Sunday, March 06, 2016

Sub Conscious

Every time I sub I go to Subway for lunch. The first year I subbed I only worked at my local school, too afraid to go to some weird school where I didn't know where the bathroom was. Now I take every call, because every call means money. Also because then I get to eat lunch with a real soda with ice in it. And also something strange is happening. I'm starting to LIKE it. I'm liking the stress of not knowing ANYONE, and not having ANY idea what's going on in the class, or knowing ANY of the kids. They hand me a key and a folder, I find the classroom, I open it, I am on spy duty suddenly. I have to look around, figure out when computer lab or library time is (that's a total score, because you can play games or read books and not lead in any way), read over the lesson plan the teacher left, try and figure out where the books are (every teacher leaves things their own special version of spaz - and it's my job to figure it out) - try and get a quick idea of the math (my worst nightmare) and then a bell rings and I have to get the kids. I like the kids. Kids are pretty amazing. Third and fourth grade are the best. They can do a lot of the work by themselves and they also like to tell you how the day runs. They know where everything is and they know when you're doing it wrong. But they also like to help. There are always really helpful girls who work hard and are kind of shy. Smart boys are always shy too. There are always at least two loud boys. There is always one boy who does no work. He is just sitting there. If you use a bell on the desk that dings, it saves your voice. If you keep them quiet when you first get there, they will be quiet most of the day. When you take them to p.e. they will always argue about the rules of the games. I used to think I was there to change everything, to make them SEE certain things, because I am important. But I am not there for that. I'm there to keep them learning, and to observe them. The boy who doesn't do anything and the loud boys are not the losers. They are just learning in their own way. And all kids, every kid, wants to be important. They have good little hearts. I'm liking that I get flung into a classroom with 25 kids looking at me and I can do it. I like learning the stuff. I like being excited about the book we're reading out loud and I like calling the kids up to act out ideas. Because school should be fun. I like that it's all over by 2, and the rest of the day is mine. I like that I help pay the rent. And that I don't miss any time with my kids. So I'm amassing my material for my Subculture book. It's a weird world, it's the life of a temp, the mom life of temp. What's good is it uses nurturing mom skills mixed with the strict schedule of the Nazi school environment. Maybe that's harsh. All I know is there's food, I get to wear jeans, and it's still possible to play games if we get all the work done.