Friday, May 10, 2013

No One Wants to Play School with Me!

It's getting to be that time of year. We've reached the last few weeks of school and final tests are being administered, projects are being submitted, and end-of-the-year paperwork needs to be organized. This past week was REALLY overwhelming with all those responsibilities on top of every day life that just refuses to take a break during the busy times. I had several days where I thought, "If I could just have another couple sets of hands, I could get all of this done so quickly!"

At home, this would be the time of year that I would put out a call to see if I could sucker any friends into playing Teacher for a day. There's always at least one. People who don't teach think it's so much fun to grade tests! Rifling through filing cabinets and throwing out old worksheets or dusting off classroom bookshelves seems to be like a fun session of make-believe for those who don't have to do it every day. And I willingly gave my friends the opportunity to hearken back to the old days of pretend at our dining room tables when we used to drill our stuffed animals on the i-before-e rule. (Admit it. We all did it.)

But HERE! Here all my friends ARE teachers! They all have their own classrooms to organize, tests to grade. It's a real jerk move for me to whine and say, "I have so much to do, would you mind helping me grade these tests really quickly?"

Ain't nobody got time for that!

I guess this is one teensy weensy downside to living overseas in a teacher expat community.

Vicariously yours,

Thursday, May 2, 2013

So much money and time on their hands, it's dangerous

I worked at an low-income urban public school in Nashville. I didn't realize it at the time, but I absolutely loved it. I miss working in MNPS (words I NEVER thought I'd say) the longer we are away. Working in this VERY high income, for-profit, private international schools has been a little bit of a shock to my system.

I sound like I don't enjoy my international students, but I do. They have their own unique charms, just like my kids back home did. But I think the most shocking part of working with such affluence is the crap these kids bring to school!

The other day I confiscated a laser pointer. Classic goods in a middle school. But this is like an industrial strength, retina damaging kind of laser pointer. It hurts looking at the little dot as we giggle at our Kitty frantically running around the house chasing her newest green foe.

If you look closely, you can actually SEE the laser beam!

What does ANYBODY need with a laser pointer this strong outside of military service!? This laser could seriously cause some damage. To see how strong it was, the Mister shined the laser through our window and across the highway AND WE COULD STILL SEE THE LASER DOT! The kid I took it from was flabbergasted when I told him he wasn't getting it back till the end of the school year. But I'm sure I'll probably see him with another one later next week. Because that's been the common theme among our students here in Kuwait: if they want it, they'll get it.

One of the more shocking desires that many of the kids at my current school have had indulged is the yearning for an exotic pet. Students have lions, cheetahs, and rare breeds that are smuggled in from who knows where. It's disgusting, and most of my kids are really confused as to why their crazy American teachers are so upset by their pet choices.

I shamelessly stole this from a colleague's facebook feed. It's  a cheetah that has been left in someone's car while they go in to a mall for an evening stroll, I'm sure.

What baby wants, baby gets.

Very different from my kids at home. But it certainly makes for some very entertaining times. Especially for the Kitty.

Vicariously yours,