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School Again

So today completed our first week. You know how enrollment night is... You are nervously sitting behind your desk and parents and grandparents ooh and aahh over your classroom. And for a few hours, yes, your classroom does look just about like a Pinterest board. So perfect that it even startles you a bit. You talk about your summer a lot and get a few hugs. And your kids come in with fresh notebooks and big fat erasers and gaze and shift around awkwardly and finally you seriously want them all to leave. And then they do and your neck is so tense and tight and your cheeks hurt from smiling at everyone. The first day this year was super awkward actually. The new kids seemed like they were almost scared of me. Someone looked at me almost panic eyed because it was their turn to read and they didn't have a book and hadn't figured out how to tell me I guess lol. And I asked questions to my talkative 8th graders about summer and got very quiet replies so finally gave up on that...

But, I think we're done with the firsts. When I'm making coffee after recess I have sometimes heard spirited discussions wafting out of my classroom down the hall. As of today the back counter is piled with last Friday's art project plus four hydraulic lifts made from popsicle sticks and syringes. We had to wipe hydraulic fluid (aka corn syrup) off some desks and the marbles we were testing the lifts with when flying to the floor at one point. We have some new inside jokes... Did you know the word sinister comes from an old word meaning lefthanded? Left handed meant bad luck in those days... My green highlighter has made its mark in lots of books, and the frownie faces for careless mistakes and blue fine slips for incomplete work are making their rounds. And I'm glad. This feels like my normal. This afternoon my girls wanted to know if they could go and sing and I told them they could sing in front of the classroom. Soon most of the boys joined them and I blew pitches from my desk and sang along...straight from the heart. And I was content.

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