peachyteachy

For realsies

No Such Thing as a Free Lunch February 16, 2017

Filed under: humor,teaching,Uncategorized — peachyteachy @ 8:08 pm
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Part One: Breakfast

So they say, those naysayers who have never witnessed the veritable smorgasbord that is crafted for our youth at Peachytime Elementary on a daily–nay, semi-hourly–basis. Oh, look.  I have become a naysayer.

I am here to report that no one is going hungry during our school days; not the mice, not the kids, except for those who require ranch dressing for most every menu item here at Chez Peachytime Cafe.

Let me break it down for you:

Ms. Peachy circa 8:23 a.m.:

GOOD MORNING, SUNSHINE! Get your breakfast, plasticware, and a pencil and start chomping! You have 7 minutes to eat your

Cinnamon Toast Crunch

Wonder Waffle in a Bag

Cream Cheese trapped in Bagel Dough

Muffin of Crumb

Rice Chex or Mouse Chex

Plus milk. Which reminds me,

PLEASE SPILL YOUR MILK EXACTLY ONE MINUTE BEFORE TIME TO LINE UP FOR THE HALL! SPILL IT WELL! SPILL IT UPON THE RUG! AND PLEASE SOAK IT UP WITH ONE LINEAR MILE OF THE LEAST ABSORBENT PAPER TOWELS AVAILABLE ON PLANET EARTH. GOOD JOB.

OH GOD I FORGOT TO COMPLETE THE SPREADSHEET DETAILING EXACTLY HOW MANY EATERS HAVE EATEN. IT’S A LEGAL DOCUMENT! I COULD SINGLE-HANDEDLY PUT OUR FEDERAL FOOD ELIGIBILITY IN PERIL! 8:40 AND I’M ALREADY SUCKING!

Spreadsheet and remaining food must go back to the cafeteria now, with data and in its breakfast cozy crate–pick the kids least likely to careen down the stairs with the straps around their necks. This, while five more kids arrive and need to take their breakfast from the crate carriers before we all joyfully walk to specials, hopefully not music. They hate music. Music is too happy. I tell them that it’s forty minutes of their lives and we can get through forty minutes of anything.

My inner monologue: “Forty minutes you’ll never get back…”

 

 

It’s All in How You Look At It November 1, 2015

Filed under: humor,nurse,school — peachyteachy @ 1:00 pm
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Consider my colleague, who teaches some youngsters who tend to see things from a different point of view.  On top of the usual requests to go see the nurse because “My finger hurts,” or “I have bumps on my face,” she found out last week that one of her kids (we’ll call her Princess I’m Telling) suffers from an even more serious condition.

This affliction is characterized, according to the student, by the presence of “blue marks all over my arms.”

Markers! If you guessed that markers played a role in the onset, you would get a sticker for good thinking, but you would have missed it by just a smidge.

Upon closer inspection, it became apparent that PIT was suffering from circulation.  Which is to say that the telltale blue marks turned out to be none other than the veins in her arms.  It would seem that she had not detected their presence in her previous eight years of life. Neither, I guess, had she noticed these strange markings on others of her species.

Suffice it to say that we are quite prepared to put money on the odds of her nailing the state tests in the spring. It’s right in step with the odds of winning the MegaMillions.

Because, hey, you never know.

 

Charity Begins at School? October 21, 2015

Filed under: education,humor,school — peachyteachy @ 6:18 pm
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I’ve missed you too.

Inertia is a powerful force.

The world keeps spinning, I keep teaching, and my students keep it weird.

This fall, I decided to launch a charity drive with my kids; one that would serve as an “informed action.” Action, we got. Not sure about the information translation.  We made posters! Yaay, posters!

Today I reviewed the posters!

My sample poster said something about “As Seen on. . .” and I referred to a well-known YouTuber.  So, of course, many of my darlings felt compelled to copy that—or to try to copy it.

Least Publishable Poster Copy award: instead of “As Seen On,” the poster reads, “Ass semen.”

Back when I used to blog about the horrors of urban fifth grade, that would have been intentional, and misspelled. Now, it’s just an adorable error, and a strangely missing poster.

In other news, one of my most challenging students—a gentleman who is training to clock some 300+ miles by lapping the school—did an impressive impersonation of Marty Feldman in “Young Frankenstein,” dramatically limping his way toward his favorite destination: HALLWAY! USA! USA!

Yup, some things never change.

Image:  https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/66/86/de/6686deed228ee06b46540fb210b68b20.jpg

 

First Week Of School–Peachy Prevails! September 6, 2014

Am I exhausted? Yup.

Am I already playing catch up? Yeah.

Did a student ask me if I was going to give them the money to buy their supplies? Yes, indeed.

It’s been a loooooooooooooooong week.  I lost a couple of dear friends to other assignments.  Teachers get tight. It’s hard to lose close friends and supports in a building.

We have added an hour and a half to the school day.  Buses are late. Little children are so tired. Conversation with a sweet little guy waiting for a bus reveals that he is from Tanzania, then Congo.  They left because it was dangerous. “All these people were coming.   There were things falling from the sky.” Wow.

While I am responsible for “digging deep” into targeted instruction aligned to the Common Core, I consider the challenge of making a kid like this feel safe more crucial.

Today, my kid (my actual kid) forgot that he was on the phone with me when he “put me down” for a minute to check out at the grocery store. It was hilarious; I don’t take this shit personally.  He had been telling me about his “budget-making” adventure. Part of this included a long-term goal of giving 10% to charity. My son has surpassed my virtue. I’m so cool with that.

