Monday, September 27, 2010

Sometimes, Kids Tell the Truth

Have you ever heard a kid honestly give the age-old excuse that his or her dog ate his or her homework?

Many times.

Have you ever known a student who brought in proof that his or her dog ate his or her homework?

This was a first for me.

Happy Monday!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Just What I Needed

After a long week that included two nights of parent-teacher-student conferences, this is exactly what I needed:

Thursday, September 23, 2010

An Old Wives Tale

After parent-teacher-student conferences on Thursday, my co-workers and I decided to go to dinner at Lazlo's.  Our lunch is at 10:45, so by the time we left conferences, we were quite hungry.

After dinner, the conversation somehow shifted toward some strange approach to determining the quantity and gender of future children that is some kind of old wives tale.

Steph was the one who shared it with us, and she swears that it has proven to be true for all the women in her family.

Here's how it (supposedly) works:

1.  Put a ring or needle around some sort of string or chain.  In this case, we used Amber's wedding ring around the chain of one of her necklaces.

2.  Figure out a system to suspend the chain and ring above your hand.  One way to achieve this is to hang the chain from a fork, which sits across the top of a glass:

3.  Watch intently as the ring moves.  If it moves back and forth, it means you'll be having a girl.  If it moves around in circles, it means a boy is in your future.

4.  Note that after moving for a while, the ring will stop.  If and when it starts back up again, it means that you are meant to have more than one child.

6.  Note:  It might take a while to get going or to "pick up your vibes."  Do not panic yet.

7.  Smile once the ring does move, knowing that children are, in fact, in your future.

8.  When the ring stops for good, it means that you are meant to have only the amount of children that was previously indicated by the swinging motion of the ring.

9.  When you have finished, make your husband try to see if he gets the same outcome.  You really hope that the outcome is the same for both of you.

10.  Make sure to take time to laugh at the fact that you actually spent thirty minutes of your life exploring this old wives tale.

For the record, I am not buying it.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Kids These Days

I had to miss two days of school this week in order to attend a training on part of our 6th grade Health curriculum.

I hate being gone, mostly because I worry about what is and what is not happening in my classroom.  I had a great sub this week, so I wasn't worried about things getting done.  I was worried, however, about how well (or not well) my kids were behaving.

Last year, I got in the habit of bringing my classes a reward of some type if I had a good sub note when I returned.  They really bought into that positive reinforcement.

So, I offered the same this year.

When I returned to school on Thursday, I told them that they did get two positive notes from the substitute and that I would be bringing donuts on Friday.  I also told them that if they wanted, they could bring a drink to class to enjoy with their donuts.

I did the same thing for my students last year, so I didn't think much of it.

Last year, my students brought drinks like these:

Apparently, the trends have changed.

When I walked into my classroom on Friday morning, there were a few students with juice, Gatorade, and soda, but the overwhelming majority had brought drinks like these:

Kids these days...

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

DMB for Free!

As I mentioned last Friday, I won from KFRX, a local radio station, free tickets to go see Dave Matthews Band.

When I asked around the plan center at school on Friday morning, it sounded to me like my co-workers were pretty apathetic about Dave Matthews Band.

Except for Taylor.

So, I invited her to go with me.

Tuesday, the day of the concert, was kind of hecic for both of us.  I had to be out of school for the day to attend a training as part of the health class I will be teaching at the end of the year.  Taylor coaches volleyball and got out of practice an hour after its scheduled end time.

So, we left school later than originally planned and didn't have enough time to go to dinner.  So, we drove through McDonalds and ate in the car on our way to the Qwest.

Classy, right?

When we got to the Qwest, there was a booth right outside of our section labeled "Section 208 Reassignments."  As it turned out, they put up some curtain that would've obstructed our view of the concert, so we got moved, which turned out to be a good thing because we got to move a little bit closer to the stage.

Again, my camera is not high-quality.  It is events like this that continually remind me of that fact.  I'm thinking that maybe I will buy myself a new one for Christmas.

Anyway, here are some shots from the concert.  Trust me, these pictures do not do justice to the quality of that show!

The Qwest stayed empty for a long time.  I was beginning to feel bad for Dave and his band, thinking that nobody would show up.  By the time he came on, however, the place was packed.

Shortly after the show began, we became a bit distracted by a lady who thought that dancing in the aisle was a good idea.  Our whole section got a good laugh out of her.

Once she finally moved to the top row of the aisle, it was easier to focus on what we came to see:

The show was AMAZING!  They are stellar live performers, and I especially enjoyed the improvisation between songs.  They are such a talented group of musicians, and Taylor and I both said how much we enjoy seeing how much passion comes through when they play their music.

The encore performance was the best I've ever seen.  They played several songs and concluded with "Two Step," which is one of my favorites.  It ended up being a 15-minute song with all of the improvisation that they did.  It was absolutely breathtaking.

We got back into town at about 12:15.  Although I ended up staying at school until after 2:00 a.m. to get my sub plans ready for the next day, it was totally worth the experience we had.

"Celebrate we will
Because life is short but sweet for certain
We're climbing two by two
To be sure these days continue"
-Dave Matthews Band

Saturday, September 11, 2010

My Other Favorite Football Team

I was probably one of the very few Nebraskans who didn't wear red today.

I wore blue.  Actually, gray with blue writing.

As much as it pains me to not wear red in support of my alma mater, I am proud to put on my blue and gray to support my brother, who plays football for Peru State College.  Today, my parents and I went to watch him play.

Brother is #72.

He is listed on the roster as being 6'2" and 310 pounds.  He's an offensive lineman.  More specifically, he's a right tackle.

The movie The Blind Side explains the significance of the role of the left tackle - the team's best pass blocker.  The left tackle is credited for protecting the quarterback's blind side as he throws the ball.

The right tackle (which is what Brother is) is usually the team's best run blocker.

Most running plays are towards the strong side (the side with the tight end) of the offensive line. Consequently, the right tackle will face the defending team's best run stoppers.

He must be able to gain traction in his blocks so that the running back can find a hole through which to run.

I am happy to report that Brother blocked very well today.

I very much enjoyed the time that I got to spend with my family...

Unfortunately, the Bobcats did not win today.  But I always appreciate the good sportsmanship that is displayed during and after a defeat.  Brother has always been really good at sportsmanship.  I love watching how encouraging he is to his teammates on the sidelines and on the field.

After the game, we learned that Brother sustained a bit of an injury.

He took a helmet to the forearm, which caused him to lose his ability to grip and squeeze for a while, but he claimed that it was starting to feel better.  The trainers wrapped it with ice to reduce the swelling of a lump that had appeared.

Despite the loss, Brother agreed to take some pictures with his fan club...

I love you, Brother.  And I love watching you play the game that you love so much.

Go Bobcats!