Monday, July 09, 2007

'Cows in the kitchen..

... go moo moo moo. What shall we do Tom farmer?'

Oops did you just catch me singing songs from CBeebies again! My favorite is 'story makers, story makers....'. Sorry, this is the wrong place for sharing my favourite tunes from my favourite channels! Well I don't watch Cbeebies that much anymore, but more of Toonami and Cartoon Network - it depends on present company. If Bear, Mini Bear or King Kong are around we have to watch Power Rangers. I preferred it back in my day- waking up too early on Saturday mornings just to watch it! Obviously we can't forget Tom and Jerry, which is funny regardless of company. (Tracy Beaker annoys the life out of me). Do I continue giving you a whole history of what I watched and still watch? Erm Dragon Ball Z was something the whole family\{parents} were into as were other Toonami cartoons. (X-men, teen titans....). Last but not least POKEMON. That has to be the best of them all 'Pikachu, I choose you!'. The first batch of episodes was the best since at least then I could flippin name the 150 odd Pokemon, but now I've lost count. I still watch that whenever I have the remote, but misty seems to have disappeared and a lot of old Pokemon too. :( [It seems that Beyblade doesn't come on anymore].

That paragraph probably explains why I'm seven years old. Weirdly my whole family loves cartoons- even my Dad watched/s some of them! If you're still not convinced about my little argument, then a concrete proof shall follow soon. However to those who are not fans of Pokemon, you may not be entertained and so may forever remain wondering the weird and wonderful way my head works. (I should have gone into the media business- at least there I can get away with writing nice things about myself. ;)) Feel free to discuss cartoons that you remember watching or still watch now (hopefully!). Some of you may have noticed that this mornings post was at 3am. Yes- that's a better explanation for this cartoon business. Today my mouth seemed to have a mind of its own!

I somehow managed to wake up in the morning and get to school on time (a little disjoint, if I may say so). Thankfully I wasn't the only person having difficulties keeping my eyes open, but I was having more difficulty walking at my normal pace. Yesterday's painting memories wanted to be remembered- my left leg was in bad shape. Not to worry though, a quick game of football sorted that out. It was a rather rough game. I collected the ball nicely on my left foot and then I had quickly transferred it on my favoured right foot. A quick turn allowed me to evade a player, and somehow I managed to keep my balance and get past a few more players. I got kicked a few times on my ankles (ouch!), but imagine setting the answer up nicely as I did in the LU factorisation question in the exam. You've gone past the hard bit, wriggling past barriers, pushing through whatevers in your way. Finally, you see the opening and create room for the shot. You picture the goal in your head-picking the sweet spot at the same time. You picture checking your answer to find that you haven't made a mistake.

Bham- you shoot, but you find yourself eating dirt! The beautiful image in your head no longer there- you quickly pick yourself up, not allowing the other team to see how you've hurt. Are you hurt because you'd done all the hard work, and didn't get the cake at the end? Or are you hurting from the rough challenge which you hadn't anticipated? No rough challenge ever causes you pain in football. Nope- that's a fact, unless you unfortunately break your leg or sprain your ankle (ouch) as a result of the tackle. What you see on TV is drama. Honestly the adrenaline kicks in and that feels great. As soon as you're down you want to be back up again in the next second, not rolling about on the floor for attention. For Pete's sake, this is a game not a drama class. Boy does that adrenaline rush feel great! Don't worry though, in the same way that I hopefully corrected my LU factorisation, I scored a goal later - with my left foot as well! Well my right foot had done all the hard work again, and if I was to take the shot with my right foot I'd have probably been tackled or missed! Boy, do I love playing football. There's nothing like it. Even now my feet seem to be twitching. :o

The football had shrugged me out of any dreariness and that makes me think that on Monday mornings all students should do some exercise of some form. ;) I can imagine quite a few objections to that, but it gets the blood pumping around your body for the morning at least! The first maths lesson was with the year 7 class. I really enjoyed it, especially when you're helping someone and they go 'aha, yes I see' and then do the rest of the questions on their own. Maybe I'm trying too hard when I don't give them the answers but ask them questions- stupid ones at times- but that's the challenge. The did sequences today and had to write the 10th term of a sequence amongst other things. One student worked this out term by term(!), but some got the general idea.

