take a closer look at God's creation.

Well the new Wyman page went live today, though I don't think that it is completely ready, but I am not the one calling the shots.

Mr. Wright, out!

Website Update: I think I have solved some of the display problems in the blog. I got tired of having blogs set up using CSS being so different in different browsers and OS. So I just plopped it into a table and I am done with it. Next, I will tinker with the colors and get the color scheme a little more consistant. If you are still having display problems, let me know.

Posted by Christopher at 05:22 PM
October 14, 2002
Another Assembly

One more assembly and I think that I am going to start screaming and dancing around in a weird way. Wait! I take that back, we have another one on Friday. Today we had a German folk singer to come and entertain (they didn't seem very entertained) the kids for a hour and fifteen minutes! I was given a set of concert etiquette rules that I was supposed to go over before they went to the assembly. Rules included clapping after songs, sitting on one's tush, realizing that the singer is from Germany and that he might have an accent and that we shouldn't laugh at it, and what Herr means. One of my boys went to get a drink just before I went over some of this information and evidently saw the man practicing on his banjo (yes, banjo) and upon hearing the news that the man was from Germany said, "He's from Germany?!?!? I just saw him and he didn't look Germinian!" Hey, if you don't know the word, just make it up!

I have about finished up a new website for my school. My task was more than I expected becuase there were too many cooks in the kitchen. I wanted the site to look more professional, others wanted "a fun kid font with bright primary colors," others wanted Rolla colors and mascot, and still others wanted Mr. Buzz, our character education mascot. So I created three different versions of the same page, and I think that I have met many of the requests. Hopefully it will be up soon.

On website news: I will soon begin the process of upgrading Movable Type (the program that makes this blog possible) soon, so I don't know how this will effect being able to see the page. I don't think it will, but I might effect people on the Gone Ape Network trying to post on their own blogs, so be forewarned.

One other issue, would any tech wizards out there be able to give me instructions on how to show the latest entry on one page from several different blogs, or even better, a portion of the latest entry. All blogs are Movable Type. Any help would be great!

Mr. Wright, out!

UPDATE: Well the upgrade is done, after a few frightening momments. I changed the template again. I'm still playing around with it. On Internet Explorer, the text flops off the right side of the screen, which I hate. Sakamuyo reports that in the Galeon browser (based on mozilla), the blog body section cuts off most of the masthead. I need to stop for tonight, I have got to get some grading done or parents are going to start calling. This template added the search to the left. It will search Blogging with Mr. Wright, Avoiding Evil (for awhile), Future Hope, Time to Believe, The Screening Room, and Out of My Mind.

Posted by Christopher at 05:43 PM
September 29, 2002
Adventures in Teaching

The co-op schedules various emergency drills throughout the year so we're prepared for any crisis. September's drill was a fire drill, so that involves going outside. The boss sits out in her car and calls the center from her cell phone and tells us to evacuate. I had prepared the kids for the drill earlier in the morning, but then it had started raining, so I assumed that Debbie would postpone the drill until Monday or Tuesday. Nope. She called during Learning Center time. I had the dramatic play center open, which involves dress-up clothes. (I also had the block center, writing center, and puzzle center open, but
that isn't important to the story.)

It is sprinkling and looking rather ominous when Debbie calls at around 10:50. I reluctantly gather up the kids from their centers (they weren't happy with me--Center time is their favorite part of the day). I immediately realize I'm missing someone--quick roster check--it's Tia. I send the line (OK, chaotic huddle--we're working on a line, but haven't mastered it yet) of preschoolers outside with the other adults and race through the house to find the missing child.

Then I discover Tia. She's sitting on the toilet. Tia is very close to being potty-trained, but still not there yet. She's very proud of herself for going on her own initiative...she beams at me as I run in and says, "Wook, Miss Nanna, I'm going poopoo in da potty!" I try to lift her off the toilet (how do you explain a fire drill to a delayed three-year old?) and she lets out a bloodcurdling scream, "I'M NOT DONE YET!!" Well, what am I to do? The boss is outside, watching, waiting, and likely evaluating me as a teacher to decide if I'm trustworthy...

I decide since it's our first drill of the year, Debbie will cut me some slack and won't get too angry. So I let Tia finish (gosh, how long does it take her to go?) and explain that we would come back and wipe in a few seconds (she's still in Pull-Ups, so it wasn't a big deal). We race out into the main room of the house...and I notice that poor Thomas has been left behind, busy playing in the dress-up center. He's oblivious that the class has left him (oblivion is a common state for him). Secretly, I suspect that he was left behind for a reason; I think everyone wanted a good laugh at watching me wrestle with him. Thomas is a little...odd. The co-op has a bet going that he will be gay in 20 years. He's definitely a WLK (early childhood abbreviation for "weird little kid"). He likes to play dress-up and do hair and pretend to put on make-up and all. When he's dressed up, he also walks like a girl, doing the hip walk. Anyway, Thomas is all decked out in a long purple skirt and bright red high heels. He is busy admiring his reflection in the classroom mirror and pretending to put on lipstick and fix his hair. Unfortunately, Thomas also has a temper and a bit of a problem transitioning. Most of my kids have transitioning problems because they're little and are special ed, but Thomas is particularly difficult to transition. So I know he will be traumatized for the rest of the month if I yank him out of his high heels. I try to explain to him that we're going outside and I'm met with a blank stare (by this point, we've been inside for several minutes after the alert and have no doubt perished in the pseudo-fire). No time to transition smoothly--especially since Thomas knows that we normally don't go outside at preschool. So I grab his hand and try to pull him with Tia and I. He keeps stumbling in his high heels. We're not getting anywhere. I tell him to take his shoes off...and he starts yelling that he doesn't want to. I get desperate and pick him up with my remaining arm. (I've got Tia under the other arm because she tends to randomly fall over a lot and I don't want to risk her falling in front of the boss-lady.) Finally, I head outside of the house with two armfuls of children. Debbie was about to come in after me...but then starts laughing hysterically. I guess it did look pretty funny. Here I am, holding a little girl who keeps tugging at her rear end because I yanked her shorts up without ensuring the Pull-Up was in proper position. I suspect her shorts were twisted and her diaper not fully in workable order. Then I have Thomas tucked under the other arm, dressed in a skirt that's pulled up to his armpits and red pumps, still screaming because I didn't give him adequate warning of the scenery change. I put Tia down and instruct her to go down the hill to Ms. Lynn, the speech teacher. She (for once) complies without needing multiple repetitions, leaving me to fanagle with Thomas. She pulled at her shorts the whole way down the hill, but at least she listened. I put Thomas down because he's about to either kick me or bite me; I can't figure out which. Neither one seems inviting, particularly since he's wearing high heels, so I take his hand and firmly order him to walk. He tries--but the ground is so wet from the rain that his heels keep sinking into the ground. So I pick him up again and finally make it down to where the rest of the class is waiting...a whopping 7 minutes after the boss told me to evacuate.

