Posted by: theinnerworld | April 22, 2010

The Scary Part of Social Media

Today at school a fellow teacher had taken an iPhone from another student.  This student was recently in trouble for writing inappropriate things, so when the teacher saw that Facebook was opened on her phone, she took a look.  This student had been sending messages to other boys who were 10-20 years older than her, sending pictures, and inappropriate messages… messages that I couldn’t believe when I was shown them.  This is a good student, who typically gets As and Bs, but who didn’t understand what she was really doing.  I went over and talked to this student and her friends about the dangers of social media and things like Facebook, MySpace, twitter, and Craigslist when you don’t really know who you really are talking to.

Its weird to think how the world of the internet has changed us over the past few years.  When I was in middle school, the only thing we had was AIM, and MySpace was just being invented.  There was no Facebook to stalk your friends on or Craigslist to look for those “missed connections” in your life.  It is scary what the world is coming to when I have 12-year-old students receiving friend requests by 30 year olds.  I hope what I talked to the girls about today helped.  I hope they understand that it’s not that we are trying to punish them or get them in trouble, but that we are legitimately concerned for their safety in life.  That I’m worried one of my kids is going to be taken by a creepy old person who likes children.  That my students are going to be stuck in a scam and have credit issues or identity theft.  When I think about all of the joys of technology, it really does scare me when I think of how innocent and naive my students can be.

Posted by: theinnerworld | April 8, 2010

Why I hate cleaning…

Today began day 1 of the moving adventure into my own place (pictures to come- promise!).  I went over this morning to get the beginning stages of the cleaning bathroom, kitchen, vacuuming, etc.  I opened the fridge and noticed 2 things:

1.  It smelled really bad.

2.  It wasn’t turned on.

Before I turned in on with the circuits, I wanted to check to make sure it was/wasn’t plugged in, so like any normal person I moved the fridge back.

And jumped about a foot in the air.

Staring at me was a MOUSE.  Literally, just sitting there, staring at me!  I WAS FREAKING OUT!!!  Now, this is the girl who worked at petsmart for a summer, playing with cute little animals, like mice, on a daily basis.  But, this drown one scared me like no other.  After my minor heart attack, I decide OK, I can do this, I can kill this mouse.  I took the thing of bleach, sprayed the mouse and prayed that it was already dead.  Which, as it didn’t move, I came the conclusion that it was.  I then positioned the trash can by the mouse, grabbed a rag, and started wiping the mouse into the can.  When it flipped over.

And I saw a squeaker.

Yes, my whole fiasco of freaking out that my new apartment actually has a mouse problem was really just a toy mouse that was stuck behind the fridge.

Happy Thursday everyone.

Posted by: theinnerworld | March 6, 2010

Kids say the darnest thing…

Yesterday I went snowboarding with some of my family to test out the new board.  I also got to leave work 2 hours with no penalties for being sweet and always having my assignments turned into my principal (yes, that’s what they are called).  When my students found out I was going snowboarding, this is what they came up with:

I was meeting Shaun White

I’m dating Shaun White

We are going on our first date to Chuckie-Cheese

He’s going to meet my mother, and will stay in an igloo in my backyard

We are actually now married

I’m Ms. White, no, now I’m Mrs. White because that’s more proper.

He is picking me up from work to take me snowboarding.

The End.

I love teaching.

Posted by: theinnerworld | March 5, 2010

A trip down memory lane…

Tonight I spent the night looking through old pictures of my trip to Europe and some mementos from my childhood.  I love the fact that growing up I had a father who traveled, who brought me back bits and pieces from around the world.  To be able to bring into my class tomorrow a Chinese calendar from 1998 or a writing set from China is an awesome thing.  I love that I can bring in pictures from my trips to Europe and stories from traveling around Europe.  But, at the same time, looking at the things my dad gave me really miss him.

Its odd how random things cause you to think of people you lost.  Whether it is something as simple as students asking what your dad does or hearing a song that reminds you of him.  For some reason, today was one of those days.  And tomorrow will be a great day to tell about the amazing things MY DAD did in his incredible life:o)

Posted by: theinnerworld | March 2, 2010

Happy Early Birthday to Me:o)

Well, in honor of my birthday being tis week and being a big grown up, I decided to buy myself a little present.  It came today:o)

Now it just needs to be the weekend for me to test ride it!

Posted by: theinnerworld | February 10, 2010

Snow day= pondering life

I finally have a snow day:o)  After yesterday’s terrible experience of still having to go to school during a snow storm, I figured we would have school today, no questions asked.  BUT, the city of Columbus made a smart choice and canceled school.  So now, I’m at home and instead of doing school work, which I did all day yesterday, I decided to start thinking about next year’s plan… where am I going to go to grad school?  Am I going to apply to more jobs?  Where do I want to teach?

I’m starting by going through and working on my resume, fixing my essay questions, and trying to decide what do I really want to do next year.  I’ve always wanted to study aborad, but it didn’t work out due to my student teaching at OWU.  But, now I could take a year and teach  abroad, maybe in Europe or Asia.  And since we don’t have any major familyevents this upcoming year, it would be possible.  But then again, do I really want to leave for a year?  Do I want to stay at my current job because I get some loans forgiven?  Decisions, decisions.

