Saturday, August 13, 2011

what's cooking in thar ? ....

rain rain rain..

really glad to see all the rain this last week. had a great second week of school. some news at work this week is the principal is trying to reduce the ESL program because he needs our classrooms, so we were all talking about becoming paraprofessionals... what that means is a teacher who just sits in class with esl students and explains stuff and sometimes that becomes a person who translates and gives answers more or less. really awful. anyway, we'll see what happens with all that, they would have to keep the newcomer program, but they are saying the math part (which is me) would involve putting them into regular math classes with me explaining everything to the newcomers.. basically I may lose my room. I don't see it really happening, and to be honest I'll do whatever I still get paid, so no harm done really. although I feel personally that it's not the best way to do an esl program at all. ha
also I heard from a friend in Admin last week that there might be another opening for someone to be the "Newcomer" coordinator for the district which means helping place students and also conferring with parents etc.. If the position comes up I'm definitely going to apply, and my contact already told me she thought I'd do a good job and they could use more males in the dept over there. ha What I hope DOESN'T happen is they hire someone based only on their SPanish fluency. Ya ever feel like white America will eventually have a harder time finding work because people will hire all the Mexican immigrant kids who speak both ENglish and Spanish? that's probably only locally based situations, but more and more bank tellers, fast food, store clerks, have a better chance with 2 languages. I always wonder about that when ESL jobs come up... especially when they seek someone BILINGUAL. and what they really mean is someone who speaks Spanish in order to deal with all the immigrant students and families.
I can't tell you enough how important the ESL program is to the success of students in a school that is over 78% latino. I also want to say how sad it is when you see your kids in class with no health care, I have already seen 2 boys this year with injuries to the hand that are just left to heal up when normally they would have possibly gone somewhere for stitches, cleaned up, bandaged etc...I always wish I could take them somewhere or sometimes I ask don't you want to see if the nurse can help. and they say no no it's fine... that's what makes me sick about people who hire illegal immigrants as cheap labor, I've had friends from Mexico in my night classes who once are injured they lose the job, or this one guy's cousin who fell while welding and hurt his back so much he could no longer even do work to win money for the family anyway, that's a bad situation.
LAST NIGHT... I went out to eat at pepperoni Grill at the mall in okc with my bud S. we walked around the mall a bit and I got some "denim washed" khaki pants at the gap. and then instead of seeing a movie we decided to drive over and check out the new outlet mall that opened up last weekend over on I40 and COuncil. we were people watching more than shopping, although we did find some great lower prices at the banana republic and nike stores. I only bought one thing though, an $11 belt from the gap. also ran into a few different former students which was fun. I'm off work all weekend from the water park! yippee and after the rain the last few nights I'm ready to get outside and work in the yard some today, also clean up the house, it's a pit with clean and dirty clothes here and there, a path between shoes and grocery sacks on the floor, junk mail piled up on the table here in front of me among wristwatches, sunglasses, empty styrofoam cups, and various electronic music or camera devices and their cords etc...tonight I plan to see a movie downtown at the art museum. real nice lazy perfect day today.. good weekend to all!

Friday, August 12, 2011

peachy keen...

ya think from 1:07 to 1:19 has anything to do with peaches....mmmm mmmmm good...
here's another...

eeny meeny miney moe...

Chris Klein shtick...

i think he's still hot even with the receding hair... oh chris klein!!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

high of 95 tomorrow. good news!

