Thursday, July 22, 2010

Summer dreams

School may have ended, but my dreams about it have not -- at least Ms. Flecha's most recent post has reassured me that I'm not the only teacher who dreams about school over the summer.    Most of my dreams have been of the "it's a regular day in school but something seems wrong for some reason" variety; of course, after I wake up, I realize that something seems wrong for some reason because schooooooool's. OUT. FOR. SUMMER!  (Sing that like Alice Cooper, baby.)  In one nightmare, my (former) principal was observing me in math, and I was panicking internally because I was going to have to pull some strategy lessons out of my you-know-where, and my mind was shrieking, "But didn't we already get permission to take apart our data binders?!"  (In fact, we never did receive an e-mail granting us permission, and my AP came looking for some of my spreadsheets on the last day of school, so I waited until literally the moment before I walked out of the building -- walked out of the building forever, mind you -- to dismantle my data binders and throw away my data.  Hundreds of pieces of paper, forests of trees, wasted.)  

My most recent dream was a peculiar dream-meld of my former school and my new school: In it, I was team teaching, but with a former colleague, and I told her I'd be leaving the school.  Our schedule for the day had "dance" on it (my new school has more arts, theater, music and dance enrichment programs available than my former school), but at that point the dream took a major digression (as dreams often do), wherein I may have been a student on the way to class myself.

But no such luck, I'm still a teacher -- while in Colorado on vacation, Mr. Brave and I made a pit stop at Target to buy shaving cream, and I was lured into the Dollar Spot like a bear to honey.  If you're a teacher and you haven't experienced the sensory overload of the Dollar Spot, get yourself to Target -- they actually do have useful supplies for educators that come way cheaper than the ones in those Carson-Dellosa/Oriental Trading/Really Good Stuff catalogues.  (I love Really Good Stuff -- I would buy all their really good stuff if I could -- but who can pay thirty dollars for a set of desk nametags when you can buy a set at the Dollar Spot for 1/30th of the price?)  Poor Mr. Brave had to pack my bounty of little pointers and bookmarks and birthday badges in between his clothes so they wouldn't get crushed on the trip back.  (Yes, there are Targets in New York, but the one in Colorado had tantalizing supplies I'd never seen before.)  

While I was away, my new principal sent an e-mail to his new hires about a workshop he wanted us to attend before school started.  I replied that I was familiar with the program but I would attend anyway -- and he wrote back that the workshop was really for beginners and there was absolutely no need for me to attend something superfluous.  It was a really simple exchange, but it strengthened the good feeling I've had about my new principal and school.

Now, if only we could do something about the heat...!  I can't believe I was out of town for two weeks and it's been this hot the entire time I was gone.

Lastly, this is belated, but in my first year of teaching I made a "School's Out" playlist.  I dedicate it to all my fellow teachers who are enjoying a relaxing and well-deserved summer off:

1. "Freedom," George Michael
2. "Salt of the Earth," The Rolling Stones
3. "Forever Young," Rod Stewart
4. "Damn It Feels Good to be a Gangster," Ghetto Boys
5. "School's Out," Alice Cooper
6. "At Last," Etta James
7. "Child," Low Stars
8. "The Best of What's Around," Dave Matthews Band
9. "Better Days," Bruce Springsteen
10. "Bigger Than My Body," John Mayer
11. "You Can't Always Get What You Want," The Rolling Stones
12. "I Need a Holiday," Scouting for Girls
13. "Long Time Comin'," Bruce Springsteen
14. "How Far We've Come," Matchbox Twenty
15. "It's All Over Now Baby Blue," Them
16. "All Will Be Will," The Gabe Dixon Band
17. "Summer in the City," The Lovin' Spoonful
18. "See You in September," The Happenings