Friday, April 1, 2011

I'm Working!!! April Fools!!

So today was supposed to be a day when I could relax, grading last quarter's portfolios and projects and starting my new syllabi from bed. I don't know why the image of this "relaxing" day always had me in bed, except in years past, I used to love working in bed with all my papers and books strewn about me. But, of course, there's no rolling out of bed and into coffee and work. There's taking Tot to daycare and then there was the leak under the sink.

So Tot, who deserves a better moniker, is moving up into the next room with the big kids. I think this is a great move for him, because being with the babies had him asking for a bottle. He's done a lot of new things lately: he's talking up a storm (often too fast for us to understand); he asks for milk, which is completely new; he responds to our calls that it's time to go to bed, somewhat. Which is a great foundation for the future. So I met the lead teacher, and we talked about organic and non-GMO food preferences and all the things they do in that room. It's more structured than the toddler room. On the one hand, I think this is great. On the other hand, I'm pretty convinced by the Montessori method of having children be self-directed in a carefully-constructed environment where they can work together and teach each other, as I went to a Montessori myself (though too late for it to be pivotal) and I am also highly critical of the general educational method with the hidden curriculum that says: sit and be quiet; the teacher will tell you the answer because you can't figure it out yourself; all answers are in books rather than in direct observation and experimentation; the way to success and approbation is through docility and following orders. Though I went to a nearby Montessori's open house day pretty recently and saw Tot focus on moving beans from bowl to bowl with a spoon, AL and I have been so busy and wanting to do our own thing in the odd hours that we haven't been able to have sustained conversations about this -- or anything. (We're totally talking past each other in our discussions of whether to move, sign another lease at this place, or what.)

Anyway, Tot moving up to the new room is good in any case.

So I've got ten portfolios staring at me (out of 19 I need to do and, I think, odd projects for about 8 students in my other class), but that doesn't mean I've done a darn thing. Instead I've been on the Timesuck, a.k.a. Facebook, which I had ignored for a few months. Two important discoveries: one person who I'm not friends with anymore but who I'm still curious about (I did Zie wrong, though I didn't do it on purpose and so Zie ended the friendship, which, I admit, was too much for me and had grown into something where I felt I couldn't be myself) has finally un-privatized hir FB info. So I'm weirdly glad to see that Zie looks so happy. Part of me wants to send a message to hir just saying that for all my thoughtlessness when we were friends, I think of hir still and wish Zie the best, but on the other hand I don't want to intrude. Much worse, it looks like my favorite couple in the world may be splitting up. Since I moved to the other side of the country, I've been out of touch with a lot of people -- and this split is just terrible. I hope I'm wrong.

There's been a lot of stuff going on at work -- lots of stuff I'm not very happy about. Lots of situations that really need to be addressed, but can I address them? Should I address them? And how do I explain to a certain Dickhead that rushing to a solution for a complex problem really disappoints me, angers me, and shows me that if Zie thinks that hir students don't take open-minded inquiry seriously, then I can bloody well see why. I realize lots of people don't agree with this, but to me service is a place where I'm called upon to walk the talk -- where I'm supposed to put my thoughtful and reflective scholarly self to work on shared problems. In fact, I've been raging pissed about this recently, but my therapist helped me with all this.

Therapy is going well. I'm also putting Tot into another day of daycare so I'll get more done. I'm determined to get that article to Fave Journal for a variety of reasons. Just determined. Since I got back from that conference I've felt so isolated -- both from friends and from the exciting conversations in my field. (Hence back on FB.) I've decided that I'm going to read more scholarship and do an article swap with a great friend-colleague of mine from grad school. Truth be told, I don't want to work on these student papers or my syllabi because I really want to be working on scholarship, but obviously I'm not doing that either.

So. . .I need to get to work. Even thinking of what I should do first and everything just takes the wind out of my sails. I guess I should get to work on a syllabus or two. Actually read the teaching journal I wrote. Blech. It doesn't sound like fun at all.

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