probably going to delay the fall break trip for now.. .I WILL be NYC on Fall break but I'm going to remain stateside. thing is I will have a LOT more fun shopping and spending money on my sisters in Dec during the NYC trip if I don't blow a bunch of cash in October... plus I'm already planning a 4 day weekend to Austin in September for Austin City Limits. Anyone gonna be there? let me know. I began to reconsider the trip once I realized I'm teaching my Monday night college class throughout fall break and I don't like missing one of those classes or doing one of those online discussion board deals etc etc...Especially since I am already one week's worth of classes behind since we'll miss the monday night class of labor day! ugh!!! alas.
lots of rain this week which makes me very happy, also I've been swimming every morning this week at 530 before breakfast at the gym down the street so I'm 3 for 3..and plan to keep it up the next two morning, Saturday morning? probably not. the Austin trip has me motivated to make it like my own personal boot camp this next month, swimming and getting the work out routine started back up etc..
I'm booking my December trip hotel tonight. THANKS AGAIN GREGG, I'll hit you up for some more ideas in the coming months. Anyone ever stay at Hotel PEnnsylvania ($282 a night) or Best Western times square ($344 a night) ? it seems like a nice enough location..penn station or 5th and 32nd... otherwise I'm going to go ahead and book St James($320 a night). My budget is around 300 or little more a night etc blah blah blah. yeah I know I've waited way too long to get the hotel booked, but I am gonna do it this week for realz!
BACK TO SCHOOL news... kids are in my classes, the newcomer classes are awesome kids that really want to learn English and not hardened by the neighborhood so much, yet. also my returning newcomer students from last year are dispersed among my 3 second year classes so that is great already having a relationship developed and able to help them with other subjects etc... the pain in the neck are all the 9th kids new to the highschool and stuck in my second level class who I'm going to have to earn respect and visa versa from. basically that means the kids who like to talk/joke/chatter which I'll have none of while I'm teaching, yup I'm pretty attention hungry and greedy when it comes to all focus on me during the lesson!!! ha
one girl first day today already is testing me out and I'll confer with her tomorrow explaining expectations. ya know dressing gangster style with piercings and tattoos really doesn't help perceptions of a kid. but you figure 9th grade year is when they one to put all that superficial out there the most... as they get to 10th and 11th they either go all in or start being more "normal" whatever that is..... so just a few challenges I face with forms and conferences and following all steps from the get go. The good kids? man just love 'em this year, I got two squirrely 9th grade boys in one class that repeat all the words and ask questions and do their work and get to it and remain in good spirits. also another class a guy and girl newcomer just ready to jump in and learn all they can about English. on the down side, the honduran kid I mentioned before already got 3 days in school suspension for something in his art class, hmmmm. and then there is another newcomer girl from mexico but she's lived in the states 3 years in and out of schools and had a baby at 14... so really she doesn't qualify as newcomer but her English is poor enough we can't just throw her into mainstream classes...It will be interesting to see if she really lasts anyway since already she's a bit chatty in class and not trying the best on her work turned in. well enough about WORK more thing, there are 2 other nice new kids in my 2nd year calss who are alreayd asking for help with their math and asking about their other classes, the teachers, etc... that is good news, because I am really great at being an advocate for the students who really care. I spoke to a friend at Admin, the position I applied for there is year round, but she told me there is possibly another position coming open for a coordinator of newcomers in the district. someone to help with the students AND the parents.. sounded really cool and up my alley. plus she said it'd be nice to have more men in the dept, hey whatever works.. I'm gonna keep my eye out for the posting if the job is created. cheers

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Monday, August 08, 2011

watching birds....

thanks tons to Brian, I think I solved the time it was taking to load the page... let me know if it's any better. :)

Sunday, August 07, 2011

more August MOON....

August moon

a litle bit of rain this morning... woot woot. was nice coming home last night also it had rained while I was working at the water park. only weekends now that school's started. I survived my first week back to classes, although I've only met half my students, we have to test all the new students, and then find the kids that speak no English at all and are true newcomers, and also all the 9th graders, we have to identify their level of English to see if they are in esl class 2,3,4 etc or not in special classes anymore. yup, your tax dollars hard at work. I only bring that up because one of my newcomer kids in my beginning English class was left to die by his traffikers in the desert in AZ. He's from Honduras and was sent for by his dad who lives here to come up to the states. (Consider all the hard-earned American dollars paid by legal/illegal immigrants to the drug cartel involved in human trafficking from Mexico into the US) anyway something went badly and he was left on his own in AZ and ended up turning himself in somewhere so as to get some food and water. Now he's in OKC with his dad and waiting a hearing whatever that means.... wow, It's really weird that my job is basically dependent upon the number of these kids the schools are required to teach English to, and yet I'm completely against the trafficking and hiring of illegal immigrants etc.... strange world.
Can you imagine if they took a count of the number of students in schools without a social security number that showed just how many get the benefit of all our tax dollars. thing is, you'll never see that count taken because it would probably be used to scare up some votes one direction or another for greedy politicians on either side.
boy this post is not starting very upbeat at all. get off that soapbox dan!
where was I, oh yeah, school got off to a great start and I'm getting my room in order and since I teach the level two classes I already know some of my kids that I taught beginning English to last year. that was nice to see who came back. also all the kids who drove me crazy in class 2 last year, are way more friendly in the halls this year since they don't have me for a teacher any more. ahh that's nice saying hello and how are you etc... Did I mention I applied for a job at the admin building for our district in the Bilingual ed dept? I hope to get an interview but it might be one of those openings that they just posted with someone already in mind. but I think it's always good to apply to show you're interested in heading that direction for any future openings. keep my name on their radar and such.
Social Skills people!!! and Intelligence!!! It really is who you know that will help getting or hearing about a job.... but after that it's about what you can DO and KNOW. so get out and network, but not annoying about it of course.
I was getting fed up thinking about places for a vacation stop this fall break, and also I was facing the dilemma of having saved up so much money that I didn't want to spend it now that it's saved! ha... I was thinking I should just stay in the US and not try some big plan., but I got a great idea in church this morning that involves maybe going somewhere and then traveling around by train etc...Does anyone have experience or any hint/tips about trains from place to place in Europe that get you there overnight?? anyway, more on that later.
The summer job has been fun but I'm pretty sure I won't miss it next summer, other than all the wonderful shirtless bodies out there. I hope to get back into a routine of workouts going now that school has begun, I have some motivation of going to Austin for Austin City Limits this year. tickets for Sat and Sun.. SHWEET! hope all are enjoying the weeeknd. cheers