Wednesday, February 28, 2007

An Inconvenient Truth

We've been doing a brief filler unit (1/3 of the students are away at camp this week) revolving around "An Inconvenient Truth." There is certainly a lot there to draw students in, but I have to say that it is a little sad when sixth graders are finding errors in the book.

Student: This book lies.
Teacher A: Oh?
S: Yeah. See here where they say this [difference between two glacier photos] is 15 years? The photos are from 1978 and 2006, so that's almost twice that.
TA: ...You're right. They're 28 years apart. I don't know what to tell you.

This is why I don't have nice things

So I finally found a pair of non-jean pants that I really like (finally meaning December, but you know what I mean). They fit well and make me look casual-professional. Sometime during the morning, though, I managed to tear a big hole in the butt without even realizing it. It looks like I snagged myself on something, and unfortunately the hole doesn't look like it can be repaired. On a positive note, I think I handled the whole students-telling-me-my-pants-were-ripped thing quite well. I only turned pink instead of beet red and I mostly felt frustrated instead of mortally embarrassed.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Recent searches (and other oddities)

how to become teacher when 8 years old - Yeah, I can't really help you there. I think that might be against child labor laws.

girly bathrooms - One more thing you won't be finding here. I've only recently discovered the miracle that is the plug-in air freshener, so now the cat bathroom no longer smells like a litter box (and nor does the rest of the house near box-changing day).

how to fix blindness explain to a kid - Who do I look like, someone who can explain things clearly to children? Oh, wait...

In other every-day oddities, my school form for financial student aid is due on May 1st. It quite clearly states on the form itself that the application cannot be processed until they can confirm my summer enrollment, however I cannot actually sign up for summer courses until at least April.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

A paradox

It seems that the more things I do (and therefore have to write about), the less time and energy I have to write about them. Quite frustrating. In any case, here is this weekend's activity:
In case you can't tell, that's desert in the background. SoCal snowboarding is just bizarre.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

As A breaks with tradition

After posting an entry this morning with a title repeat (hastily changed), I've decided to stop requiring my titles to begin with the letter 'A.' It was cute for a while, but I think it has moved beyond that, into the range of an annoying nuisance. Notice, though, this title still began with the letter 'A.' This may be a harder habit to break than I first thought.

Apprentice teaching

I've been helping out and observing in my host teacher's classroom all this week. We've decided that I'll start teaching in a week and a half (so soon?!) when they start their new unit. I'll be teaching all about rocks and minerals, which means that I will be learning a lot of this stuff just before I teach it to the kids. Should be interesting. The unit will run for four weeks, at which time the school goes on spring break. After spring break, the students come back to family life, which I'm legally not allowed to teach and for privacy's sake not allowed to be present (which means I get a three week spring break, all in all). After family life, the students move on to studying the atmosphere, which my host teacher tells me is really fun. All in all, I'm looking forward to the next few months.

Monday, February 19, 2007

A in the 21st century

I've been perusing through the archives of Follow That Elephant! and I'd like to give a big thank you to superkimbo for bringing me into 21st century blogging. What am I talking about? RSS feeders. I know you already know about them (I had heard about them), but I didn't know what they did (or how to get one). Apparently I'm not the only one who had an issue reading all their blogs. Now if only Sweet Juniper! would get on the boat, I'd be able to read all my blogs in one place...


Since I declared in writing that spring had come to San Diego, it of course started raining last night just to show me up. Little did the weather realize that I actually wanted it to rain, so that there might be snow in the mountains (and snowboarding). Take that! A little reverse psychology on the weather. Of course, this also means that we couldn't play Frisbee golf today, which we were looking forward to doing. Oh well.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

A change in the wind

Spring has come to San Diego, and I hate it. On Thursday, the wind had a cool edge to it, which made it pleasant to walk around outside. Friday, the wind had a warmth about it and today was just warm and muggy. I hardly even got to wear my second layer of clothing before I'm forced to put it away. I even bought a sweater! (What on earth was I thinking?). I miss having an actual winter. February is just too early for spring.

Friday, February 16, 2007


The second blog I ever started reading, Loobylu, is going on an indefinite hiatus. I understand why, but I'm going to miss her posts and artwork. I hope she comes back soon.

