Tuesday, August 28, 2012

The Beginning - Again

   I lost my way. But I'm back now. 
   Don't you feel better? 
   Part of the reason I want to re-start writing is that I miss it. 
   Another part is the book Feed, an incredible book by Mira Grant. Actually, it's the first of a trilogy about zombies. It's also part conspiracy theory investigation by a group of bloggers, who have become the watchdogs of a digital world. 
   The stories are about zombies, yes, but are really about so much more: human reaction to fear, human desire to control the natural world, corruption of power, human relationships.
   I'm mid-way through the second book: Deadline, and as soon I'm done writing, I'm getting back to the book!
   Tomorrow is also the official teacher start to the new school year. 
   While a pick-axe through the eyeball is preferable to sitting through a day-long set of meetings, the opening day is going to be most curious. 
   In fact, the whole school year promises to be very interesting. 
   First, obviously, Act 10, which stripped teacher unions of any power other than salary bargaining, puts a lot of power in district and administrator's hands. I'm going to be very curious how this power is used. 
   Second, the district - and Wisconsin - adopted the Common Core Standards for both English (Literacy) and math. The CCS promotes getting deeper into literacy skills than our usual curriculum. 
   What's going to be interesting is the testing that will come from CCS. Allegedly, the state is going to use tests based on the CCS. We'll see what those look like. 
   Third, as always, I'm grateful for my colleagues, particularly Marzion - our 11th year together - and Clint Weishaar, my seventh grade Literacy colleague. 
   Those two keep me sane (relatively speaking), and I get to truly collaborate with Clint to create some pretty cool environments for the kids. 
   And finally, the kids. It was so much fun to meet them today and see kids from last year run up to hug us. 
   Today's story was the tiny crocodiles that escaped from the science room. I was checking the lockers to make sure none had burrowed into them. 
   No one had seen any of them. 

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