 

Report Card Comments: End of Year Survival Report July 1, 2013

I wish that I could have included this video somehow in the final report cards of about eight of my students this year, because this pretty much captures their learning this year.  Eight kids who are making and shooting “paper hornets” on a daily basis has a pretty profound impact on the hygiene and learning of a classroom.  I believe that I have mentioned my students’ impressive ability to crease paper more effectively by spitting upon it.  They do not possess an overwhelming generosity of spirit, but they are really quite selfless when it comes to giving up and dispersing their saliva.

If you are new to Peachy’s report card comments, you may be picturing a pale suburban clientele, in which case you would be sadly misled.  Aren’t they adorable?

My class is a bit less enthusiastic. And if they all put their hands up like that, people would be losing consciousness within seconds. We don’t encourage that nonsense. No, mine are more like this:

But let’s get down to it—the bane of the educator’s existence.  The comments.  The comments I tackle here will tend to revolve around students for whom the teacher scratches her head for minutes on end, just trying to come up with one small piece of insight that offers a suitably hazy filter.  You don’t need any guidance to come up with comments for that class up there. . .Well, maybe that one with the Christmas bow in her hair.

We try to include some tidbit of data—this is really for the administrators, as parents really don’t have a huge interest in that numerical food by which we live and die.  Thus, in our nicely laundered comment, we may say something like this:

El Capitan is reading 120 words per minute.  He has mastered his multiplication facts through 5.  El Capitan should continue to read challenging chapter books and practice skip counting daily this summer.  Good luck in sixth grade!

Truth:

El Capitan can sound out words but has no clue as to the meaning of what he reads.  This is especially apparent when he constructs “paper hornets” under his desk during reading tasks.  Although you have been unable to penetrate the force field surrounding the school this year, I have learned that the library is four steps away from your home, and people are permitted to borrow and read books from there. They have a lot of them.  Also, my dog can skip count by fives.  Step it up. GOOD LUCK in sixth grade. 

Slightly altered from reality:

LaShaw’na has demonstrated an interest in graphic design—this, combined with her expanding vocabulary, have resulted in a colorful social studies project during this marking period.  LaShaw’na has also developed a unique note-taking strategy.  Read, read, read! Good luck in sixth grade, LaShaw’na!

Truth:

LaShaw’na embellishes her textbooks, her desk, her pantlegs, and her arms with the proper noun, “Bitch Ass.”  She consistently spells “Bitch Ass” correctly!  I am guessing that this is the given name of an older relative, first name “Bitch,” last name “Ass.”  It would be fantastic if Bitch Ass could spend some time reading with LaShaw’na this summer, as she tends to stare blankly when asked questions such as, “What happened in that last sentence we read?” Good effing LUCK next year!

Made up niceties:

Dennis has an affinity for physical fitness, the fine arts, and for word study.  I am confident that he will make his mark on middle school! Good luck in 6th grade!

Truth:

Once, Dennis said the word “wheat” (pronounced “hweat”) three thousand times in the space of fifteen minutes. He has launched a small business selling transparent tape sculptures of zombies, and has clean-and-jerked a large table.  These activities have proven to be slight obstacles to learning, as the words get blurry when one is sprinting past the classroom door.  Remember, snack is not provided in the In-School Suspension room at middle school.  But the lunch is equally delicious! GLI6G!

Teachers everywhere, have a lovely summer.

 

End of Year Fun–Take It Seriously June 3, 2012

Filed under: education,humor,school — peachyteachy @ 3:57 pm
Tags: , , , ,

21-3=18

Check the handy dandy countdown calendar over there in the doobly-doo.

Eighteen more days until the last day of school for students!!!!! Far too many exclamation marks for a highly effective teacher, I know (or for a highly effective writer).  But surely you remember the excitement and anticipation of the end of school and the beginning of summer vacation.  In school days, that’s thirteen and a half! After that, I will have the opportunity to re-calibrate my socio-psycho orientation through intensive therapies involving the absence of poorly spelled profanity and of heated debates regarding someone’s mama, grandma, and the entirety of their generation.  Word to me, civility will surround me like a blanket.

As thrilling as it all is, it has been dampened a bit by the fact that our district decided very late in the game (six weeks ago) that it would implement the new thousand point, computer-based teacher evaluation system that was originally slated to begin next year. Just in selected schools (ours included). Goody.

What does this mean in real life application? It means that everyone who is being evaluated via this system must undergo a scheduled and an unscheduled observation, complete with major questionnaire and lesson plan and lengthy conferencing with administrator.  Doing this during the last 13 1/2 days of school does pose a few problems, not the least of which being that June is typically not the apex of the instructional year, for teachers or for students. You might expect to see students spending a bit more time outside than usual at this time of year (for our school, that would mean spending any time at all outside), or perhaps playing games, like Around the World or even the much-loved Heads Up, Seven Up.  A math lesson during the last two weeks of school should include some component of students using cotton swabs to clean chalk trays.  This doesn’t translate real well into a learning objective that is expected to be posted for every lesson.  Still, I shall give it the old college try:

Objective: Students will estimate the number of cotton swabs required to clean a chalk tray to spotless perfection, then determine the actual result by conducting an experiment.

Objective: Students will supplement previous research about careers in the custodial field by using appropriate noxious chemicals to bring their desks to an acceptable level of cleanliness, then will compose a five-paragraph essay describing their process.

Objective: Students will improve their fine motor skills by removing every single staple from every single bulletin board or surface within two miles of the classroom,  thus obtaining clearance to receive their report cards and leave the school.  This lesson will be differentiated for different learning needs by allowing some students to remove masking tape, some to remove sticky-goop, and others to remove traditional staples.

Add to all of this the fact that our rooms were stripped of any personal AC units last year, and you’ve got yourself a sticky, sweaty mess 0′ attempted learning that will supposedly be going on right up to the bitter end.  Let the countdown begin. . .

image: http://www.makems.com/graphic/schools-out-for-summer.gif

 

 
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