Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Evolution of Wishes

I wished I could be her,
a black woman teacher,
just for a day.
When I said that, she chuckled and said,
"Oh Maya, you would love it."
At the time, I knew she was right.
To be her would have given me
the attitude of a loving mom
who cares, who shares,
who doesn't take junk,
who demands the best.

Now my wish is different.
I wish I could share
some of what I have with others...
I have an energy that is contagious,
passion for what I do.
I have fun interacting, teaching, and learning.
working hard to engage, inspire, and reach.
As a student told me last week,
I am persistent--finding new ways for them to "get" it,
never giving up.

Last year, I  joked saying we would watch paint dry,
when asked what we were doing tomorrow.
A student gave an excited, "REALLY??!!"
Energy and passion are contagious--
and need to be spread up and down
the halls of our schools.

To help others
be present,
and to be willing to say,
"I don't know. Let's find out."

I might miss a detail,
get lost in a moment,
talk too quickly,
get behind on some things,
accumulate clutter,
forget to follow up,
but I am who I am
becoming comfortable in my own shoes,
filling them out.

Today a friend said to me,
"You have fun. I need to have more fun."
And now my wish is no longer
for me but for her.
Not for her to be me,
though she might enjoy it for a day,
but to find who she needs to be
comfortable in her own shoes,
as she discovers what ignites her passion
and fills her own shoes.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Stop Now

After stopping by my blog on too many a grading evening, I just toppled over. Well, I put my head down on my desk while I tried to regain my strength. I stood up to get a paper for a student and saw compassion and concern in the eyes of the 6th graders. Then, someone from the back said, "Mrs. Woodall, you need to go home." I mean too many late nights and early mornings, and I nearly fell out in class.

My husband tells me I should sleep more. My coworkers tell me I should sleep more. My students tell me I should sleep more. Until my body just stops, I keep pushing myself and don't listen to any of the people who can see what I'm doing to myself.

When I made it to the doctor, he tested me for strep, the flu, and pneumonia. All came back negative. I think my body was just resounding an emphatic, "Stop now!"

That was last Tuesday, so needless to say, I didn't make it through the school day, I hardly made it to the doctor, I didn't blog, I didn't make it my conferences--all I did was crash and burn.

Now I'm back. I have been up since 4:30 AM, and it is now 11:05. I have nothing of literary merit to write. I just am writing to say. "Here I am. Now I'm going to bed."

Thanks for making me write, even when it's not much. You Slicers are an awesome group.

Goodnight. I must stop now.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Stopping by My Blog on a Grading Evening

      With my sincerest apologies to Robert Frost for what I've done to his snowy woods.

This stack of papers here they grow
Using  this rubric sure is slow
Cannot sleep, disturbing the flow
Grades due so soon, oh no.
I’d like to end my grading here   
And let this assessment just go.

You must think my assessment queer
To grade until morning is near.
I’ve had all of this Common Core rubric I can take
The grades are not too good I fear.

I reassess and give my head a shake
And ask if this grade is a mistake.   
The only sound’s the  pen’s sweep   
Common Core writing is not cake.

Some with analysis so deep.   
Yet so many more still to reach,  
And papers to go before I re-teach,   
And papers to go before I re-teach.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Around the Dial

My favorite local FM station is shutting down, becoming sports' talk radio. Just what we need more talk radio. Here is my poem for Dave FM. I will miss them.

Radio tunes to iTunes,
Pandora's box opened--
I should have Spotified
the waves of change.
FM now XM,
the dial,
I find nothing.