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Saturday, April 21, 2007

Cleanup on aisle three

This past week was an incredibly long one. On Monday, I was already tired from a lack of sleep, and then it just so happened to be the last instructional day before the math TAKS, so there was that pressure of trying to squeeze in as much knowledge as possible around the cracks in my students' brains.

Tuesday, while my kids were scratching their heads and racking their brains for the test, I was in Ms. Five's fifth-grade classroom all day long, working with her kids, since they weren't taking a TAKS that day.

On Wednesday, eight fifth-graders came down to my classroom to take the reading TAKS retest, since they didn't pass the first time. Mrs. Educator also had eight students in her room. The third graders who hadn't passed the first time were taking the retest in other rooms down the hall. So Wednesday was a day of being on my feet all day long, doing nothing but watching the kids work on their tests.

On Thursday, I was back in Ms. Five's room to monitor her class while they took the science TAKS. They are a well behaved group, but it certainly made for another long day.

As long as my week was, it could have been a lot worse. Poor Mrs. Educator had a MUCH worse week in her classroom. Three days out of five this week, somebody barfed in her room.

One of our little girls had leg surgery a couple of weeks ago and came to school on Monday in a wheelchair. She also had some brand new medication that she needed to take; medication that apparently did not sit well with her. Sometime before nine o'clock on Monday morning, Mrs. Educator came over to tell me the news that her class had been evacuated due to massive hurling. Not a pretty thought.

On Wednesday, one of the fifth-graders taking the TAKS in her room clearly had a bad case of the nerves, and he spewed chunks all over his test booklet, desk, and the surrounding floor. She had to move her testing group into the vacant room next to mine. And if you happened to read my brother's comment on my last posting, he wasn't exaggerating about the procedure involved when a kid pukes on his test. In addition to cleaning up the mess in the room, someone had to come in and clean off the test booklet as much as possible, and secure the test booklet in a plastic baggie to be sent back down to Austin with the rest of the test materials. CSI-style, as Phin says. I guess they did everything except dust the vomit for prints.

On Friday, our sweet little ralfer from Monday returned to school, this time with a walker instead of a wheelchair. She took the TAKS in the morning with a couple of other kids that had missed test day, and she was with us in Mrs. Educator's room in the afternoon when we were having our popcorn party and watching Aladdin. She was actually sleeping in the back of the room. I was sitting in the back enjoying the antics of Genie, Carpet, and Abu when I suddenly heard a sound that made me think someone had knocked a drink over on the table. I looked over, only to see that poor little A had completed the hat trick for the week (the Vom-hat trick, if you will).

I can only hope that next week puts people back in better health. And barring that, that they continue to review their stomach contents somewhere OTHER than my room...


Mrs. T said...

Yuck. I do not do well with the chunks, even when they belong to my own offspring. I guarantee you'll be having phantome puke smells in your room for the rest of the year.

Anonymous said...

I feel for the person who had to document all of this with the testing info. Amazing how our lives revolve around the state tests.

rookie teacher said...

Wow ... what a long week!!

Anonymous said...

When childrens' anxiety reaches puke-level, we know things have gotten utterly and completely out-of-whack. There seems to be no way to protect children from this pressure. Are parents allowed to withdraw their children? Or does that lower the school score .. so is seriously discouraged by admin.

It is any wonder the number of youth on anti-depressants is enourmous.

Still waiting waiting for your book. Looking for a pick-me-up these days ... better not make me cry some more!!!!!

IMC Guy said...

I think G.W. should have had to clean off the test!

Just think about stressful this testing is going to be when the "bar" gets raised even more and school are truly fighting to raise AYP and doing everything they can to get all of those little bodies proficient.

Glad to know you survived!