Second Semester

Today sure seemed to go by really fast.  The second semester has begun at school, so the kids are learning about Reconstruction and we’re moving on through History.  The cool thing about teaching History is that you can judge how much of the school year is left based on what you are teaching.  Our course starts with colonization and ends with World War II.  So the end doesn’t seem that far off.

At the same time I start my post-graduate classes this week.  So far I haven’t been able to log onto the class, but the university had no such problem logging onto my bank account to get payment for said class.  This series of classes is going to run through August, so I won’t have as carefree a summer as I did last year, but there you go.

It’s funny to be already thinking of summer, but to tell the truth, I started thinking about it in September.

Summer is Coming

Whoop!  Whoop!  I have just 13 days of work left for the year and then the summertime is here.  Just 11 of those are days with kids and 3 of them are half days for Exams.  I still have a ton of stuff to do of course.  We still have a yearbook party I have to plan.  I still have to write semester exams.  I still have to teach for about five more days.  But then, I’m a full-time author.

I’ve been trying to catch up on my backlog and was doing pretty good at it for the past week or so, but then yesterday, I didn’t get anything written.  Yesterday was the when we were supposed to reenact the Battle of Gettysburg at school and there was a ton of stuff to do for that.  Then it ended up getting cancelled due to unhealthy air– smoke from California wild fires mostly.  Anyway, I’m going to get back on track again this weekend.

I’m still shooting for the end of June for His Robot Wife: Patience is a Virtue.  I’ll keep you updated here of course.

Too Many Irons in the Fire

Things really seem to be conspiring to keep me from writing.  I’m spending more and more time away from school working on lessons.  I definitely have more homework than the kids do.  In addition, we’re working on a reenactment battle of Gettysburg, which has its 150 anniversary this year.  I was out in the wind all day maneuvering the troops around– you have to give it to those Civil War soldiers.  You should see my kids trying to perform a “right wheel march!”  If that wasn’t enough, I’ve only got three weeks until the deadline for your yearbook.  I’ve got twenty kids working on it with me, but I seem to be the only one stressing out about it.  I don’t know if that’s because they’re confident or just don’t give a crap.  When I got home this evening, I just passed out in my comfy chair.  Anyway, I’ve got about two hours till bedtime, so I’m going to try and get a few pages done.

Falling Behind

Wow.  Looking back at my notes, I see that this time last month, I was about sixty days ahead of my writing goal.  Now I’m about two weeks behind.  This has been a trying time in may day job and it’s not only taking time from my writing, but it’s dragging me down mentally and emotionally so much that when I do have time, I can’t quite get into it.  Those of you who have never worked as a teacher do not and cannot know the amount of daily pressure that teachers are under.  It sounds like I’m whining– and I guess I am a bit.  The events of the past week just illustrate one layer of the stress that goes along with the job.

Teachers are expected to be educators, counselors, clergy, parents, social workers, and friends.  They are expected to care for their students as if they were their own children, to provide for the students what their parents can’t provide, and to lay down their lives if necessary to protect them.  Most teachers know this and are ready to do so.  On the other hand, teachers are criticized and blamed for every problem that their students have, whether it is low test scores or bullying.  My cardiologist, wondering why my blood pressure was so high asked me “is your job stressful?”  I said, “You have no idea.  You’re only a heart surgeon.”

Anyway, three more school days and I’ll be out for two Winter Vacation weeks.  Hopefully I’ll be able to write something then.

Astrid Maxxim for Schools

You may have noticed a new tab on the main page entitled “Astrid Maxxim for Schools.”  I plan to offer Astrid Maxxim and her Amazing Hoverbikes free (for the electronic ebook) to any teachers and schools who would like to use it.  I will also have a new digest-size paper edition available at cost for teachers and schools.  I plan to also offer a downloadable study guide and more.

I haven’t yet finalized all the details, but if you are a teacher or know one, who would like to use this book for your students either as a class assignment or a reading option for your students, please feel free to contact me.  Astrid Maxxim and her Amazing Hoverbike has a Flesch-Kindaid Reading Level of 5.0.

Floating in the Ether

It’s funny what you find hidden in the depths of the Internet.  I was trolling around looking for some Nevada history and found this on the Las Vegas Sun website.  The description is as follows:

Students at B. Mahlon Brown Junior High School spend part of their class time Oct. 13 listening to representatives from different political parties. The activity was used to enlighten students about the differences between parties and teach them the importance of politics. They will be holding a school-wide vote prior to the elections to see how their opinions compare to those of the nation.

The guy standing on the stairs (the fat one with the white pants and no tie) is me.  It says Oct. 13, but it doesn’t say what year.  Judging by how much hair I had left at the time, I would say it’s 2008.