January 31, 2014

Things That Made Me Laugh This Week

We started off the week with 2 "snow" days, making our total 4 for this year so far. I'm hoping to keep the No-Mondays streak alive with the new storms headed our way this weekend. My fingers are crossed! I seriously don't know how I'll go back to a 5-day week after all these long weekends. I'm dreading it!

The good news, though, is that weeks like this are a good reminder of how much I love my job. I work with the sweetest students and kindest coworkers. Here are 5 little tidbits from my (short) week to give you an idea why I'm always laughing!

1. H is an 8th grader this year. She has Down's Syndrome and packs a personality like no child I've ever encountered. I only ever see her in the hallways, but she's always being sassy and bossing people around. I can't not laugh at her! This week, I was redirecting some noisy 8th graders in the hallway as she walked past me. We exchanged greetings, and then she carefully reached out her hand toward my head. I thought she was trying to get something out of my hair, but instead, she rested her hand gently on my face and said earnestly, "You are SUCH a good girl!" LMAO!

2. Students in my district study a different word part each week. We do all sorts of activities using the word parts to keep it interesting. This week's word part was -arch. One of our activities was to unscramble a sentence to read as follows: Since my grandfather's death, my Uncle Jake, who is my dad's older brother, is the patriarch of the family.

In the 10 minutes we worked on this sentence (this is incredibly hard for our ESL kiddos), you would not believe the number of students who tried to write, "My grandfather, who is also my Uncle Jake..." Um... no! That's NOT how things work here!

3. To amp up some excitement around our annual school musical, students are given clues every day on the announcements for two weeks. Of course, students love to throw out their predictions each time they get a new clue. This has been an eye-opening experience for me because I am simply shocked at how little our kids know about classic Disney movies (one of the clues). Two boys in my first period were convinced that the musical would be Aladdin and proceeded to explain how, "The red guy and the blue guy come out of the can and there's fighting." I only heard part of their retelling but was convinced they were talking about Power Rangers. Haha! (FYI: The musical selection is Beauty and the Beast).

4.Yesterday, J (the girl I work with for the majority of the day) had a melt down during her strategic reading class. I was notified by another student when I asked why she hadn't come to health. Of course, I left right away to see if I could help and found her in the hallway, surrounded by another TA, our facilitator, and one of the assistant principals. Her head was on her desk, eyes were closed, she refused to respond to any prompts, and her hands were clamped tightly around the bars on her desk so she couldn't be moved. She had completely shut down.

I tried a few of our go-to techniques, but it was pretty clear that she was too far gone to just snap out of her tantrum. Our facilitator thought it would be best for everyone to leave except me (because she's most comfortable with me since we're together most of the day). Within 10 minutes, I had her up and walking to her locker. By the time I made it (late) to lunch, I walked in, looked at the other TA on my team, and announced, "I am a miracle-worker. I deserve a raise!" And then I noticed that my principal was sitting right there with her back to me. OOPS! Good thing she laughed!

5. In Design & Modeling today, students watched videos on PBS videos about the design process. The boy next to me, P, has autism and is pretty young both academically and developmentally. The video he chose to watch was about a group designing new prosthetic legs for an amputee who wanted to swim better. His takeaway from the video: "I can't wait until it's summer so I can go swimming again!" Yeah.. me too, Buddy!

I hope your week was filled with as much laughter as mine. TGIF!


  1. Your days certainly sound action packed! I'm always amazed at how much goes on in one school day. Great job connecting with your student who had shut down! That's awesome!
    Short and Sassy Teacher

  2. You had me smiling with each and every post! I'm so glad that you had such a laugh-filled week. We were only in school for two days, but my kiddos had me in stitches. I had forgotten how much fun kids this age can be!