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Friday - October 3, 1997

When I was a student in high school, I used to love to get out of class for pep assemblies, fire drills, presentations... anything! Now that I'm on the other side of the fence, though, I have mixed feelings about it. On one hand, it's nice to get a little time out of the spotlight. But it sure screws up any schedule you might have. Today was a good example of that.
    It started 2nd hour. I was just about to give the kids a quiz when the fire alarm goes off. I guess I wasn't too surprised.. after all, it was a beautiful day out and the school needs to get an incredible number of fire drill in per year. But I wasn't planning on this interruption at all. It took all of 10 minutes, but that was enough to totally screw up my plan. I figured that the quiz would take up most of the hour, but I thought I had 15 minutes at the end to go over the current section. With the fire drill (and a longer quiz then planned), I had absolutely no time to do a lecture. Ah well...
    Maureen was sick today, also! I find this out only by a substitute teacher coming into the room and introducing herself. By law, a student teacher cannot teach a class by him/herself. If the cooperating teacher is absent, then the district must get a sub. Since I am already teaching most of the classes and I know more about the rest of them then any sub, it seems pointless to have a sub at all. But the law's the law...
    In third hour, then, I had the class work in their groups for the entire hour. They worked on definitions for the first 20 minutes or so and just wasted time for the rest of the hour.
    4th hour is done with all the sections in the chapter so I started them on the chapter review. Nearly all of the class finished the review before the end of the hour.
    5th hour lasted only 30 minutes. Today was homecoming, so the school got out of class to do homecoming things like tug of war and relays. I didn't want to deal with a rowdy class for the 30 minutes they were there, so I laid down the law early on. I told them that if they weren't angels for the entire 30 minutes -- if even one person was talking -- then the entire class would stay back until I let them go. Now that was effective! Whenever a kid would start to talk, everybody around him would immediately shut him up. I had them work on their chapter reviews until the bell rang.
    I thought that that was about it. After all, we were told that the students would report to their 7th hour class just long enough to take role and then they would go to a pep assembly. That was what we were told. So the students come in; I take role; The bell rings; The students leave... only to come back one minute later looking like whipped puppies! "Mr Sundblad yelled at us to get back to our rooms," they say. I hear that they are supposed to wait for the second bell before going. OK. The second bell rings and they leave again. They come back again. "They told us to go back to our classrooms!" This time, I go talk to Craig and am told that there is an elementary gym class going on until 2:20. The second bell is actually the fourth bell. Apparently, Jen is setting up the homecoming activities for the first time and she hasn't ironed out all the bugs. So I sit in the class and listen to a few of the more emotional girls hyperventilate until the bell rings again. This time it is for real. Finally.
    All in all, the day was pretty easy to handle. But with all the sitting around, it sure was boring...

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