To top off the whole experience, Debbie does remind me that I've not brought the emergency cards, the phone, or the first aid kit with me. I apologized and was forgiven. I suspect that had I not emerged with two preschoolers under my arms, I may have gotten in a bit of trouble. The sight, however, of one little guy in a skirt and heels and a little girl still mumbling "I still have a poopoo in my bottom!" exonerated me from any blame. I guess she realized she'd caught us in a bad time...and that it'd gotten worse because the kids knew there really wasn't an emergency and were none too happy about being taken from their Learning Centers.

I told her next time to give me a time when she's going to call a drill so we can be prepared. I know that that goes against the theory of a fire drill, but it's the only way we can all get out in the time limit. Three year olds rarely move quickly when necessary (though they're speedy when I'm trying to slow them down!), and special ed kids simply can't handle the change without warning. In a real fire, I wouldn't have let Tia finish and my aide would've gotten Thomas out already. I think they left him in for me to see and deal with. At least they all had a good laugh over it...and I did, too, after the incident was over and I realized how idiotic I must have looked with my two little darlings...

Then the afternoon session started with a different, and much quieter, group of kids. One of them, Ozzy, is autistic. I suspect he will eventually be very
high functioning. But for now, he is learning those skills to be able to participate in normal society. Ozzy has lots of sensory issues (I guess I shouldn't be talking considering I'm also tactile defensive, don't have tags in any of my clothing, avoid play-dough, and couldn't eat pudding until college because of the texture). His issues always make for interesting stories. We had jello for snack (another food I used to avoid because of the texture). He actually ate it and enjoyed it--I was surprised. Well, Ozzy can't stand elastic. He was wearing sweatpants--I'm surprised they were still on. Ozzy tends to strip in the car on the way to school and undresses at least 3 times during my session. Anyway, he had one hand continuously stretching out the elastic waistband. While one hand was repeatedly pulling his pants off his waist, the other hand was attempting to steer the spoonful of jello into his mouth. I should also mention that he won't let the spoon touch his palm, so he has poor feeding skills because he can't get leverage from his palm. He was carefully aiming the spoon of jello towards his mouth while stretching out his pants. *bloop* The jello slides off his spoon and *plop* lands the exact moment he has his pants stretched off his body. So the poor kid got jello all over his...well, you know what body part I'm thinking of. He looks shocked and horrified for a few seconds and then starts screaming bloody murder. I've already got my rag (I am prepared when I supervise snacktime!) to wipe it up and I'm making my way over to his chair. Before I can get there, Ozzy starts frantically rubbing the spot through his sweatpants. I assume it was to spread the gooeyness around so it wasn't centered over his..., but I don't know what goes on in his mind. Ozzy has the jello completely mooshed around under his pants. It's starting to ooze out through his pants. Needless to say, I had to clean up the poor little guy after that. He certainly didn't enjoy having me wipe him up (particulary in the crotch area), but I think he was relieved to get the jello out of his...

So I have a crossdresser in the morning class and a kid who got jello down his pants in the afternoon session. Teaching is certainly an adventure!

All names changed.

Posted by Anna at 06:54 AM
September 07, 2002
Nurturing, Not My Bag

I think that it would be interesting to go around to the different classrooms at my school and see the different styles and personalities of each room. One of the things that would be most intriguing to me would be the difference between the female teachers' classrooms and the male teachers' classrooms. If I were honest, there is very little sympathy for certain things in my classroom. Here is an example of a typical medical complaint in my classroom: (Moms everywhere will be horrified):

Child: (In the most pathetic, whiney voice possible) Mr. Wright, (insert dramatic pause, sigh for dramatic effect optional) I have a headache (or other ailment). (Flutter sad puppy eyes.)
Mr. Wright: (Usually in the middle of answering another child's question) I'm sorry.
Child: It's really bad.
Mr. Wright: What do you want me to do about it?
Child: I dunno.
Mr. Wright: Sorry, I left my magic wand at home; otherwise I would use it to get rid of your headache (or other ailment).
Child: Mr. Wright!
Mr. Wright: Well, when you figure out what you want me to do, you come tell me and we'll do it. Okay?
Child: Okay. (Limps back to desk, and adds sad little cough)

Horrible isn't it? I'm just so mean. Actually I have discovered that children who actually have a medical issue will say that they need to go to the nurse, and without question, those students who ask to go to the nurse, go. Conversely, those students who won't suggest going to the nurse are just trying to get out of doing something they don't want to do. I guess they feel that saying that they need to go see the nurse is too obvious, and they would be found out. So they wait for me to suggest that they go to the nurse and that way it will appear that it was my idea. As a matter of fact, whatever they come to me and say they think they need to do, I will allow them to do that within reason of course. Just they other day, I had a student complain that they had a headache and they told me that they thought they just needed to lie down. We have a red wagon with pillows in the back of the room, so the child went to the wagon, laid down for five minutes and got back up and finished the day, and we didn't even have to bother the very busy school nurse. Now there are a few students that I have, who are very shy and who normally will not talk to me unless I talk to them. If they complain about something, then it is straight to the nurse! Now if I can just figure out a bathroom plan that will work.

