Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Mork Calling Orsen, Come in Orsen

Yes, that's a Mork and Mindy reference. For those of you out there who never heard of the show, or weren't a TV hound like me, this was the TV show that started it all for Robin Williams. He was an alien (Mork) who arrived from outer space in Boulder, CO in an egg. As I write this, I realize just what a crazy twisted concept that was. And yet it all made sense.

The title of my post is the phrase that Mork would use to call "home". Orsen was the leader and would guide Mork through his confused life on earth with alien wisdom.

I'm feeling like Mork right now.

My last post was a preview of what was to come in the last month or so of school. Yet, as I'm in it now, I was a little off in my prediction. I should've said magnify the craziness by about ten. And then double that.

In addition to the neverending to-do list and event calendar, my class has gone off the deep end. They're done. They're done with elementary school. They're done with patience. They're done with listening. They're done with self-control. So while the end-of-year plates started spinning as predicted, a few more started at the same time.

The only saving graces in this whole thing have been two trips out of town. Chicago and Boston. Chicago to see family for a get-together, and Boston to see friends and the Cubs play the Red Sox at Fenway. On both occassions, there was a lot of eating and drinking. And a lot of laughing. And did I mention eating and drinking?

I continue my life as a pinball in the midst of these crazy weeks. Being hurtled from one crazy event to another, adding just one more event to my to-do list, telling a student to be respectful, packing a bag for a trip, unpacking the same bag and doing laundry, organizing a field trip, planting flowers, watching the skies open up again to rain.

Sometimes I wish I had an Orsen to call to explain it all to me and offer some wisdom to guide through this chaos.

But what fun would that be?

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

In the Blink of an Eye

May is always a month that whizzes by for teachers. Beginning sometime in March, dates are decided for important things like field day, ice cream socials, and farewell celebrations. The dates are penciled into calendars and while the snow drifts by the windows, teachers dream of better weather and the events ahead.

Yet when May finally arrives in all of its blooming-spring glory, it's almost like a shock that we're finally there. The dreams that were created 2 months ago and seemed impossibly far away, are here.

This week I experienced my first, oh my gosh, it's May already and I have so much to do and can I get everything fit in and wasn't it just March when I wrote this event in the calendar and it's really only 3 weeks until Memorial Day and do I have to actually teach when I have all of these meetings and events and farewells and and and and.

I have been attending a tech integration class for professional development. It has been a series of classes that has met four times over the course of the school year. When we first got the schedule in September, I almost laughed at the May date. That far away? I don't know if I'll make it until next week! And yet there I was, yesterday, sitting in that May class. I could hardly believe it.

It's around this time that teachers realize that the remainder of the year is so short compared to what we've been through. There's a sense of accomplishment to flip back in the calendar and see what has already been done, what we've endured. And yet, there's a bittersweet feeling too. Happy to be close to summer, but nostalgic about the year behind. Looking forward to sending kids on their way, but knowing this group will never be together as a whole again.