Thursday, August 25, 2011

Let's Get Physical!

No, this isn't a post about Olivia Newton-John.  It's a post about my tired body.  You think I would be used to it, but I really forget every summer how physical teaching is.  I don’t think the non-teaching crew has any idea.  Here are just some of the ways I get my teaching workout:
Putting my room in order.  I have lifted so many boxes, unpacked tons of books, and climbed on more chairs and ladders to hang bulletin boards and posters than I can count. My body aches!  I feel like I’ve had a serious gym workout.  I have lifted so many heavy objects that I should be in that commercial: “I pick things up and put them down.”  I hope you know that commercial, or that just sounds crazy. J And, that picture below will make no sense to you!

Stairs:  I live in a one floor home.  In school, my classroom is on the second floor.  I pick up my friends downstairs each morning and walk them up.  During the course of the day, we hit those stairs several times.  The second floor is all classrooms, so we need to go downstairs for everything; lunch, specials, library, the computer lab, the nurse, the office, the photocopier, and the teacher’s lounge.  I also walk them down again at the end of the day.  It’s like having my own personal Stair Master!  I just do it with 24 little friends every day.
My feet hurt!  The first week of school is always killer on my feet.  All summer I’ve been in flip-flops, sneakers, or mostly barefoot.  My tootsies always pay the price for putting those school shoes back on.  I don’t even want to think about heels!  There are a couple of teachers I work with who rock the full-on 3 inch heels every day.  I just can’t do it, and I have no idea how they do it.  I’m a comfy flats girl.  However, even my comfy flats are uncomfortable by the end of day in early September.
Oh, the sounds of silence!  Unlike in school, I am not required to talk ALL DAY LONG in the summer.  Welcoming my friends to a new school year requires a lot of conversation.  There’s welcoming them, telling them about you, going over procedure, etc.  On top of that, we have to be so repetitive. Those first couple of weeks you are constantly reinforcing and reminding procedures.  In September, I can’t just say, “Okay friends, let’s line up for lunch.”  Instead, I have to say, “Okay friends, let’s line up for lunch.  Remember, we push in our chairs and form a single file line.  And, let’s make sure we are nice and quite as we travel through the halls.  Did everyone remember to get their lunch from their locker? Who is last in line?  Remember, it’s your job to turn off the lights and close the door.  Okay, this line looks great!  We are ready to go!”  And, this kind of thing goes on throughout the entire day in September.  All I can say is that by the time I get in my car to head home, I don’t even turn on the radio.  I am so done with talking.  I don’t want to hear myself or anyone else for a bit!  I just relish the silence.
These are all the things I just forget about until the start of the school year.   The good thing is that it doesn’t take too long to get back in the teaching groove and forget all these things again.  The room is in order, the feet adjust, the talking lessens, and the stairs. . .  well, there’s still the stairs!  But, it’s all good! 
And on that note, I’m going to go lie down now.

Oh!  Just a quick update.  The classroom is coming along!  I’m going in tomorrow to finish up the décor and organization stuff.   I will be bringing home my lesson prep materials to work on over the weekend.  Hurricane Irene is going to hit us Saturday and Sunday, so I’m planning to hunker down and get a lot done.  Or, sleep.

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