In other news: my desktop computer is going crazy. It has taken to restarting itself while I am working on it, not while it is just sitting there. So I decided to start from scratch by reinstalling XP. So I start the backup process, burning files to a CD-R, five minutes into the process, it restarts. I have wasted four blank CDs so far. Any tech heads that happen to read this, please advise. UPDATE: In trying to run a ScanDisk from the XP CD I recieved this message: Setup has determined that drive C: is corrupt and cannot be repaired. Folks, this does not sound good. The little Tech Demon has taken up perminate residence in my desktop! Does anyone know how to do an exorcism?

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 12:45 PM
September 04, 2002
100th Episode

Hey everyone. Welcome to my 100th blog entry. Take a momment to sit in awe of this accomplishment. Okay, that's enough. Thanks for stickin' around.

Tip for Teachers:

Preview your movies before you show them. Luckly I did before I showed the Animal Life Cycle video. The video started out good, paralleling our text exactly. Same vocab words and everything. It even had a section on trout hatcheries (we will be visiting one next week!) It was wonderful, but then things turned sour. The video went one step further than our book: fertilization, complete with a nice little animated graphic of a sperm ramming his head into the side of the egg. My initial instincts screamed no!!! I decided to get a second opinion. Off to find my wise mentor. She was also excited about the almost perfect match to our curriculum, however, was unsure about our friends Mr. Sperm and Ms. Egg. Off to the principal. She was in a meeting at the time. So I have decided not to open that can of worms. I'll let the fifth grade health teacher deal with that. I've already had to deal with panties, mounting, and mating penguins, I think I will forgo this discussion. This entry should play havoc with google searches on this site.

In cool new product news: Have you been to a restaraunt that had that awesome foam soap in the bathroom? Well now the good people at SoftSoap have brought this wonderful product home in the form of Foam Works. Whoohoo!

IdeaJoy has found The Screening Room. Now if Pressed and I knew if we are going to keep it or what we are going to do with it. Any suggestions?

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 10:28 PM
September 03, 2002
The Envelope Please...

Well I have made some selections for my theme music for each subject. Thanks for all those who made suggestions. Here is the track list:

  • The Original Batman Theme (AR)

  • Respect (Spelling)

  • Conjunction Junction (English)

  • A Noun is A Person, Place, or Thing (English)

  • One is the Loneliest Number (Math)

  • The Four-Legged Zoo (Math)

  • Back in Time (SS)

  • Don't Know Much About History (SS)

  • I wanted to use Time Warp but considering its source material I didn't

  • New York, NY (SS)

  • Weird Science (Science)

  • The Book Report (Reading)

  • You Can't Judge A Book By Lookin' At the Cover (Reading)

  • Bows from Your're a Goodman Charlie Brown (Getting ready to go home)

  • Na, Na, Hey, Hey, Goodbye (Leaving)

  • The Chicken Dance (For fun)

  • The Funky Chicken Dance (Techno) (For fun)

  • Let's Get Ready to Rumble (For fun/morning)

  • We Will Rock You (For fun)

  • Cotton Eye Joe (Techno Remix) (For fun)

  • Several Schoolhouse Rock Songs
An honorable mention goes to one of Kim's friends who suggested Help! for the kids when they need help. I started this today, as expected it was a little rough. I am going to keep with it for a week. They all could recognize The Batman Theme and associate it with AR, but for the rest of the songs they were asking, what subject is that? I will stick with it for two weeks and if it is not working by then I will get rid of it. At least I tried one of my hairbrained ideas.

Notes on the Day:

-Got a new student today. That brings me up to 25, the other rooms have 23 and 24. Evidently I was requested, not sure how they heard about me. Gee, that puts a little pressure on me. I personally think parents should not be able to request a certain teacher, however, I don't have a problem with parents requesting to not have a certain teacher. Oh well.

-26% of the first quarter complete. Somehow that doesn't seem possible to me.

That's all from this side of the desk.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 08:00 PM
August 30, 2002
E-Mail Forwards

These always make me laugh:

How to Tell if You Are A Real Teacher

  • Real teachers grade papers in the car, during commercials, in faculty meetings, in the bathroom, and (at the end of the quarter) they have been seen grading in church

  • Real teachers cheer when April 1 does not fall on a school day.

  • Real teachers drive older cars owned by credit unions

  • Real teachers clutch a pencil while thinking and make notes in the margins of books.

  • Real teachers can't walk past a crowd of kids without straightening up the line.

  • Real teachers never sit down without first checking the seat of the chair.

  • Real teachers have disjointed necks from writing on boards with turning their backs to the class.

  • Real teachers are written up in medical journals for the size and elasticity of kidneys and bladders.

  • Real teachers have been timed gulping down a full lunch in 2 minutes, 18 seconds. Master teachers can eat faster than that.

  • Real teachers can predict exactly which parents will show up at Open House.

  • Real teachers know the shortest distance and length of travel from their classroom to the office.

  • Real teachers can "sense" gum.

  • Real teachers know the difference among what must be graded, what ought to be graded, and what probably should never see the light of day.

  • Real teachers know that the secretaries and custodians run the school.

Coming soon: You Might be in Education If...

From the classroom (it's my "plan" time),
Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 10:13 AM
August 28, 2002
I Gotta Pee!

Wow the kids were slow moving today! We successfully completed our morning activities and that is it! The morning is the shortest part of the day. So that means that I am two days behind in science. Wanna guess what we will be doing extra of for the rest of the week?

