BulgingButtons

Not bad for a fat girl


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I’m Going to the Show!

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Well, not really a show. A conference. Two of them actually, back to back.

I’m going to St. Louis to the National Writing Project Conference, followed by the National Council of Teachers of English Conference. NWP and NCTE, for short.

Am I excited? You bet!

Am I nervous? Ditto!

You see, I’m supposed to present a round table discussion at NWP. I’ve never done this before. Not successfully, anyway. I’ve never even been to a big conference before. I have done a breakout session at our state conference, but only one person wandered in. By mistake. She thought I was someone else. To my shame, I didn’t graciously let her go. I forged ahead with my presentation anyway, no doubt wasting her time. You see, I was an elementary level presenter at a conference full of high school educators. Maybe not the best fit.5124Osj9s0L.jpg

At NWP however, my topic extends into middle school, and there’s a much larger audience. Maybe more than one person will stray my way. Maybe even some people who are actually interested in my topic. It could happen.

The flip side is that I’ll get the chance to be a starry-eyed kid for the rest of the time, tracking down some of my literacy idols and gathering up pearls of knowledge. I’m especially geeked to hear from Jacqueline Woodson and Rick Riordan, both authors that my students and I adore.

I’m excited for November to come rolling around so I can finally get to St. Louis.

 


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Hiding From the Sun

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So today is the big eclipse. I remember the last one, sort of. I remember my father frightening me about going blind, then creating a pin-hole viewer of some sort. Do I remember what I actually saw? No.

I thought maybe this time around it would make more of a lasting impression. My older colleagues and I all recalled the hoopla surrounding the eclipse of our childhood, and we wanted our students to participate in this scientific phenomenon. We put out the call for cereal boxes so we could make our own viewers. Then we got the edict. No eclipse viewing.

Well, I was hardly surprised. After all, we have many kids who can’t (or won’t) follow a direction as simple as pick up your pencil, so why would they follow the direction of “don’t look at this remarkable thing that you’ve never seen before and will never see again?” Cardboard boxes and dark glasses are no match for the curiosity of a kid. They might peek around those pinhole viewers and slide off those shades to get a better look, in spite of warnings of the potential danger. I might even be tempted to do those things, and I know better.

So today we’ll stay indoors for most of the day. Recess will be pushed back, PE classes will stay indoors (where they’ve been due to the heat anyway) and the entire lunch schedule will be adjusted, since our cafeteria is only accessible by going outdoors. We’ll still learn about the eclipse, and thanks to modern technology we’ll get to view it, just not in person.

If you get a chance to see if for yourself, be safe, and don’t let those funky glasses slip.

 


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Back to the Dorm

Year two of college is starting for my kid, and today is his move-in day. Some observations about this event:

  1. I know what to expect this year, so I have far fewer nerves (yes, it’s all about me!).
  2. He knows what to expect, so he packed less stuff (not that he had much last year).
  3. His father and I are taking him together, just like last year, in spite of being divorced for many years. I believe this is a good thing for all of us. He’s still our son and we’re still his parents. This transition, even if it isn’t the first time, is still kind of a big deal, and experiencing it all together validates that fact.
  4. I’m hopeful that I’ll handle year two of him being away better than year one. Year one found me a bit down in the dumps, teetering on the edge of depression. I don’t want to go back there. Yes, I know he’s close by, and yes, he’s been great about staying in touch (weekly dinners and everything) but something about him being out of the house just unsettled me. I’m hopeful that I react better this time around.
  5. I’m excited for him. He’s got this. He’s ready to go back and he’s ready for classes to begin and he’s ready to be more independent again. I’m happy for him.

The building he’s moving into is brand new. It’s built to house 1,600 students. Wow. I’m looking forward to seeing it in person, so far I’ve only gotten a sneak peek from the local news station. The kitchens on the floors are nicer than the one in my house, but I don’t see him using it much. There’s a fitness center in the building and 3-d printers and all sorts of other amenities. It’s a far cry from Gilbert 105, my first cinderblock-walled dorm room. Still, that old building was a wonderful place to make memories; I hope his new home is too.

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