Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Boiling at Back to School Night

One thing I've added to my teaching arsenal this year is a... sweat towel.

Seriously. I now bring a sweat towel into work so that I don't drip on kids when I'm standing over them. It can get real hot up there.

Today, though, might have been the worst day ever. The temperature in my classroom hit 96, and that's not even factoring in the humidity. I also wore a fairly nice dress shirt today, because it was Back to School night, so that made me even hotter. I was pretty miserable all day, feeling light-headed at times and just uncomfortable at others. Water was at a premium and it wasn't particularly cold when it was available.

As soon as my 10th period left, I stripped down to an undershirt and put my head down on my desk. I still had several hours to go - I left the school at around 8 o'clock - and knew that I needed to keep my shirt as fresh as possible for the parents. I also had to run across the city to the Baltimore Teachers' Union to register for my silly re-certification classes in the interim.

I did make it back in time, and had an okay time talking to the parents. I wasn't lying when I told them it was one of my favorite days of the year; I really like interacting with parents. I'm already becoming attached to a few students, and seeing from where they come - quickly and informally - adds to the narrative I write about them in my head. I also was very truthful with some of the cheesy things that I said, things like, "The students at this school inspire me every day," a line that I heard coming out of my mouth about five times tonight to the five different groups of parents I talked to, but, nonetheless, was true. Another little gem of fortune cookie filler was, "My expectations are very high, but my hopes are even higher." Yes, I actually said this, without a touch of irony. Ha! I'm the cheesiest teacher in the world.

A couple things that struck me:

1. Did a mother really let her son text throughout my entire ten-minute presentation? Really?

2. I'm so glad I don't teach elementary. Little siblings running around through much of the night... ugh.

I felt worse and worse as the heat remained and the day wore out. At the end of it all, a colleague came up to me and said, "Oh my god, (Epiph), I have never, ever seen you so red." That was my hint to get out of there. I came home, stripped, took a cold shower, drank about a gallon of ice water, and am starting to feel normalized. Tomorrow, it's supposed to go up to 94. I'm wearing a loose, moisture-free polo golf shirt. Hopefully, the day is a little easier to get through.

1 comment:

Linda said...

You know the rule in schools - it's either:

Too hot

or

Too cold