One of the reasons that we are behind is because there were some unforseen medical problems. I have at least three kids with bladder conditions or a weak bladder. I have several kids that must go to the bathroom at least every two hours, I have one that is very embarassed of this condition, so in order to get him to do that, I have to parade my class down to the bathroom every two hours. We spend half our day in transit to and from the bathroom. Last year it was across the hall from my room, this year it is a 2 mile hike to get there. By the time we get back from the potty it is almost time to go again!

Sometimes I wish I had a weak bladder, but of course, at teacher school, I was equipped with the top of the line bladder 'o steel.

Notes on the day:

-I always have music playing in my class, not real loud, those students who are distracted by it are put on the other side of the room. Today I was playing the Robin Hood Prince of Theives soundtrack. At the end of the CD, it has a recording of Bryan Adams singing "Everything I Do" (that brings back fond memories). One student, let's call him Geraldo, said to another student: "Now listen to that! That is what I like to listen to. It's got a beat to it." I guess Mozart doesn't have a beat.

-One of my kids, Belle (name changed of course) told me that she would be visiting New York City tonight so she would be unable to complete her homework. This of course got my interest. I questioned how she would be getting there and if she would be in class tomorrow. She said that she would be in class and that she wasn't sure how she was going to get there. "Not staying long!" I replied. "Long enough," she said. I told her that she should bring the class a postcard from New York, unfortunately she doesn't have any money. I guess that is just my bad luck.

-Percentage of school year complete: 6%

That's all from this side of the desk.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 03:51 PM
August 27, 2002
Under the Microscope

Well I have an observation today by my principal, at my request, today. I wanted her to see how I was using the AverKey (a device that will allow what is on a computer to be displayed on a TV) that she okayed for purchase. (I'm doing lesson plans in PowerPoint now, isn't that crazy?) That went okay and was expected, but what was not expected, was the 15 minute surprise visit from my new superintendent! I was going around checking work when I turn around and there he is talking to some of my kids and he then he left! I didn't get to talk to him because I was too busy. He did come back later though. I was glad that I changed my clothes at the last minute today to put on a tie because he is big on professional dress. I think I scored a few points with the man in charge. I do regret not getting to show him what I was doing with the AverKey because he is also big into technology. Oh well, one can do only so many things in a day. Needless to I was extremely tired after lunch and I still had the longest part of the day to go. We took a little break in the afternoon. I certainly felt like I was under the microscope.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 07:31 PM
August 22, 2002
Turn With Me in Your Bibles to Education 5:1

Whew, this week is going fast! It seems like Wednesday today! I have had little time to stop moving though. I am starting to get back in the swing of things at school. As a class, we are starting to hit our stride. It takes awhile to get used to each other, especially them to me cause I am not like the teachers that they had last year, but we are getting used to each other. I am ready for school to be out.

Now for the notes on the day:

I was standing next to the door that goes out to the playground at the beginning of recess, recieving hugs from students from last year (there was a whole line of them.) Another student who I didn't have last year, got so swept up in the moment that he starting giving me a hug... until half-way through the embrace when, I guess he came out of his lemming trance and realized that he didn't really know me at all and that this situation could be slightly embarrassing for him. So here, we will call him Randy, was in mid-hug with someone who he didn't really know. So what does he do? Well the only logical thing that one can do in that situation: pat my belly. I was dumbfounded.

I now have a high school student in my class the last two hours of the day. I don't really want her because she is more in the way than being helpful. Oh well.

Pressed (by the way, thanks Pressed) read this at last night's Loft, turn with me in your Bibles to Education 5:1:

Then Jesus took his disciples up the mountain and gathering them around him, he taught them saying:

"Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn,
for they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek,
for they will inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
for they will be filled.
Blessed are the merciful,
for they will be shown mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart,
for they will see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they will be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Then Simon Peter said, "Do we have to write this down?"

And Andrew said, "Are we going to have a test on this?"

Philip mumbled, "I don't have any paper."

Bartholomew asked, "Do we have to turn this in?"

John whined, "The other disciples didn't have to learn this!"

Matthew asked, "Can I go to the bathroom?"

Judas complained, "What does this have to do with anything?"

And James said, "I don't get it."

Then one of the Pharisees who was present asked to see Jesus' lesson plan and inquired of him, "Where are your theological imperatives and long-term objectives in the cognitive domain? Be sure to activate prior knowledge and align it to the curriculum."

I changed it a bit.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 06:58 PM
August 20, 2002
The Honeymoon Is Over

Well I am a little upset right now. Disappointed is probably a better word. I collected work today from my students and I found that many did not follow directions. Did this surprise me? No, in fact I expected it. So, tomorrow I get to begin the day with Teacher Speech #48a: Being Responsible and It's Effect on Your Grade, You Silly Kids!!!!!!!!!!! This speech is always delivered in a very stern manner, stern may not be a strong enough adjective, very life and death. I center alot of my class about being responsible and the frightening thing is that to many kids it is a new concept! You don't have to be responsible when Mommy does everything for you and cleans up your little messes. I have one Mom that comes in each day and puts up his backpack, picks up his work folder, and takes down his chair. It is no wonder that he gives me a weird look when I don't come over to him to answer one of his questions. HELLO!!!! MOM YOU ARE NOT DOING ANYONE A FAVOR HERE!!!! (WARNING: The following text is not for the weak of heart, INVISO-TEXT* on:) This section has been edited, if you would like to read the full entry please e-mail me. (End of INVISO-TEXT) Now I know what you all are thinking, that I am being mean and you would be right, I am being mean but I am also being truthful. Too bad I can't be that truthful to mom.

Now I should say that this class is like having a room full of angels, (well, sleepy nice people) from the characters that I had last year but I am frustrated and venting, thank you for your indulgence. It should also be noted that I have some VERY responsible students that will get A's in my class. Well most likely.

NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT... (Hehe, Monty Python is funny!)

There is a new blog in the Gone Ape Blog Community. Check out Future Hope and wish Erin a good school year.

