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March 8, 2016 / sharoncopy

Days 60 – ???

I lost track of what day I’m on. Suffice it to say that I’m only subbing three afternoons a week this semester due to my day classes at Henry Ford College. Here are some highlights from the past few weeks.

Music Teacher: Here’s the lesson plan that was left for me. For each class, I was to choose 5 fairly known pieces that were on a CD (2 to 3 minutes each) – such as Fur Elise, 1812 Overture, William Tell Overture, Rhapsody in Blue, et cetera. I played the piece through one time for the 5th or 6th graders to just listen. Second time – they were to take notes about the music – fast/slow, orchestra, piano – tell what they could figure out. Third time thru, they were to write down what the music made them think of.

THIS was fun. I chose 5 different pieces for each class, and had a wonderful afternoon of listening to glorious music and watching the kids jump at sudden bombastic measures and smile at phrases that struck them as odd. Afterwards – I gave them a quiz – I played each of the five (random order) to see if they could, using their notes, give the correct name for each one. As I said, THIS was fun. I used ‘From the Hall of the Mountain King” by Grieg as the sample. I told them about “The Pied Piper of Hamelin” also, since that piece will forever remind me of that film.

I’ve had a lot of great days – cooperative kids, fun conversations, actually teaching some subjects, and enjoying a bit of lighthearted teasing of them. I’ve subbed in 6th, 5th, 3rd, 2nd, 1st and Kindergarten this semester. I have avoided school districts with low income families, as I have found that those are the places where I find the most uncooperative students (albeit a small percentage, but enough to make the afternoon more difficult than I wish to manage.) Let me add that this is not a black/white issue, either, but the students in the lower income areas are not as well-behaved, for however many reasons they have.
With the undercurrent of distress that I currently carry regarding my parents’ situation, I don’t have the patience OR the training to deal with these kids right now.

I’ve read some Seuss books, taught everybody “Five Little Bluebirds” and lately added the teaching of “Oh, What a Rain That Would Be” from Barney. The kids love learning these songs and I love delighting in the kids as they learn them.

This week (March 7, 2016) I am off on Spring break from Henry Ford College, so I’m working full time for a much better paycheck. So far this week, so good. I was the Art teacher in Plymouth Monday, and Tuesday was split between two elementaries in Livonia – 1st grade, then a fairly wild Kindergarten group (who argued and argued with one another over everything – not unusual, but – seems like this group did it more than most – they are on their THIRD teacher this year – the parapro says they wore the first two out. Yeah, they were rambunctious and kind of annoying at times, but when I read Seuss to them – they ate it up, and they loved learning the songs too. Engaging and interacting is always best, and for the 2 that wouldn’t cooperate – they got to sit out on the sidelines instead of with the rest of the group. For 5 year olds – that’s usually sufficient to make the point.


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