Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Alberta Health

Well, our Christmas present budget may have gone the way of the Dough-Dough (see, an extinct bird pun). Alberta Health just tracked us down after two moves and dinged us with almost $1,100.00 in overdue premiums. We're applying for the subsidy, but Christmas shopping is on hold until such time as we can get this sorted out. Watch this space if you feel like you should be getting a present from us, because you will be able to find out for sure if you will not be getting one. Announcements will be made!

Stupid government.

Based on the forms and the website, we qualify. Based on what the person told me on the phone, we don't. All I can do is apply and find out.

What fun.

Friday, October 19, 2007

I Made the Vile Bastards Sing the Barney Song...

Well, I am officially a sadistic witch... And it feels great!

I decided if you can't beat 'em, make 'em sing. My new policy is if you are late for my Social Studies class you have two choices, you can 1. Go and visit with the principal, or 2. Stand at the front of the room and sing a song of my choosing. I got to test it out twice yesterday. It was glorious! The kids never pick going to the principals office...Wonder why?

The first group was a pack of three young lads who have been showing up for class late fairly often. After numerous detentions and even phone calls home, I decided I needed something more powerful. All three boys were told to stand at the front of the room facing the class. Now, to trully appriciate this you need to know that in my classroom I have a "stage"- the front. The first 6 feet of my room are literally a stage that is about 3/4 of a foot higher than the rest of the room, so they really get the spotlight, I even had the projector shinning on them!... But anyhow back to the delinquents. So they figured it was no big deal that they were 8 minutes late and class had started. When the boys arrived they were told to stand at the front and that they would be performing. When they asked me what they were to sing I told them twinkle twinkle little star. They started the song and it died about three beats in. They didn't know the words. So then I told them to do the ABC song. They started and then they messed up the alphabet. After getting a laugh out of the class for not knowing the alphabet, I told them they had to sing it again, without mistakes. They did it again, but no one could hear it, so I made them do it again- louder. Well, by the end of it these boys, who had been trying so hard to go for "Joe Cool", were nothing more than red faced geeks who didn't even know the alphabet. They won't be late again. The second group that was late in one of my other classes got to do the Barney Song. Even they had to do it several times. I think the lates and bad behaviour will stop. If not, I am on a role comming up with sadistic punishments so that I at least get some enjoyment out of my work. I must say, I really enjoy comming up with ways to punish my bad little students.

Just to let you all know, I did have a better week this week. I think I might not quit afterall, at least not until next week...

Monday, October 15, 2007

So I just voted

I feel that it is important to vote even in something as inconsequential as the Spruce Grove Municipal election, and as such, I studied the campaign lit, checked some boxes, and exercised my franchise yet again. At least this time, I had no notion of hating any of the candidates I was voting for, as has been the case in the past.

Also, I changed the furnace filter. It really needed it.

Monday, October 08, 2007

The rare and irregular rantings of Jenn...

Well, this our blog afterall. I realize I don't write very often. It's rare that I have time. But I have decided to take some time today.

First year teaching sucks. The first month of this first year was bloody awful. I am not really enjoying my job right now and what's more is I wonder if I ever will. Everyone says it gets better. I hope they are right, but right now I don't believe them. The kids are horrible people, every last one of them. They are all so obnoxious and I am starting to get really tired of dealing with them. I just don't remember it every being ok to waltz into a class late in junior high. I also don't remember it ever being ok to come to class unprepared, yet for some reason my students don't seem to understand why I get mad at them for these behaviours, or why they get punished for them. Usually when you rub a puppy's nose in his mistake he understands, it just doesn't seem to work the same with my students- they really don't get it. Sometimes I think maybe I should just be meaner, and that may be the approach I need to take with these kids. It seems to be what is needed. They all already hate me, and to tell you the truth I don't like them any either, so there is nothing to loose. I just don't ever remember these behaviours as being ok. Now to be completely honest, most of these behaviours are comming from my grade 9 social studies kids and not my band students, my band students are great and I like most of them.

What's really getting me right now is all the work I am doing just to "stay afloat" as the say. I have been putting in 14 hour days and working through the weekends right now. I calculated it out, and if this is what it takes, I am making about $12.00 and hour. I am getting to the point where I am considering not teaching next year if things don't improve soon. I am taking things one week at time in order to be a bit more positive and to look for the improvements. It's hard though, I am tired. I wake up at night and can't get back to sleep because I am thinking about work too much. On Tuesday I have 3 boys in for detentions at lunch for comming late to my class and waltzing right in during an in-progress exam. It gets better though... They thought it was ok to walk up to students who were writing their exams and start talking to them. The Gall! I couldn't believe it. So they have a lunch hour detention (because we can't keep them after school) and now I have to think of some creative punishment for them to fulfill. I am thinking of retorting to lines or making them write an essay, but I don't know.... Some peoples kids...sigh.

On a more exciting note, we got to go to two hockey games this weekend. We saw the Oilers beat Philly 5-3 on Saturday and yesterday we saw the Pats beat the Oil Kings 6-2... The Oil Kings have only been playing together for a few weeks though, I think there is still hope for them as a team... We took my little sister and the Spanish exchange student that has been living with my family to the Oil Kings game. She is an adorable girl and she loved the hockey. She escpecially loved the fighting and smashing. She also was quite intriuged by the fact that most of the boys on the team were 16-19, or at least she was until she saw their teeth....

Saturday, October 06, 2007

This cold sucks.

I started coming down with this whatever it is on Sunday night, and now I am strongly considering going to the doctor if it doesn't improve over the weekend. I woke myself up coughing last night at 1:00 AM, which was not fun. I'm off to take some dayQuil

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

First Day of Work

Got there on time, by 1:30 I thought I was going to pass out I was so dizzy. My throat went from scratchy to can't swallow, and I had no cough drops. When I got home, I went to bed at 8:00 PM, and didn't get up until 6:30 the next morning, when I went to do it all over again.

And most of my files haven't made it there yet. I'm taking about 30. I looked at the family law files at the new firm, and there are about 120. Tomorrow morning I am going to go through and see where things are and what needs done and see how many of these are real files and how many are just sitting or A/R. 150 files..... That's a lot. I consider 80 a full load. We'll see how the split with MD goes.

Oh, did I mention that the family law assistant's last day was last Friday? Anyone know a legal assistant who wants work?