Now I am feeling bad about what I wrote up a few paragraphs. I will probabaly come back and delete that later.

I would ask that you would keep Anna in your prayers as she is getting ready for school, she has what looks like to be a very tough year ahead of her working with some very needy preschoolers. Phil. 4:13.

I was going to write about something else but it is gone.

Mr. Wright, out!

*To veiw INVISO-TEXT simply hilight.

Posted by Christopher at 05:53 PM
August 17, 2002
Picking Your Brains...

I need your help!

I had this idea for this school year but I need some help filling in the blanks. In class, when we transition from one subject to the other, sometimes it can be a bit loud, depending on what activity we were coming out of. So instead of repeatedly telling the kids over and over what we are changing to, I thought that I could come up with a "theme song" for each subject. For example, this year in reading and AR our school theme in rocks (boring I know, I didn't choose it), in our classroom it is caves (caves are made out of rocks, follow me on this one) and the saying as you can see on the class website is Batty for Reading! As a result I thought that the "theme song" for Reading and AR could be the old Batman theme song. Whenever they heard that, the kids would know that it was time for AR. An added benefit would be that the kids would know how long they had before I started, the length of the song. I think that it could work, however, I am having trouble coming up with songs.

That is were I need your help! I need a song for the following subjects:

  • English

  • Science

  • Social Studies

  • Handwriting/cursive

  • Math

  • Another Reading song

  • Spelling

  • And any other subjects that you can think of!!

The rules:

  • All songs must be appropriate for third graders, I don't want any angry parents.

  • Some kind of link to the corresponding subject. (I know that the AR example above is a little conviluted.)

  • Submit your suggestions in the comments.

The Reward: If I choose your suggestion I will list them in a later blog entry with your name! I know, lame reward.

On a totally different topic, I have cleaned up some of the mess on the ole blog. All the calendar numbers are the same size now, among other issues. I also added the number of entries next to each catagory. I think I like this. Tell me what you think.

Thanks in advance for your help.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 03:17 PM
August 16, 2002
Preordained Before the Beginning of Time

The second day of school and it has already happened (though a slight variation of the original)! Here's the scoop: We were getting ready to go to specials which today were PE and Music. In PE students must wear tennis shoes so a few students were changing into their tennies. One student, Bo (name has been changed) was searching through his backpack desperately when he said... are you ready for this...

"Where in tarnation?!?!?"

Well thankfully, I wasn't giving directions because I had to take a moment to myself to regain composure. It never stops making me laugh.

Today on recess duty, Jeff (student last year) saw me and began running toward me full steam with his arms out wide. He talked to me the whole recess, the other kids that I had last year that were standing around me could hardly get a word in. ("Ally, I'm talking to Mr. Wright, you go play.") I must say, I secretly enjoy when I see one of last year’s students in the hall and they can hardly contain themselves. I of course, don't encourage it because they usually get in trouble by their current teachers.

Today went better than the first day. To answer Heather's question in the comments, no names on Not Responsible yesterday, 4 today with one check mark, I got mean today. Even raised my voice once, but didn't yell, I save that for the BIG issues.

I talked to JD yesterday and he said his day went well. He evidently has earned the reputation of having really hard classes. For those keeping score Heidi was the mean one.

I'm looking forward to the weekend, a relaxing one, with little movement.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 06:25 PM
August 15, 2002
I Made It!

It is so awesome to see the power of prayer work. I think it is there all the time but we just don't take the time to notice it. Well I didn't have to take anytime to notice it today, it was in action. The day went great (I was a little concerned when one of my kids asked me how to make a "d," a print "d".) Everything went together well and all transitions were as smooth as a baby's butt. That can't be said for the rest of the school. This was our first year of all day Kindergarten and well for those of you who haven't had any prolonged (much more than a week) experience with working with really young children don't really have a clue of what a feat that is. It's huge and today, as expected was rough. I'm glad I am not a kindergarten teacher (for more than one reason).

My class this year is very different from my class last year. Last year I had more than my share of kids with BIG personalities, as a result it took me quite awhile to fit all those personalities into one room and for them to realize that I was the biggest personality. I learned to control them and learned to love them. This year, so far, this class is quite the opposite. There are really no big personalities at all, at least not the size that I had last year. They are kind of like "I don't care, whatever." Only one complained when I assigned a big writing assingment on the first day (and I put a quick end to that!) These of course are first impressions and like last year I am sure that they will change with time, especially if I loose of gain any kids over the year.

So it is a good beginning to the year. We will see tomorrow as the honeymoon begins to end.

Posted by Christopher at 07:33 PM
Here Goes Nothing!!!

Again thanks for all your support. You guys are awesome!!!!!

Don't forget JD. First year of teaching and no student teaching. Wouldn't want to be in the position that he is in. Hehe.

And I'm not sure when Anna is starting but she will have her hands full!

Well I a leaving.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 06:50 AM
August 14, 2002
No Quizzes This Time

Tomorrow I begin my first day as a third grade teacher with students in the classroom. This teacher has not done his homework. I don't really have any formal plans for tomorrow, I have an idea of what I want to do, but let's just say that I will be winging it. It makes sense that I am writing in my blog instead of writing some notes down. At least I'm not doing any of those extremely addicting quizzes! I'm sure you are glad too.

I had a whole day of working in my room today and I still did not get any plans done because I was busy doing stuff for other people, like installing print drivers, picking up computers, writing field trip notes (I am going on Friday, September 13th... look at that date again... Yes, I'm doomed.)

Tuesday was open house, kids could come to meet me and see the room. One of my favorite people made a cameo appearance: Jeff, who I have written about on many occasions in this blog! I was talking to three different parents about three different things, when I hear from across the room (imagine Dennis the Menace from the old black and white TV series) "Heeeeeeeeeeey Mr. Wright! Guesssss who's here!" Unfortunately I didn't get to talk with him.

