Second Week – Finito!

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Wow, two weeks down – 38 to go! Not that I’m counting…

So the 2nd week of school deemed to be fruitful. Although we had a few vomiters here and there throughout the school, we were able to really get some routines solidified.  It was great getting our new technology program started. This year our school received a Federal grant for technology and assessment purposes.  All students in 3rd and 4th grades are working on Reading and Math for 30 minutes each a day.  The program seemed to be quite a hit this week. The program is currently our means for assessing the kids. Hopefully it will give us some accurate baselines.

I have to say, the vote we took at the end of last school year to change our Friday schedule to end at 2:20pm has so far been amazingly wonderful! We are all smiles as Friday approaches of course.

A few teachers from my school and couple former co-workers went for a nice little Happy Hour event in my neighborhood amongst the crazy Midtown East UN Assembly days.  The streets have been full of Secret Service vehicles, men with machine guns and headsets, streets barricaded and closed for the transport of President Obama.  Strangely, the travel route for the President happens to be on my street, so it feels a little prison-like when I walk out my building at this time. No worries though, I can handle it a few days a year.

Stay tuned for the completion of Week 3!

First Week – Done!

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So… the first full week of school is over… How was it? Besides the fact that getting up at 6am every day is now going to be the norm, it was fine. That’s all. Just fine. Nothing exciting, only a couple of kids that will most likely be the cause of a few headaches, it was just ok.

We have some new things going on this year, but I’m just going to take everything in stride. All the deadlines, all the new programs, all the last minute schedule changes, all the complaining. This year I will not let my workout schedule suffer or become abandoned because it is too cold or because I am too tired.

I will be get my grad work done when I have time and try not to obsess over the deducted marks I think are unfair – which right now I am stewing over! Brett tells me that it really doesn’t make a difference in the end. I try to think that way, but I obsess over these things and always strive for the perfect grade… What can I say? I’m anal about these things.

So I end the somewhat mundane week with a nice time at happy hour with a few teacher friends at an Upper East Side pub. A great way to end a 5 day work week.

Here’s to the second week. Cheers teacher friends!

Rosh Hashanah Long Weekend

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So the first week of school has come and gone. But was it really the first week? Well, Tuesday – I called out sick and Wednesday was our first day with our new classes. Thursday and Friday schools were closed for the Jewish holiday Rosh Hashanah. What a great week!

While many NYC teachers may have been spending their four days off, relaxing and preparing themselves for the first REAL full week of school – my friend, Alaa and I decide to go on a road trip. Well, not a car road trip, but a train-bus-ferry road trip for a New England experience. So, I left my husband at home and went for a girl’s weekend away.

Here was our itinerary:

9:07am – Metro North Train (MTA) from Grand Central Station to New Haven, Connecticut. Arriving about 11am, we decide we should go see the Yale Campus, thinking it is probably as pristine and gorgeous as Harvard. Not so. While the campus area is lovely, and the old buildings are immaculate, the surrounding area felt a little ghetto to me. We caught a few good photos, which will follow soon.

2:04pm – Amtrak to Providence, Rhode Island. Providence was not a destination, it was merely a transfer point. From there we took the RIPTA bus to Newport, a little harbor town with much charm. Upon arriving in Newport abou 6pm, we find the town to be already a little sleepy. Unfortuntely the tours to the mansions were already finished for the day, which part of what we were hoping to see. We were a little disappointed, but we had work to do. On this trip, we did not book any hotels. With the passing of Labor Day, we figured finding hotels for decent rates would be a cinch. And… we pretty right! You can also score a good rate if you ask for the “Teacher Discount”… Even though most places did not have teacher rates, they gave us cheaper rates, just to have someone in the rooms. We were satisfied with that. We got a very floral room at America’s Cup Inn. Super nice guy got us a super cheap room, and fed us a great continental breakfast in the morning. Our evening was spent walking  along the wharf and Thames Street. Since this was the first weekend in off season, the locals checked us out, wondering what we were doing there in our summery attire. The wharf was still busy with some tourists and locals, and as we wondered along Thames Street, we enjoyed looking at the little shops and pubs. We ate a great dinner the locals love called Scales and Shells. Great atmosphere, and decent food. Day one was full, and we slumbered well that night.

Stay tuned for Day 2 – Martha’s Vineyard

Day 2:

After a little morning wandering in Newport we take a taxi to New Bedford, MA to catch the ferry to Martha’s Vineyard. While waiting in the ferry terminal, I noticed a face I’ve seen before. An 80’s movie star, a Broadway actor… That’s right Matthew Modine. Alaa tried to tell me it wasn’t him, but I knew it was. He was on the same ferry heading to Martha’s Vineyard on this random off-peak Friday.

Anyway, when we arrived on the island, we loved what we saw. Prisitine gingerbread houses, cute main street, and many scooter rentals! This was our goal on the island: to rent a scooter. Our initial impression of the rental guy was not great, but we got over it once we were on the road! We had a fabulous time puttering along on the highway, stopping at Sharky’s in Edgartown – where parts of Jaws was filmed apparently. Didn’t know! We froze our butts off, but the scootering around was definitely worth it.

6:04pm We took the ferry back to the mainland, but this time to Hyannis Cape Cod. Arriving in Hyannis we got a little worried we wouldn’t find a place considering the first place we went to was full. So we walked up the road and found a place advertising the cleanest rooms for low rates. Upon walking in the office, we were greeted warmly by Rob, who gave us a cheap rate to fill a room. Of course we asked for the “Teacher Rate”, half joking, mostly not! You’d be surprised the great deals you can get when you mention you are a teacher!! So Rob let us choose our room – a big, yet somewhat tacky country style room. We were a little overdosed on the flower theme from the night before at America’s Cup Inn at Newport, but we couldn’t turn down the low rate, large room, and super nice guy in the office.

Stay tuned for Day 3: Cape Cod and Boston…

First Day

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While all my teacher friends went back for “Teacher Day” today, I am at home sick. Who would have thought that taking too much Vitamin C in a 24 hour period would cause my body to spiral out of control. I was trying to defeat the head cold that was coming on, and ended up with a whole other problem. I won’t get into gory details, but let’s say I spent Labor Day, my last official day of summer, mostly laying down, not moving around much. You’d think spending 14 hours in bed would help, but it didn’t completely kick what was going on.

So this morning at 6:45am, I had to call in sick on the first day of the 2010-2011 school year. I’m hoping this is my only sick day. I never take days off. But today, my body was too unpredictable once again, to go out in public. The shower was difficult for me; forget sitting in meetings, talking, and working in my classroom. And too bad whole problem had to be the same day my friend got us free Yankee tickets. No Yankee game for me tonight…

Stay Healthy