Now I must contradict my previous claim that the footy game got the blood pumping through my body, because the blood flow must have slowed down nearer to my brain! The teacher had written the sequence, '3, 5, 7,...' on the board. In my head I was trying to think of the formula for this, and whilst I was doing so one student said, '2n+1'. This was the cue for me to check it and I did so by seeing whether the formula gave the correct first term. ' two times one equals four and plus one equals five.' Wait. The students formula is wrong. I did the same calculations again i.e. (2 x 2) + 1=5. I stopped following the lesson for a while and tried the formula 2n-1. 'Hmmm, two times one is four, and minus one is three.' Phew, I have the right formula. I then sat back and continued following the lesson.

All of a sudden it hit me. 'Stupid beans! Two times one is TWO, not four. (2 x 1=2).' I didn't think it was wise to start banging my head against the nearest wall at the time, since the students would probably be put of maths and I wouldn't be setting a good example! (also would probably be given a bad reference!) I hope you didn't injure yourself in the process of reading that paragraph. :o Giving myself a few well deserved internal kicks, I decided that laughter was the best medicine in this instance and so sat with a dopey grin on my face. Amused at my stupidity, and amused that I hadn't learnt from saying that 3x3x3=9! The teacher did give me a funny look and so the amusement became internal as well. I did later mention this to the teacher, and thankfully we laughed about it. (No walls were involved.)

So going on that start, how would my day continue to progress? It went rather OK, giving the fact that I was in SG's class (Year 8, set 3)! Today it wasn't SG who was the problem- it was fifty cents. In the corridor I'd heard 50 cents say a swear word. It wasn't a 'baby' swear word but according to my scale of bad, it was right at the top. I was honestly quite shocked. Not that 50 cents had said this word, but by the fact that 50 cents didn't see any problem in using such language. 'But it's not a swear word, I only said ******'. I really couldn't believe it and didn't know how to react. I made it clear to 50 cents that language like that was unacceptable and had hoped not to hear that word from his mouth again. Naturally 50 cent kept the whole rapping image up and the 'what's up homie' thing going. Once again they were quite bemused when I replied the ceiling, but they understood it today!

Fifty cents is to put it bluntly a disruptive student. He knows his stuff though, and it's more of case of being lazy and possibly not being pushed. I think what some teachers do, is that they think that just because they're teaching a lower set the class can be expected to misbehave and so are allowed to. Trust me, as a student, we know when we can or can't take 'advantage' of teachers and as soon as they open the door once, we know it can be opened. I'm not saying that you should be strict all the time, but there has to be some law and order. You can't say that because I like playing football you'll let me play during lessons \hyperbole. You can't teach these students with a label that the set may carry. In this class I noticed that what most students did was 'lethargically' write the title- some spending ages on it, whilst others not caring. They then had a nice long conversation of whatever tickled their pickle and during the pause in conversation they underline the title.

The other day when I'd had a bad day, I'd said something about this class to another teacher and the maths teacher. We'd had a talked about the beahviour etc and today the teacher did split up a few people and set down the rules. SG and friend were moved to the back corner on their own, but 5o cents and best mate moved to the middle. The number of questions I was asked about myself was unbelievable! Is it too hard to believe that I'm seven?? ;) (that probably infuriated them more!)

At the end of the lesson the teacher said that this was probably one of the few times when most of them had got started on the exercise. (don't quote me word for word on that.) SG and mate being in the back corner meant that even if they did talk, they only disrupted each other. SG did less work than the mate, but they got on with it today and didn't bother me too much. I did try to get SG to get more work done, but that would have been counter productive! One other student, who as a result of SG moving, ended up being sat on by themselves. (well there was another student on the table but they didn't talk). This student had been part of both SG's and 50 cent's groups when they'd been trying to annoy me, and so had been doing all that 'yo wassup' business. The student (YW) tried this again, however with no SG and 50 cents around I went in for the kill! I didn't shout at the student, but enquired as to how long this would go on for, and I was no longer amused! (and some other words to that effect). Thankfully instead of getting some fists for lunch, YW was the first one to finish the work and get started on the exercise! I was shocked to be honest, and it shows what putting your head down and not having distracting friends can do for you. (well you can have distracting friends, but at this age you can't pull yourself back into tho work and you don't know when to pull yourself out.)