Tonight I was getting ready to drive back to Rolla and I remembered that I had a hair cut appointment that I was sure I missed. Had no clue when it was but I was sure that I had missed it. I called to make another appointment and Donna (the Saint who cuts my hair) says, "Aren't you the Chris that is down for tonight at 9:00 pm?" I told her that I was not sure but I would come by and if another Chris showed up I would leave. She started on my hair at about 8:50, I was feeling awful lucky, when the door opend and Donna said, "Oh, hi Chris." Oppps. Well I had the fastest hair cut that I had ever had!

I would like to thank everyone who said that they were praying for me and this school year. I covet your prayers (can you do that?). I have been praying quite a lot for this class and that God would equip me to best meet my kids' needs. Thank you agian.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 10:31 PM
August 12, 2002
Overheard or Seen At Teacher Meetings

-----
Directions on a bag of M&M's:

Teacher Vitamins

Here is a bag of teacher vitamins. Follow this simple guide to solve all your problems:

-Take a BLUE pill when under too much beginning school stress.
-When undergoing meeting overload take a RED pill.
-Take the BROWN pill when you need a quick chocolate fix.
-For inspiration while creating bulletin boards swallow a YELLOW pill.
-Running out of cash at the end of the month, try a GREEN pill.
-Developing a headache from long term planning, pop an ORANGE pill.

If all symptoms appear at once eat the whole bag.

WARNING: Teacher Vitamins may cause weight gain.
-----
"You will just have to be flexible on Thursday (the first day of school), there will be a lot of crying and a lot of vomiting; and then the kids will get here." --Principal discussing the need for flexibility on the first day of school.
-----
"Well they can come in from recess, then we can milk them, and take them back out." --Teacher discussing the possibility of a weekly extra reward recess and getting there snack milk in as well.
-----
"There's a teacher code of ethics too!" --New teacher joking around when another teacher asked if something was in the teacher code of ethics.
-----
Teachers are funny.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 07:03 PM
August 11, 2002
Messed Up

Well as you can see the blog is a mess and a bit different. I was adding some more links to the template when bam! the blog went all weird on me. The style sheet was not working. So I went back to MovableType to get the default style sheet and changed the style a bit. I did not have time to get everything back in order so that is why things look a little odd. I'm not sold on this style so things could be changing even more. So please excuse he mess.

Well I officially go back to work tomorrow. I say officially becuase I have been there for the last three weeks. Tomorrow, Tuesday, and Wednesday will be teacher meetings and Thursday is the first day of school with the kids and I must say that I am nervous. Changing grades has made this feel like my first year of teaching again! I suppose that the nervous feeling never goes away. Cursive scares me, and so does the MAP test.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 11:01 PM
July 29, 2002
The 21st Century Teacher Applicant

Let me see if I've got this right. You want me to go into that room with
all those kids and fill their every waking moment with a love for
learning. Not only that, I'm supposed to instill a sense of pride in
their ethnicity, behaviorally modify disruptive behavior, observe them
for signs of abuse and T-shirt messages.


I am to fight the war on drugs and sexually transmitted diseases, check
their backpacks for guns and raise their self-esteem. I'm to teach them
patriotism, good citizenship, sportsmanship and fair play, how and where
to register to vote, how to balance a checkbook and how to apply for a job.


I am to check their heads occasionally for lice, maintain a safe
environment, recognize signs of potential antisocial behavior, offer
advice, write letters of recommendation for student employment and
scholarships, encourage respect for the cultural diversity of others,
and, oh yeah, always make sure that I give the girls in my class 50
percent of my attention.


I'm required by my contract to be working on my own time summer and
evenings at my own expense toward advance certification and a master's
degree; and after school, I am to attend committee and faculty meetings
and participate in staff development training to maintain my employment status.


I am to be a paragon of virtue larger than life, such that my very
presence will awe my students into being obedient and respectful of
authority. I am to pledge allegiance to supporting family values, a
return to the basics, and to my current administration. I am to
incorporate technology into the learning, and monitor all Web sites
while providing a personal relationship with each student. I am to
decide who might be potentially dangerous and/or liable to commit crimes
in school or who is possibly being abused, and I can be sent to jail for
not mentioning these suspicions.


I am to make sure all students pass the state and federally mandated
testing and all classes, whether or not they attend school on a regular
basis or complete any of the work assigned. Plus, I am expected to make
sure that all of the students with handicaps are guaranteed a free and
equal education, regardless of their mental or physical handicap. I am
to communicate frequently with each student's parent by letter, phone,
newsletter and grade card.


I'm to do all of this with just a piece of
chalk, a computer, a few books, a bulletin board, a 45 minute
more-or-less plan time and a big smile, all on a starting salary that
qualifies my family for food stamps in many states. Is that all? And you
want me to do all of this and expect me

NOT TO PRAY?

Source Unknown

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 09:35 AM
July 19, 2002
I Come Back to You Now At the Turn of the Tide

Well I have started preparing for the new school year. I spent several hours in my new classroom Thursday and plan to do so again today. The problem is actually working and not talking with other folks. I am actually getting a late start when compared to some of the other teachers. A husband of one of the new second grade teachers said, "Well so much for three months off." I chuckled to myself. I am having trouble deciding how I want to set up the room and as a result I am have trouble getting anything else done. I just want to get it done so that I can worry about other things.

I am also getting ready to finish up my first two online courses through MU. I haven't decided if I am going to take any in the Fall. What I really need to do is take the GRE so I can be admitted. Well I have six year left to get the degree. Sigh.

TODAY'S THOUGHT: 1 Corinthians 15:33

P.S. Pat on the back for the person who can name the movie that the title of this blog entry comes from. Hint: The movie has not been released yet. Hehe. Pressed, you can't guess.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 10:57 AM
June 03, 2002
The Battle of the Universities

Sorry about the cheesy title.

