If it looks like crazy, it’s just an ordinary day

Published August 31, 2014 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

I survived my trial by fire first week as a Middle School Theater teacher. I love the school, the faculty is great(even though someone left a paper jam in the copier. I un-jammed it, but the office machinery surgery took so long, I didn’t have a chance to make my copies. I passive-aggressively left the paper I pulled out of  the jam and left it on top of the copier.)

This week was interesting.  Considering that I am used to teaching classes that have 20 or less students, jumping into a new job where my smallest class has 20, and the fact that I didn’t officially have an email or a roll of tape until fourth day of school, it actually went more smoothly  than I anticipated.  I was so focused on wowing them on the first day, I kind of forgot to plan the rest of the week. That mostly took care of itself and when the principal of the school and the theater director of the whole district dropped by, the kids (all 43 of them) were actively engaged and having great noisy fun.

The highlights:

1) at least five sixth graders say that theater is their favorite class

2) I actually found time to blink twice this week

3) Fun things are starting to happen.

4) I got that “we have a show” feeling when I looked at script for my ninth graders.

5) I got the kids attentions by using 600 hedgehogs in the hallway as an example for truth in improv and they actually understood the point I was trying to make.

6) The Fabricated American Mascot I chose for each class is working. A student actually walked into their scene wearing a Manatee. You just don’t see that kind of confidence everyday.

I have been too busy focusing on being in the moment for my students that I haven’t had time to focus on the fact that if racial tension doesn’t explode and divide the country, the Ebola Virus and the flame of violence shooting through the Middle East will. I can’t doom and gloom while keeping the kids focused on the manatee of the moment.

I’m exhausted. It takes a lot of energy spreading crazy around one day at a time.

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