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Sunday, January 02, 2011

A sneak peek at Learn Me Gooder

OK, I will admit that I have not done much work on my intended sequel to Learn Me Good over this holiday break. In my defense, I had PLENTY of other stuff to keep me busy. Grading, painting, cleaning, eating, sleeping, visiting (both!) families.

But, I did want to get at least a little bit done, so I buckled down and got some stuff down on paper today. And I thought as a nice little motivator for myself, and maybe even as a little treat for those who actually like my writing, that I would share.

So here is a rough (ROUGH!) draft of a chapter from Learn Me Gooder that made ME giggle. Please don't count off for spelling, grammar, or the fact that it makes no reference to the Heat Pumps gang. All that will be taken care of later. But I WOULD love to hear feedback from anyone who has some.

Date: Wednesday, October 28, 2009

To: Fred Bommerson

From: Jack Woodson

Subject: A Jack of all grades

Hey Fred,

Ah, the blessings of ADHD. I'm speaking, of course, of Big Jack, and the wonderful world of Shangri-La-La he lives in. This is a boy who routinely asks me after tests, “Is a 50 good?” To which I have to routinely bite my tongue and NOT reply, “No, Jack, in fact, it’s so bad that I’m pretty sure it’s going to start raining soon because a 50 usually makes the angels cry.”

Today, I had to keep him and a couple of others in my room during PE because they did not finish their work during class time. As is so often the case, Big Jack weighed the options of labeling fractions vs. playing rocket ship with his pencils, and the fractions were found wanting.

Thus, we were both in my room when Mrs. Fitzgerald's voice suddenly boomed in from the PA system. She must not have realized that I had kids in the room, because she didn't Publicly Address me as "Mr. Woodson," but rather used my first name.

So when he heard, "Jack, are you there?" coming from on high, Big Jack immediately looked up and responded, "Yes!"

It wouldn't surprise me at all if he actually thought God was speaking directly to him, rescuing him from having to finish his work.

"Did I do good, God?"

Last Friday, I gave a test that was taken from the math textbook. These chapter tests often have a question or two that requires a written explanation in addition to, or in place of, a numerical answer. These questions usually just serve to show how poorly the kids can express themselves in written English. Because of this, I tend to make those extra credit questions.

On Friday’s test, the final question read, “A cake has been cut into 40 pieces. Is it reasonable to say that this is enough cake for 32 people?”

If the kids said anything to the extent that yes, it is reasonable because there are more pieces of cake than there are people, I gave them 1 point extra credit. If they expressed their rationale even more clearly, I gave them 2 points.

Big Jack wrote, “No, it does not make sense because the people would get 1 piece only and sometimes I want to eat 2 pieces of cake or 3.”

I gave the lad 2 extra credit points! It wasn’t at all the answer I was looking for, but he did explain his thinking quite clearly, and being a cake-lover myself, I can’t exactly disagree with him.

Maybe there IS a thread of logic somewhere in there after all!

Talk to you later,

High Jack


TeacherFromTN said...

Love it! Reminds me of some of the "creative" answers my little Asperger Syndrome fellow would write on his math tests last year....completely wrong, but they were hilarious and made perfect sense to him!

Can't wait for the book!

Mister Teacher said...

Sometimes those are the best answers!

Candy said...

I'm with Jack! I totally want 2 pieces of cake too sometimes and in that case, it might not be enough because that's 2 of us right there! I'd say give that kid THREE extra credit points (and I have kid with newly diagnosed ADHD and I totally snorted at the pencil rockets!

Mike in Texas said...

Ahh, the long awaited, greatly anticipated sequel to Learn Me Good.