Friday, April 11, 2003

Random question: Is it possible that This End Up furniture existed only to furnish public school teachers’ lounges?

Ways Substitute Teaching is Like Temping:
You get lost going to strange parts of the suburbs.

Sometimes, the work is more than you can handle: too many phone lines; too many classes and a note that says “I don’t get lunch on Thursdays.”

Sometimes, there’s too little work: “Oh, we thought copying and assembling these training manuals would take two days; you can, um, help Ms. Smith file. Or, “You just need to act as scribe for this student.” And the four hours at mid-day he has keyboarding, lunch, and gym.

You never know what each day will bring.

You get to eat lunch with people you'd never have over to dinner.

Because Roy did not need my help, I spent time in the school library. The assistant librarian was on duty by herself. She accepted my offer to shelve some books. Middle school libraries cover a wide range of reading levels: R. L. Stein to Steinbeck. I also enjoyed the strange bedfellows in Biography: Elvis – Charley Pride – Colin Powell, for example. The recent renovation to the 1951 school won the library a soaring ceiling (and two mezzanine meeting rooms), smart blond bookshelves and carrels, some of the latter fitted with candy-colored Apple computers.

At the end of the day, I supervised two boys finishing posters on the U.S. Cabinet. They researched the cabinet members on the internet with their iBooks, then wrote captions and printed out pictures to glue stick to the posterboard. They seemed mildly interested in the fact that Secretary of Labor Elaine L. Chao went to the same college that I did, until they realized they’d never heard of it. (Bonus trivia: the first woman cabinet member, Frances Perkins, MHC 1902, served as Secretary of Labor during whose administration?)

Speaking of Mount Holyoke, Su forwarded this link to me: - Restricting Women's Military Role Hurts All (Newsday is the daily paper for Long Island.)

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