Monday, February 20, 2017

The Productivity

When I have an extra day to my weekend, my productivity soars.  I didn't get any of the stuff on my To Do list done, per se, but it feels like I accomplished a lot.  Clearly, the extra day is good for my overall demeanor and keeps me from feeling saturnine.

I am going to end this glorious day with some paper grading and some Bachelor watching.  I keep asking my mom to join me in the viewing of this fine show, but she always refuses.  Tonight I called her and earnestly cajoled, "MOM, tonight's the HOME TOWNS!  You've got to tune in."
"I'd rather vomit," she answered.
"I really think you should reconsider," I told her, but I could tell I was getting nowhere. We moved on to other topics.  Everyone has their own likes and dislikes. I have no problem with that.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

The Pond

Goose Pond Fish and Wildlife Area is in our state, just about an hour away.  We drove down there today to make the best out of the bad situation that is global warming.  We saw two whooping cranes.  You might be saying.  Big whoop, whooping cranes, blah blah blah, but let me tell you something my friends.  The whooping crane was once pushed to "the brink of extinction."  In actual fact, the whooping crane is still endangered. Right now there are only about 600 whooping cranes on the planet and, yes, we saw 2 of them this afternoon.  When I showed the woman at the visitor center my photograph, she said, "Yes, those are whoopers.  Congratulations."  Her tone was calm and understated, but I could tell she was excited inside.

We also saw 2 swans and some snow geese and some fabulous sand hill cranes. A friend saw some pelicans at Goose Pond last weekend, but we had no luck in the pelican department. You can't have everything and the sooner some people realize that, the better.  A fine day at Goose Pond.  Let's all remember to support the whooping crane.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

The Chilling

When you get a 3 day, you've got some extra options.  You can chillax on the first day of the three day because you don't need to prove anything to yourself about how you have an interesting life.  You can sit by a fire and read a book without feeling like time's a'wastin' and so is your life.  Today was low key.  I did chip away at one of my many small jobs for the book that's coming out in August that I wrote, but mostly, we just sat around like idle noodles, spinning our wheels.  I spent some time wondering about TwentySomething and #1 Son. I wanted to text and ask them what they were doing, but I fear that gets annoying when I do it more than 4 to 5 times in a week. I'll wait til tomorrow.   Now we're heading to Bloomington's own Comedy Attic to hear Moses Storm.  I have high hopes for that young man.  He said on social media that this is his first time in our cool town.  Maybe we'll invite him over for bagels in the morning.  At any rate, it's no secret to anyone that the Three Day is  a marvel.  There's just no denying.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

The Wonderings

We've been talking about the importance of "curiosity."  We were curious about Juneteenth today, so we learned more about this holiday.  We were also curious about Frederick Douglass, so we read more about him.  We've also been curious about modern slavery and we're starting to gather some info.  There's lots of stuff to wonder about right now.  When I wake up tomorrow, I'll most likely get to wondering again. Let's see what comes of it.

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

The Offense

Okay, people, it's time to get back to blogging.  This weekend was tough with lots and lots of revising. But I did see a play with some good friends and I also watched the super bowl with some other good friends.  So as usual, I fit in the fun even when I'm working like a madwoman.

 I had a phone call with the production team at Heinemann this morning. I was nervous, but everyone was so friendly and interested in the story behind the book.  It's hard to believe that I met my editor 5 years ago at NCTE and now I'm finally done.  There are still tasks, but the book's going to be published in late summer, so no offense, but I'm basically done writing my book.

The Thirdlanders continue to add to my cheer.  This class is pretty great at getting focused.  Yesterday when I announced at the end of the day, "Let's start getting ready for dismissal," several kids yelled out, "Already???!"   One sweet Thirdlander added, "No offense, but these days just fly by."
      "No offense taken, my friend," I replied.  Then I started jabbering at everyone to clean up the tables and floors and we listened to our clean up music CD which is Waltzing Mathilda.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

The Book

I'm working on some revisions for chapter 4.  The working title for the book is Back and Forth:  Teacher Editors and Student Authors.  Though this title will probably change, it's fairly descriptive of what's going on right now.  Lots of backing and forthing as we hash out changes.  It's more fun than in the past because there's more frequent feedback and the revisions are more specific, so I don't have to spend as much time pondering and putzing around.  I have a Skype conference set up with the Heinemann production team in a couple of weeks.  I'm also gathering parent permissions for all the photos and writing samples.  You guys, I'm publishing a book.  It's starting to sink in.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

The Marchers

I love and thank all the marchers from the bottom of my heart.

I couldn't march today because I am in the hospital with a broken hip and fractured femur.  I lost my footing when walking in my driveway and fell in an odd way resulting in a BROKEN HIP and BROKEN FEMUR!  Also, I'm in a body cast.  And one of my eyes needs some kind of surgical procedure because my vision's all messed up because a stick went into my eye.  I'll keep you posted on that.   But  the good news is that you marchers are making me proud and happy and a little bit guilty.  I think anyone in their right mind can understand why I am not with you at this point in time.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

The Lack of Trust

The Thirdlanders came back to school cheerful and ready to take 2017 by storm.  Some highlights from the week involved comparing two news articles about Fidel Castro, researching Marian Anderson, and acting out some key scenes from First Day in Grapes, a book about farm worker families.  We also used the Indy Zoo web page to plan an imaginary field trip, an activity that allows us to create and solve our own elapsed time math problems.

The Thirdlanders are an amazing crew of kiddos.  If they have one drawback, it's probably a general inability to believe what I'm telling them.  Let me illustrate this point by sharing the following conversation as evidence:

Thirdlander:  Can I go to the library?
Me:  Did you sign up for library today?
Thirdlander:  Yes.
Me:  Are you next on the list?
Thirdlander:  Yes.
Me:  Well, you know you don't have to ask.  You just go to the library when your turn comes.
Thirdlander:  So I can go?
Me:  Yes.
Thirdlander:  I can go to the library?
Me:  Yes.
Thirdlander:  I can go right now?
Me:  Yes.

This type of conversation takes place about 50,000 times a day and it can get a little annoying, I'm not going to lie. I wonder why the Thirdlanders don't trust me.  I need to work on earning their trust before this school year ends. I'm going to do my best, and forget the rest.