A memory of a dream

I woke up this morning and couldn't figure out whether or not R was teasing me last night. It could have been real, but it also could have just been a dream. I was in a strange semi-conscious state, so even if it was real it didn't feel like it. All I could remember was talking and him making fun of me for my utterances, which didn't seem like him at all, so I figured it was probably a dream. I finally asked him about it, and apparently it wasn't a dream, but the whole incident wasn't quite as I remembered it either. I guess I only became semi-conscious during the latter half of the conversation, as I had started the whole thing by mumbling something. When R asked me was I meant, I said something about lesson plans and dolphins. He kept asking for clarification, which must have been where my memory comes in, and I just became confused and frustrated, as I was making perfect sense in my mind.

This sort of thing used to happen to my best friend from school. We'd have a fight in one of her dreams, but she wouldn't realize that it was a dream until maybe mid-morning. She'd be slightly irate during the morning and I would be oblivious, which is what would usually tip her off that nothing actually happened.

Thursday, February 15, 2007


I got to meet my new class this week. They're so little and adorable! I love them all already. I'm not looking forward to learning all their names, though.

Monday, February 12, 2007

A bottle

I picked up a perscription refill yesterday, and instead of having the pills in a little bottle the pharmacy placed them in a larger bottle. For some reason this really upset me. At first, I was just complaining about the waste of plastic, but really the issue was more than that. The bigger bottle gave the pills more significant in my mind. Big, significant pills are for sick people, and I'm not sick. I'm just a person who has to take some pills. The big bottle just made it all seem more serious and sinister.

Friday, February 09, 2007

A's day

The beginning: slept in an extra 15 minutes because lunches were already made. Yay!

Morning: Boring work stuff. Boo!

Lunch: Hot parsing action! (This is what you get for having lunch with a computer programmer).

Afternoon: Wrangling with the work computer.

Ugh. Another hour and a half, and then it's sweet, sweet freedom. Oh, and take-home midterms. Dang.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

An observation

The problem with shopping for ingredients for recipes is that you neglect those everyday "oh, I'll just throw something together" staples, and then, all of the sudden, you find yourself staring into an empty fridge.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

A is for apprentice

I've just gotten my assignment for my apprentice teaching. I'll be doing sixth grade science in a school conveniently near my university. I'm happy with the assignment, as I've visited the school before and the place seems rather nice, but I'm slightly disappointed at the same time. I had been hoping to stay at the school where I am currently doing AVID tutoring (hoping against the odds, I might add, as they prefer to place us in middle schools). Admittedly the school where I'm being placed is in a very nice neighborhood and the class I visited previously was full of pre-tamed children, but at the school I'm at now the students have so much zest for life. I'm glad I won't be apprentice teaching at the school where I was last quarter, as the kids, though nice individually, would eat me alive. I know that the students I've been assigned to are probably a better match for me, but the ones I have now are just great. I've only been there a few weeks, but I'll miss them when I leave.

Monday, February 05, 2007


We've been watching the 3rd season of "24" and the technical aspects of the show have been drivin R a bit batty. Apparently, to someone who majored in computer engineering, it sounds like they just flipped to the glossary of one of his textbooks and started picking out words - without looking at the definitions. Even I notice that the things they say sound a bit odd, and I'm just a computer user. The upside of this whole situation is that I'm learning a lot about how computers work, because every time R gets annoyed by something they say he then has to pause the show and explain what he is annoyed about.

On the school front, the one AVID student that I have been tutoring in biology now requests me when they're assigning tutors. He also thinks I'll make a good teacher, better than his current biology teacher. Yay! Unfortunately, next Monday will be my last tutoring session, as I just got an e-mail from the head office that I need to come pick up my new assignment. Apprentice teaching, here I come!

Friday, February 02, 2007

Apparently they're getting to me

In my class on the sociology of education we've been discussion the stratification of society and how this related to the equitability of education. All this talk about unequal distribution of resources in a supposedly meritocratic system has warped my brain, as when I was talking to my doctor last night during my physical and she mentioned that the local school had a parent-funded foundation to hire art and P.E. teachers for their school district my fist thought was not "Good for them," as it would have previously been, but rather "Unequal distribution of resources!" I then proceeded to argue with myself over the rights of parents to fully utilize local resources (like money) and to secure a good education for their children.

In more exciting, less philosophical news, I am now 14 pounds lighter than I was last January (I don't own a scale, so the only time I get weighed is at my yearly physical). My LDL is also down (without changing my medication), so my doctor is really proud of me. Apparently my exercise has been paying off.