Well, I have signed up for graduate classes on-line for this summer from Mizzou. I will be working on getting a Master's in Educational Technology.

I enrolled in two classes for the summer, Introduction to Web Development and Foundations of Educational Technology. Both sound thrilling don't they? One glitch. I got a letter from Mizzou saying that they had no record of my degree. I thought this odd because I had asked and paid for SBU to send my transcripts to Mizzou at the beginning of May. This ticked me off a bit cause ECC, which is not known for having all their eggs in a row, sent my transcripts. I called SBU today and they said they had sent those records back on May 6. I called up Mizzou to check and make sure that they had gotten the records and why they had sent me this nasty letter. As it turns out, they had all my records that I have sent to them, they had not sent it to all the correct offices. Whew! No reason to be upset with SBU.

And thank goodness for toll free numbers!!

That is ALL that I have done today. This doing nothing has its limits and I have had about enough of it for awhile. Tomorrow I am going to Six Flags for a little fun, that is if it does not rain.

Mr. Wright, (everyone needs a toll-free number) out!

Posted by Christopher at 05:32 PM
May 23, 2002
Year One: Thoughts

Well my first year is over and I made it. As I think about all that this year brought, and I am speaking strictly professionally, I think that it has been very successful.

My class, who at the beginning of the year, prompted many other teachers to say something like, "Oh, Chris, I'm so sorry. I'm not sure how a class like that got together." turned out to be a bunch of kids that I am extremely proud of. They may not have been the best behaved class, but we had character and lots of it!!!! I think I actually made a difference too! That is a satisfying feeling. Hearing the principal say that the class is totally different from the beginning of the year and they are one of the most caring and sharing classes in school makes me think that something was done correctly.

Parents of the children, have been WAY too kind to me. They have said some very kind things supporting what I have done and encouraging me to continue.

I could not have landed at a better school. Wyman is quite simply the best! The second grade faculty has been the best of the best. We have gotten along so well, not one single argument, which is rarely heard of. When I got the job I was concerned about second grade. It was the grade that I knew the least about. Looking back, I can say that being in second grade has been a blessing, simply because of the people that I work with.

The folks at Wyman have a tradition on the last day of school. As the last bus is leaving the bus room, all the teachers line the halls clapping while the song Celebrate is played over the intercom. Then after all the students are gone the real fun begins! All the teachers that are retiring are given a paper crown and are loaded up on a cart that is decorated with streamers. They are pushed down the hall toward the doors "for the last time" and they toss candy to the teachers lining the hall. After that, teachers who are able, do cartwheels down the halls and then the teachers who are... not so able join in by doing somersaults, pseudo-cartwheels and quite frankly, flopping about on the floor. It is quite a sight. This year we were even treated to sight of the retiring teachers dancing back down the hall. It was a good time. Teachers from other schools rush over to Wyman just to see all the fun.

It is awesome to look back over this year and see how what I originally thought was chance (being hired at Rolla) and happenstance (ending up in second grade) and in some cases misfortune (THIS CLASS?!?!?!?) turned out to be God's totally awesome plan. Before I got this job I was beginning to worry and wonder if I was even going to get a job. I had the ignorance to question God's sovereignty over everything. It is nice to sit back and acknowledge that now.

Now on to next year...

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 06:14 PM
May 22, 2002
Days in the Sun

Well the last week of school has been nothing but play. Tuesday we went to Lion's Club Park for a day long picnic. I helped supervise the basketball games. The rays of the sun reflected off of the white concrete.

Today we went to UMR to watch the Golden Eagles parachute. It started out really cool, they jumped out and did some twirls with smoke. When I started to really get into it (and the students) when it ended. It lasted all of what seemed like two seconds. Below is a picture that one of those clever librarians snapped of me while I was having fun.

MVC-010S.JPG

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 09:10 PM
May 09, 2002
Field Day

I'm not a big field day fan. I can't remember enjoying them as a child and I even subbed in a fifth grade classroom on field day (hated that!). Today, was my first field day at Wyman. Good news! It was very well organized. Look as some cool pics of our day here!

Leave your field day memories in comments link below!

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 10:07 PM
May 03, 2002
What Does Mounting Mean?

The librarians at my school like to make life difficult for me. I don't know why. I have been nothing but nice to them but they continue to just complicate my life.

For example. The day before Christmas break I was going to show A Charlie Brown Christmas to the class. Some other teacher with more senority than I wanted the film and so the film that I got was called The Pebble, or something like that. It was basically about these peguins wanting to mate and they attract the opposite sex by carrying around a pebble. Ugh! Jeff yelled (cause he yells everything), "Mr. Wright, is this movie rated G?"

Well they continued to complicate my life Moday when they allow, Cain (not his real name) to check out a book about hamsters. Innocent enough, right? Not so much. Cain brought up the book and asked, "Mr. Wright, what does mounting mean?"

"What?"

Cain showed me the book with a picture of a hamster on top of another one. The caption: "To mate, a hamster will mount..." I don't remember the rest nor do I remember what I said to him.

Let's just say, vengence is a dish best served cold!

Mr. Wright, out!

*NOTE* The above is to be read as a sarcastic diatribe and slightly blown out of proportion. The librarians are actually very helpful, unless they are angry and then they become kinda unpleasant. (That is sarcastic too.)

Posted by Christopher at 02:56 PM
May 02, 2002
An Awesome Thing

An awesome thing happened this morning. I got to school at about 7:20 this morning, like normal. I went about my usual routine, starting up computers, making copies, counting up table points, etc. When I heard a teacher outside my room say that it was National Prayer Day and that they were getting a group of teachers to pray around the flag pole. That naturally got my attention and headed out of the room in a flash. Sure enough we gathered around the flag pole and prayed for the kids, the administration, parents, and teachers.

