Se acabo

It’s early afternoon on a weekday and I’m home. I’m done. No more lessons, no more books, no more students’ dirty looks.

Yesterday, when the kids left, it felt like any other day. I don’t think it’s started to sink in that when they come back next year, they won’t be in my class anymore. I don’t know though, I mean, maybe I got myself used to the idea that they wouldn’t be my kiddos forever. I think maybe if I had one class of kids all day, I would have bawled my eyes out. But they didn’t cry and I didn’t cry. Some of them got hugs and I signed everyone’s paper, notebook, or yearbook. I tried to make it personal to each one. I guess I’ve accepted as territory that comes with the job.

I’m really looking forward to next year. I’ve learned so much from the kids I had this year, and I know that next year, I’m going to have a much better start.

I’m excited that I’ll have more time to blog and stuff. This morning on my way to school, I felt so relaxed. I mean, I have some things that I’m worry about right now, but it’s nice to not have to think about work for a while.


The Guys and I

Since the sixth graders got the highest test scores out of all the grades, they were rewarded by a swimming trip to the nearby YMCA. But because of hormones and lawsuits, girls and boys go on different days. The way it turned out, I got put on the chaperone list for the boys. So today and tomorrow, I will spend the day with the boys in my homeroom and my buddy teacher’s homeroom class.

Because half the teachers would be gone, we would have to remain in homeroom until sixth period (which today was at 11:15 AM). To pass the time, I showed them the end of Selena.

It turned out quite nice because after the movie, we did end up having a short discussion. Most of them had seen the movie already and helped answer questions for those who had. We talked a little about Saldívar and what would happen to her if she came out of jail. It was a quite fruitful discussion.

Tomorrow should be a lot of fun for them. It’ll be cool to see them enjoying themselves. After all, they definitely earned it.


The Adventures of Ms. Baeza & Goat

School is over on Wednesday for the kids and Thursday for me. I’m excited but I hate having to pack all my junk because summer school will be held in our building. I’ve received so many thoughtful cards and drawings from my students. It’s quite an accomplishment for me to see how much they have learned. I think my first year out of college hasn’t been in vain and I’ve done pretty well.

We’re spending the last couple days watching Selena. The kids seem to really be enjoying it. I wish I had more time to discuss it with them. She was so much like them. I’m sure that they get that and I would love to hear what they have to say.

The Adventures of Goat

My entire life I have been surrounded by books. I had tons of them when I was a kid. My oldest sister started the collection and everyone else continued it. Some of my favorites were My Little Golden Books. The other day, I was browsing in an antique shop, when out of the corner of my eye; I caught the glimmer of the spine of a Little Golden Book. I immediately walked over to the bookshelf and rummaged through them. They had a copy of the very edition of Goldilocks and the Three Bears that I had.

One of my fondest memories is of my mom reading to me. My mom worked a lot while I was growing up, so when I was a kid, having alone time with my mom was sort of a luxury. One of my favorite things for her to do with me was read to me. All of my books were in English, and even though my mom couldn’t read it, she managed to tell me a story. If she didn’t know the story, she used the pictures to guide her.

One of the stories that she did not know was The Adventures of Goat. According to her, it was about a goat that leaves the farm because he is artist and one of his portraits is entered into a contest. What I remember the most is when the goat is boarding the bus and turns to his farm buddies and says, “Pero voy a volver!”

I used to laugh so much at that for some reason. I don’t know if it was the slurred deep voice that she said it in or the way she hung her hand attempting to imitate a hoof and waved goodbye to me. In any case, I’ve spent much time looking for this book. I never knew the title of the book until I put my Google skills to good use.

Thus far, I think I’ve found the right book. I’ve tried to locate a picture of it, but it doesn’t really look like the one I had. Of course, editions change over the years. I guess the only way to really find out is to order it.


A Year Ago...

Yesterday, I graduated.

That is all.



Okay, so TAKS scores are in, and although I hate the idea of teaching to the test, I'm really happy that out of my 61 students, 58 passed. For a brand new teacher, I think that's pretty good.
But that's not the only thing that's got me smiling from ear to ear. This morning I recieved the following e-mail:
We talked about you in 1st/2nd period. And J, M, and G spoke highly of you!

You are cool and you have a genuine attitude towards classwork.
They enjoy joking and working at the same time.

That is an awesome compliment! I do not think German is even in your class???

Hope this adds a little sunshine to your day!
On top of that, I made it to the Orchestra concert earlier this evening and this one kiddo I'd been having some trouble with said, "Miss, you remember our concert!"
Then she turned to another kid and said, "She even wrote it on her calander. Now that's a teacher."
It's hard to believe that nine months ago, I didn't even want to go into work. I had knots in my stomach every morning thinking about work. Lunch was some crappy snack food or crackers because I couldn't stomach a real meal.


An Introvert Reflects

I didn’t realize how long I’ve been gone. I feel like a distant observer in Blogatitlan. I read so many people’s journals but hardly ever leave comments. Maybe it’s because I say so much every day, I feel like I’m being redundant.

I have a bit more introverted than usual the last couple of weeks. I’ve been reflecting on mostly work. It’s almost the end of the year, I’m excited and then I’m sad. This morning, as I lay in bed soothing the pain in my heel, I thought about the beginning of the school year. I was so nervous that I couldn’t eat. I was shaky and kept thinking, “This is really it.”

Then I thought about next year, and I got really excited. I know I won’t be as nervous and I’ll have a much better plan. I wasn’t one of those people that kept a written running list of all the things I did wrong. Instead, I made mental notes. When I think back, I remember the exact moment and cause of my wrong doing.

Next year, I’ll introduce myself to all of them before they walk into my class. Instead of the word puzzle packets, we’ll do some kind of ice breaker activity after all that paper work. And, I’ll be able to attend Tiger Camp, the sixth grade informational meeting for the kids. It’ll also be cool because I’m sure I’ll have a couple of kids from this year go by to say hello or bug me.

At the same time, I’m saddened that I won’t have some of the same kids. Yesterday, during a meeting, a fellow teacher asked, “Do you joke around with all your classes? Don’t you find that you can’t do that with all of them?”

“No,” I said.

And really, I do joke with all of them. I may have a little turd here or there, but I’m not going to let them stop the other kids from having a good time. I have some very depressed kids with really crappy home situations and they need to laugh somewhere.

In other news, my nephew is well. Thanks to all of you for your concern. He’s back at school and the kids that beat him up were sent to an alternative school. His mother has been taking and picking him up from school like she should have been doing a long time ago.

Lastly, I’ve kept up the gym thing. I gained a lot of weight this year and with the help of many people, I’ve been able to keep up the gym thing. Yesterday, I played racquetball twice. Once with the people from work and the other with Dan the Man. It’s quite fun because I’m so bad at it that I run around like a crazy person. I did a kickboxing class the other day, too. That was like hell, but it was great.

When I’m doing my cardio, I see all sorts of people pass by; and of course, because I’m so nosey/observant, I examine everyone. I mostly like to read t-shirts. But some of the people really inspire me. But I find that the guys inspire me the most. In particular, the ones that work out on the weight machines and make it look so damn simple. That’s what’s made me try some of those hellish machines that leave me weak in the arms/legs/abs and make me feel like I’m the biggest bad ass ever.

Well, I’m off. I have to change the songs on my MP3 player, and head out to the gym. Later, I’m going to the eye doctor and the Latino Book Festival.