Mountain made o’ trouble

I had the most rigoddamndiculous day. Teaching in Georgia is like climbing a mountain make of knives. Let’s set the scene. First off, it is cold. Not mega cold, but like spring in Anchorage cold. Workable in jackets. Inside,we have woodstoves. Normally, the smoke from these cauldrons goes up flimsy aluminum pipes, to a larger flimsy aluminum pipe outside. Today, for whatever reason, smoke was POURING from the mouth of the woodstoves. Normally I expect a certain level of smokiness in the classroom, but everyone was covering their eyes and coughing and choking. I went outside to inspect the pipes. The classroom chimneys all feed into a series of chimneys (lulz) which vent the smoke out above the school, or would, had many of the connecting L-pieces not rusted and dropped into the snowmelt. Smoke came out from the classroom tubes and would blow right back in through the windows. Yes. I tried to bang one back into place and the rest of the pipe fell off the wall. I started rounding the kids up to go outside. My co-teacher refused to come because it was too cold for her.

So there you have it. Imagine, if you will, that without books, pencils, or paper, your task is to manage and instruct a class of antsy fourth graders who do not speak english, without anyone to translate instructions,  and btw you’re outside because the school is on fire. This was literally my day.

We did a sort of unison hokey-pokey, naming body parts and moving them up, in, out, down, etc. We found sticks and slugs and ponds and wet things and dry things. We found rocks and a bathroom and trees and learned about our heads and our hands. We ran. We jumped. We did a LOT of jumping. On the way home today, two little girls found me and yelled “I am singing!”

In otherwords: teaching in Georgia is a total goddamned success. Love this place.


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