How awesome is that? We were standing around the flag pole, right next to where the kids are getting off the bus and parents are dropping off kids. It was a wonderful surprise this morning and I needed it to make it through the day.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 06:05 PM
May 01, 2002
May

May is the busiest month EVER! Something everyday. I hope I make it!

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 09:34 PM
April 25, 2002
The Cave

Well where to begin? Today was my day to go on a field trip to Meramec Caverns. Yesterday Mrs. Rinehart and Mrs. Eyeberg went. Now I was kinda of put in charge of this whole fiasco cause, well, it was my idea. Last time I open my mouth! I was nervous all day because I knew that I missed some little detail and I messed everything up. Last weekend I even had a panic attack that I had put the wrong dates on the permission slips that went home. I even got to school on Tuesday at 7:00 am just to put my mind at ease. (We didn't have school on Monday.) Everything was fine for Mrs. Rinehart and Mrs. Eyeberg, with the exception of a few money problems that were not my fault.

Today was Mrs. Baxter and my day to go. Now my class has gotten alot better behavior wise since the beginning of the year, but I still have a few little darlings that really need to be put on a leash for the safety of themselves and those around them. One of those little guys is Jeff (not his real name but the same kid mentioned on the About this Site Page. For days, I have been coming up with strategies for handling Jeff while 34 stories underground, from falling into the river, to becoming separated from the group and discovering a new section of the cave that no one knew about. As it turns out I had no reason to worry because Jeff is terrified of the dark. For the whole hour and a half tour Jeff had a death grip on me with, usually, two hands! The guide was telling the kids that if they get separated from the group and if the lights go out to stop feel to the left for the hand railing and scream. Jeff proudly announced, "I don't have to worry about that because I got a teacher!" I didn't tell Jeff that I forgot my night vision goggles on the bus. At one point Jeff told me that he wished his mother had never signed that stupid permission slip.

Wow, this is getting be a long entry. If you would like to read about the situation that I wasn't totally prepared for, click more below.

After the tour, I allowed the students to look through the gift shop with specific instructions that if a child did not have money to just look and not touch. Mrs. Baxter and I were on patrol to make sure that students followed the instructions. We got the kids out of the gift shop without incident (with the exception of the couple of students who were crying because they did not have any money to buy anything, Jeff being on of them). We started eating our lunches outside when Caleb (again, not his real name) came up to proudly display his new red cowboy hat and $8.00 watch. Now, I knew that Caleb did not have any money so I asked him how he got it. He said that he bought it. I asked to see a receipt. He had none after I explained what one was. Then he changed his story and said another parent had bought them for him. I may be stupid but I'm no idiot, so Caleb and I went back into the gift shop and I asked all the clerks. None of them remembered Caleb or the purchase. I made him return the items and apologized. Needless to say that Caleb has lost a whole lot of privileges for the rest of the year.

Well I am tired and I need to take a small nap.

I hate field trips, especially when I am in charge of them.

Mr. Wright, out finally!

Posted by Christopher at 05:16 PM
April 23, 2002
Front Page! Whoo hoo!

Well I have made the front page of the newspaper. Well at least my classroom door and the sign I made did.

rolladailynews.jpg

Cool!

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 06:05 PM
April 17, 2002
Street Beat and Panties

Another field trip today. Today we went to UMR to see Street Beat. It was basically a history of Jazz dance starting in the 20's and going up to the 90's. The kids enjoyed it, but my favorite part would be during the swing dance section of program. Of course the ladies were being lifted up and they did some flips. One of my students next to me, Seth (not his real name) said to me, "Mr. Wright, they are lifting those girls up so that I can see their panties!" After I stopped laughing, I explained that they weren't panties. Oh, it is never dull.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 09:45 PM
April 13, 2002
Wrapping Up Loose Ends

It has been a busy time at school. Next week we are beginning the yearly testing. The second grade will be taking the Terra Nova test.

Some might be wondering about what happened with the movie. Well, it was interesting. Most of my students didn't get into the movie before it started because we were in the lobby getting popcorn. As I expected most of the little guys there could barely sit there for a half hour. This movie was not made with the attention span of a first or second grader in mind.

One event that did happen, thankfully not to one of my students involves a childs arm, the cup holder in the seat and large amounts butter substitute. A child in the Transitional Class got so bored that he decided to see if his arm could fit in the cup holder. Much to his excitment, his arm did go in, however, he was not so excited when it didn't come back out! On of the other students reported this to his teacher and the teacher went to help the child. One problem, even with the teacher's help his arm was still caught in the hole. The teacher went to get a tub of butter and brought it back. She slathered up his arm and it slipped right out. Lets just say that I laughed my butt off.

If you have seen The Rookie you know that it is very long. So long that we barely got back in time to the school. But we made it back.

Over last weekend, I went to Texas to Youth Lab for youth leaders and workers. The event was well worth the time and money invested in it. My hope is that it will help the leaders including myself better serve the youth in our church.

Some of the speakers also helped me confirm some of the things that I a doing in my class with some of my more diffucult students.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 08:11 PM
April 02, 2002
Back to Work

Back to work! Today was a pretty good day. The kids seemed pretty low key today, which was just fine with me! As I expected, the servers, AR, and e-mail were not working. However, the phones are working, JOY!

I stayed at school to help out with the fundraiser until 6:00 and then voted.

Tomorrow I am taking my class to see The Rookie. That should be fun. I read a review that said something to the effect of people with short attention span should NOT see this movie. I get the pleasure of taking 22 little short attention spans to see this!

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 07:35 PM
March 26, 2002
Spring Break

Spring break is finally here and it is well deserved for me and the kids in my class. It was a rough week at school last week. The administration building caught on fire in the middle of the week and destroyed all the servers, phone system, records, etc. It was nice not having the phone ring in the middle of the day though!

They have said that the new servers will be up and running by the time we get back on the second. They already have part of the website back up and running. So I do get Spring break but there are several people who don’t.

Mr. Wright, out!

Posted by Christopher at 03:19 PM