Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Unexpected gifts

Today, I received a grant from a local organization that works with high school journalism students. $500 for my newspaper program, for anything we want, in Fall of 2011. I was stunned. I had no idea there was even such a thing! Evidently, since we have had students in that program every year for at least six years, maybe more, our support of the program was noticed and they wanted to reciprocate! I was completely speechless. It made me feel like I was doing something RIGHT.

Sorry to bore anyone with my job, as I'm sure everyone gets tired of hearing about it. But, what else am I supposed to blog about? My ability to run has only been replaced with my ability to eat, it seems, and I'm definitely sure no one wants to hear about that. I don't want a food blog, anyway. Tried it. It didn't take. I think there are 11 posts on there! But, when my job takes up as many hours as it does, it tends to be a large focus in my life. Besides, hearing about the growth of my columbines I'm sure won't exactly put anyone in a tizzy, either. At least, not in any way I can think of!

Last night, I witnessed the most awful vocal music concert ever. It made me reflect upon my time in middle school choir, and I was appalled. Screaming middle schoolers, people trashing the venue, kids jumping on and off risers, talking while kids were performing, and worst of all...bad music choices for changing voices. (That rhymed. Heh) Who expects teenage boys, in all their Brady Bunch-esque voice-changing glory, to sing Let it Be well? A favorite of mine was unnervingly butchered before my very ears. I had to literally bite my tongue to keep from laughing as there were parents all around me, recording this atrocity. I spoke with my principal, as this school was using our school as their venue, and she was shocked. She was there, but working, and didn't sit in on the concert. However, she did find the bathrooms trashed. She thanked me for letting her know that at least for our students in the vocal music program, they received no discipline in middle school, thus leading to a sub-par vocal music program at my school. I feel for the director, I really do. I had no idea.

And now, a heartwarming moment: Why I love my students. This morning, right before the start of class, I looked at my few kids (state testing has rendered me with a crippled band every morning) and asked them if they would be so kind as to pick up the trash (a kid pointed and said, "Yeah, I can see it everywhere!") and make the auditorium presentable, so the custodian wouldn't have to spend an hour doing it.

In three minutes, the auditorium was spotless, and every single seat was even placed back in the up position (ours are old; once you pull them down, they stay that way unless you put them back up). I was amazed, and grateful. Not a single one of them complained. They simply asked to go wash their hands.

So, for haters who don't want to read about my job, or who seem to think that I am not qualified or good at my job, that's fine. But you know what? I think that sometimes people need to be reminded that teenagers, despite their hormonal surges of rage/fear/anxiety/depression/other crazy emotions, are kind-hearted and simply in need of good guidance and love. Haters can hate. My students, instead, will love.

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