I thought this would end after college.  Apparently, I was wrong.

Posted by: theinnerworld | February 9, 2010

Let it snow, let it snow… some more please

Since last Friday, it has been snowing cats and dogs in Columbus.  But, if you are not from Columbus, you may laugh at the way people in Columbus react to snow.  THEY GO CRAZY!  Literally.  You see people storming into the grocery store, fighting over milk and bread, while standing there wondering if they have enough water to last them through the end of winter.  No joke.  So you would guess my surprise when I woke up today to a terrible snow storm and learned that I did actually have school today.  One of the three school districts still open in Columbus.  THREE SCHOOLS ONLY!  It was my charter school district, another charter school, and Columbus public.  Since our school’s attitude is that if Columbus is open, we are open, I made my way through the snow to school.

And went to school to “teach” (really babysit) 40 students.  Honestly, it was quite ridiculous.  Students had to walk to school in the snow, attempt to get a ride from their parents, or wait in the freezing cold weather for the bus.  Now, typically we will have 120-130 students, so it was dramatically less crowded than normal, and less chaotic.  Yes, I did get a lot of work done, but I would have prefered sitting at home on the couch with the puppy all day.

Maybe tomorrow… a girl can dream.

Posted by: theinnerworld | January 28, 2010

One. One……. One……….

This afternoon in my reading class, I was having the students read the book “The Contender” out loud.  Its a great book, filled with racial issues and finding strength to rise about the life they have now.  One of my students, who struggled in the past and has been greatly improving, was asked to read.  He started out great, but was taking long pauses (5-10 seconds) after every comma or period.  So, I very nicely say, “Great job R, but try not to take as long of a pause.  Perhaps only one second”.  So he begins to read.  And after every comma and period, instead of a ten second pause, he says “One”.

It was the longest 3 minutes of my life as I kept trying and trying to keep my smile hidden behind my book and just kept on going in class.

Another event that happened in that class dramatically caught me off guard.  We were reading a section where the main character (who is a black teen living in Harlem in the early 1960s) was stopped by the white police and questioned what he was doing.  We began having a discussion about this, and as I attempted to tie in the racial issues going on, one student called out “They still do that to blacks”.  And I stopped.  I forget sometimes that I’m not in my own little white world, that my students on a daily basis deal with racism and discrimination and judgmental opinions simply because of their skin color.  Simply because they live in the ghetto. Simply because they are from Somalia or from a broken home or live in foster care because their parents are drug addicts.

And then my heart broke a little.

From this class I moved onto another class, where I almost cried.  But not because I was angry or because the  students were mean to me.  But, because I was honest with them.  We were talking about their behavior and how they need to at times be careful about what they say.  They couldn’t really understand, so I told them a story of a time when someone around me said something that truely hurt me, even though they didn’t realize it.  I was at my sorority house watching Greys and it was the episode where George’s father dies, which conviently is on TV right now.  We were talking about death and one of the girls in my house said that dying from a heart attack is a pathetic way to die.  And I just sat there.  And stared.  And then left the room and left the house because I couldn’t hold in my tears.  She never realized that my father had died of a heart attack and it was not a pathetic way to die.  My father was an incredible man who died with his hands raising up towards heaven (trust me, that is not suppose to happen).  I told my students that story and they all just kind of looked at my for a minute.  I know there is things that you are suppose to keep as a teacher from your students, but I really felt that I needed to let them see how their actions, however innocent could really affect someone else.  And I think it might of worked.  I saw students being more cautious with the way they spoke to other people so I hope, hope beyond hope, that my students really listened today.  And maybe tomorrow will be different.

Posted by: theinnerworld | January 27, 2010

Refocusing and regrouping…

The past two days I have been trying to do two things: refocus and regroup.  I feel as though the past month I have been so busy running around for Christmas, end of the 2nd quarter, and adjusting to a three new classes that I haven’t had time to stop and just think.  To just relax.  To just sit and figure out what the heck I am doing and need to do at this point in my life.  I was able last night to just come home, eat dinner, get a little bit of grading done and then just think.  Think about how I need to start approaching my classes, treat my students, and my work attitude.  It is very difficult some days to remain positive at work, something that I have been struggling with.  But luckily, I was able to just sit and breath last night.

I was able to also think a little more about this upcoming year.  I love my teaching job right now.  Yes, there are some ups and downs, and at times I wonder what the heck my principal could be thinking.  BUT, I love my students.  As out of control crazy they can be, I love seeing the HUGE progress they can make in a single week- such as not turning in a single assignment all quarter and then suddenly turning in the first two assignments for a new quarter.  To see a student who had been suspended for half of the year come to school prepared and ready to learn.  Its these advancements that just make my heart melt and me love my job.  So, I am at a place of dilemma, and I making my pros-cons list in my head with decided what step to take next year.  To I just say, well, I’m going to go teach at a better school because it will be easier?  Or do I stay with the challenges I have now, growing as a person and a teacher each day?

For now, I don’t know.  But hopefully I’ll be able to figure it out soon.

Posted by: theinnerworld | January 13, 2010

Ms. S 1, Students 0

I made 25 students sit in silence for 50 minutes, completing the work they were suppose to have done yesterday, but didn’t do and didn’t have ready for today.

In the words of Stewie, “Victory is mine!”

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