Sunday, August 17, 2008

Man hunting - blog rerun Sept 2007

It seems to me that most of the people who read my blog have a very loose association with public school. What I mean is, everyone went to school somewhere, usually public, but only of few of you are teachers. I only mention this to make you aware of something that you may not have realized.
Not everything that teachers are asked to do is entirely related to the education of their students. I know - you seem very shocked!! Those of you who are about to die of "not surprise" are probably thinking about all the things that you are required to do at your job that have NOTHING to do with the job description you were given upon being hired.
As many of you know, I have LOTS of hobbies!! On the occasions when I allow myself to cave into their temptation, I pursue them with the same single minded obsession as a dog with a bone. It's all I do - sleeping and eating, and sometimes grooming become optional as I tackle a particular pursuit with hyper-focused intensity. About 5 years ago, my hobby of choice was scrap booking. In a VERY short amount of time I cranked out 4 REALLY huge scrapbooks. Now - I just look at a piece of scrap booking paper or a photograph and I sort of go into dry heaves. For several years I have barely been able to force myself to take pictures of any kind for fear that I'll create a need for another scrapbook. There have been a few very small exceptions, one of which was my best friends 30th birthday party in which I THREW together a scrapbook that due to circumstances beyond my control ended up being a collection of pictures of just her. Other than that sad sad little book I haven't touched that particular hobby with a ten foot pole in about 3 years.
We have finally arrived at my first school story.....
As part of our beginning of the year "celebration" the teachers and staff at my school were given the task of making "About Me" posters. We had to think ahead and bring pictures from home that represented our lives and interests. I had to go to Walgreens the night before at about 11:00 p.m. to get mine developed. The photo shop guy was really happy with me too! As I was waiting to get my warm and curly pictures off of the machine, I realized that the whole idea of making an "About Me" poster reeked suspiciously of scrap booking.
Except......... we had to scrapbook on half a piece of poster board in a gigantimo room with everybody else on staff. On the floor in one section of the room were all of the "mommas" who scrapbook for a living because they have babies. (I think there is now a chapter on professional grade scrap booking in the latest Dr. Spock parenting book). There was also a section of conscientious objectors who were overwhelmed by their need for perfection and decided to take it home for homework where they could get out the ruler and protractor and do it right. My section of the room was the "Hurry Up and get'erdone" section. You never saw scissors and paper and glue fly so fast. Lots of people in my section had no clue what to do, but we had fun!!
We had to share our posters with our neighbors and tell about ourselves. (Only in an elementary school) Soon they will all be hung in the library so the kids can see them. OK- it is kind of a cool project. After all of my hesitation I ended up liking mine. So, I decided that I would use it during my lessons this week.
These "About Me" posters have been kind of a nice way to explain to the kids that Mr. Music and I don't live at school, we aren't married, we certainly don't live together, AND we don't have children hiding under our desks. Any combination of the preceding statements are generally accepted as truth by the student population at my school. Because of these spiffy "About Me" posters, we get to show our students what we DO have. We both have WONDERFUL families! They've really enjoyed it and although I didn't want to make no stinking poster, it has been useful. It's good to know that some silly things are wothwhile.
Today in First grade, after playing an energetic round of "Will You Follow Me in a Line" we settled down to talk about my poster. They loved the pictures of my parents, grandparents and then told me about theirs. They giggled over the pictures of me and my cousins and brother and then shared stories about theirs. Then they puzzled and thought and frowned and fretted about the pictures my friends including but not limited to Mr. Music and all the "girls" that I run around with. Suddenly, Brittney (name changed) scrunched up her face and asked, "Ms. Bonnie, Ain't you got a man?".
At which time Christian (name changed) restated the quesiton in case the meaning had missed me, "You mean, you don't have a husband?"
My answer was, "No, but I do have a family, and my family is pretty big because my friends are family too"
Then Brittney, after a little more thoght asked "Ms. Bonnie, how do you find a man?"
I wanted to tell her to ask someone who had one, and then come back and fill me in.
Instead, I said, "I guess you've just got to keep your eyes open until you find the nicest one"

You know - I believe it!