Friday, January 26, 2007

Commitment schmamitment

I can't believe I haven't posted since Tuesday! So much for my "commitment" to myself to post everyday. Apparently it bit the dust shortly after the "eat better" commitment collided with the Girl Scouts.

I think it's because our schedule was so wacky. I've been extra-exhausted this week after only going to work on Friday last week due to the ice storms. Then, when we all got to school Monday morning, they told us that there was a water main that had broken. We had to send all the kids home! I did get several hours of work done that day, though. It's amazing what I can accomplish when I don't have to actually teach. :-)

So, this wasn't even a full week -- only FOUR days -- and I'm still ridiculously tired.

On the upside, my students did some fun labs this week. I'm in a brand-new lab that I get to stock and set up throughout this year! It's been a blast.

My biology I class is covering fungi, so we looked at various fungi, both live and preserved specimens. They'll finish the lab with preserved slides on Monday. I love subjects that make my students go, "Eeeewww!!! Moldy food!!!". I actually gave extra credit to students for bringing in specimens of moldy bread or fruit, because, the ONE time I actually NEEDED moldy bread, there was none to be found in our house. Sheesh. Of course, it was the night before I needed it... can't make it mold overnight very well (I had several students who tried to do that, too!).

My IPC (physical science) class is beginning a unit on acids and bases. We'll be doing a lab next week, and I wanted to impress on them the importance of lab safety. So, I cracked an egg into a petri dish on the overhead. The light shines through the transparent portion of the white. I explain that the white of the egg is protein, much like their eye is protein. Then I drop hydrochloric acid onto it, which fries the egg just as if it were in a pan on the stove. It turns opaque, and has a pretty big "wow" factor.

My chemistry class used the fume hood for the first time all year. I've been waiting for some ventilation errors to be fixed. They did a neat limiting reactants lab with magnesium and hydrochloric acid. The reaction fizzes and fumes and generates a lot of heat (I think I know some people who could be described that way). They love being in the lab. I'm getting ready to order materials for us to tie-dye t-shirts. I remember doing that in my high school chemistry class. I wore that shirt until it actually fell apart.

As I read back over the list of labs I wrote, taught, prepared, supervised, and cleaned up after, I'm beginning to think that I have a reason to be tired this Friday evening. Especially considering that I also gave and graded several tests and quizzes, oh, and that pesky job of managing a classroom, and did it all in FOUR days.


Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Not the bed! Anything but that!!

What IS it in a two-year-old kid that propels him from his bed as if it were on fire, precisely three seconds after his parent lays him down on it? Repeatedly? For an hour, usually between 8:00 and 9:00 p.m.?

What is it in him that draws him out of his bed in a sleepy state at three a.m. to stumble to our room, only to stand next to our bed and breathe on me until I realize that something is standing next to my bed, breathing on me?

What part of his little body finds it sooooooooo difficult to just stay in bed? There are days that I can't wait to get into my bed in the evening. Does he ever feel that way? If he does, what is it that triggers that desire? I'd really like to know so I can plan to do it every single day.

I love my son. I really, really, really do. As far as real troubles go, this isn't a huge issue. But it happens every evening, when I'm the most tired.

I've tried the Supernanny trick -- putting him back in bed without saying anything. I've spent hours doing that. He just gets out of bed again. He doesn't cry or holler or argue. I've taken to just standing outside his door after I put him down. He's just as stubborn as I am. More stubborn, in fact, because I give in and rock him to sleep.

It wouldn't be that big of a deal, except that we worked so hard to get him to put himself to sleep, and he was doing so well for over a year. Then, suddenly, wham!, he's not into that anymore. He even did really well for a month or so after we switched him to his toddler bed. I guess we just got spoiled.

I'm trying to come up with a positive way to end this post -- I don't like for it to be completely negative... but seeing as how I actually wrote it (except for this last paragraph) two days ago, and my feelings on the subject haven't changed much since then, I think I'll just let it be. Suggestions for creating attractive chemistry between a toddler and his OWN bed are appreciated.


Monday, January 22, 2007

... and those Lemonades? They're awful. I promise.

It's Girl Scout Cookie Time again. They're smart to start selling them right around the time that people's resolve about their resolutions starts to falter.

My sister brought over some of the Lemonades. They're shortbread with lemon frosting on the bottom. As a favor, we finished them for her. Saved her from the temptation. That's what big sisters do, you know... Sacrifice LEFT and RIGHT for those little sisters.

The next day, a very cute little girl (about five or six years old) rang our doorbell. Who says no to a Girl Scout? Not me, I tell ya. I'm supportive. Bought three more boxes of cookies. Thin Mints for Knight (he freezes them), more Lemonades, and those Caramel Delights (my favorites).

The plan was to only eat part of the box of Lemonades, then give the rest to my sister to replace what we ate. At least we had a plan, right? I mean, that's good for partial credit or something, right?

A few hours after the cute little girl scout with the big, brown, pleading eyes conned me out of $10.50 and into about eleventy thousand extra calories, I received an email from my sister-in-law. Yep, you guessed it. Our niece is selling them, too. Not that I didn't see it coming. Again, I can't turn down a Girl Scout. Especially my niece. So I ordered one each of the Lemonades, Peanut Butter Patties, Thin Mints, Caramel Delights... and maybe one other one, but I can't remember just now. Kinda overloaded on sugar from the rest of the Lemonades that were supposed to go back to my sister.


Sunday, January 21, 2007

What do you know about tweetle beetles?

I, personally, am well-educated on the ins and outs of tweetle beetles. My area of emphasis has been in tweetle beetle warfare, particularly those battles involving paddles and puddles. If your life is lacking in knowledge regarding tweetle beetle warfare, I highly recommend Dr. Seuss' resource entitled Fox in Socks. I know the title of this epic is misleading, but if you follow through to the end, your efforts shall be rewarded.

I recommend nightly study, just prior to placing your offspring in their beds for their nighttime slumber. This has been my method of study for the last several weeks, and it has worked well.

Let me know how it works out for you.