Another student who had mainly been part of 50 cents gang was also getting on with the work. It was about shapes and the angles in certain quadrilaterals, which they had to determine. This was the best bit of the class- when I was trying to help these students understand what was happening. LS unfortunately didn't manage to get onto the exercise, but that was because places had been switched. A lot of copying probably happened, but the classroom rumble was not the same as last weeks. Conversations were never ending but SG was at least quiet! Yep-I've been avoiding mentioning 50 cents. 50 cents and mate said that swear word again. Once again I got hot under the collar, namely because they don't know what is right and what is wrong. Fifty cents had actually thought me as one of his 'homies' and maybe that's why he felt it was necessary to swear in front of me. Why? To show he's a cool 'bad boy' and could do all these things. This time I made it clear to 50 cents that I'm not his homie and if I was to hear that word a third and final time the head of year will know. (well I'd tell the maths teacher and then that would happen I presume!)

This didn't make 50 cents too happy, and although he managed to only do half of the work he was less demanding for my 'help' (i.e. for me to confirm that the shape that he knew was a rectangle was not a square.) He's a bright kid as I have gathered during the questions he answered, but I'm glad that the score has been settled. I'm no ones homie. *cool face* :D Hehe, I don't want to be evil to 50 cents, but since 50 cents knows his stuff he's not helping his mates who don't. (However, 50 cents did still continue to deliberately see how far I could be pushed, but since I wasn't having a bad day, things went OK.) BTW: the Polya book has been a great help.

I didn't want that lesson to end if I'm being honest! :o There is something about teaching which makes you want to help the students more and more at times, even when lessons overs. You want to guide them and help them, especially if they seemed focused and are doing the work. Also the challenge of getting the lazy and disruptive ones to work is quite intense. In the same way I hate people talking during lectures I got frustrated by people talking when the teacher was explaining things. The same people who'd been talking then didn't know what to do. You shouldn't also let on to the students that you're having a bad day. Since this is an experience for me, I may not have been particularly good at that, but some teachers are great at it! I picked up a lot of pointers today, and maybe should have jotted them down when they'd come to me. Meh- if they're that important I'll remember them again.

My body has been having a mental battle with my brain today. (In primary school I once wrote brian!). After school, and after an 80 minute break, I went with Spud to help Bob. Spud and myself helped Bob for about 4 hours! It was a pain. Our job- get rid of the wall paper in the rooms upstairs. Bob had borrowed a streamer from someone, but even so, doing this and other jobs was exhausting. Tomorrow after school it'll be more of the same, but at both sites. Normally when I get home after a long days work, I tend to collapse and my bodies normal response does not allow me to move. It's repairing business probably starts and so if I do move, it's rather gingerly. I haven't let that happen today, hence why there is an upset in the balance. Boy am I glad that I'm not doing a 9-5 part time job, although I might have to now. :(

I really want to drive you see. :o It's because someone who passed last year recently bought a second hand car. It was quite cheap, and I was taken for a ride in it. It was a life threatening experience, since the driver is quite nervous and I felt like screaming, 'hit the brakes fool!', but didn't as to not cause panic. Is it normal for me to think that driving is going to be cool and fun, and that hopefully I'll be ok at it? Wait- that's an understatement. Whilst I was sat in a car, I sheepishly felt that I could drive better! It's because of the blood flowing through my veins which has experience in playing racing car games. :o

I over exaggerate. The driver was good but got really nervous when stopping and starting. I also felt that they didn't brake gradually, but slammed them on in the last minute (hoping for the traffic lights to turn green!). I had my chance in college, but then I had too much going on (student council, exams etc) and couldn't dedicate time for driving. You could say I feel quite impatient about the whole thing, and don't want to drag it out for a long time. First things first- get my provisional license. (This driver told me that they'd thought the same thing about driving before actually getting lessons- am I going to face the harsh wake up call? :( ) I don't need to drive, but it's a skill and it's 'cool'. I'm the only person from all of my friends who can't drive as well. (my theory about driving in computer games implying one can drive in real life has been the heart of my argument!)

I look forward to tomorrow (today!) and although I don't want the week to end, I don't want tomorrow to start. (I do apologise for the messy post- it seems to be all over the place, much like my head at the moment.)

PS: This darn nostalgia is driving me insane! Maybe it's about time I rang up some of the old crowd... :/

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