I really do believe that one of the secrets to happiness in life is to be aware of one’s blessings and be grateful.
This year at school is off to such a good start. As I mentioned, I have a student teacher, and she’s top-notch. She’s energetic and excited and has great ideas. It’s fun to be around a teacher just starting out, plus my grading load goes down by two classes. How nice is that? My first hour seniors and my two-hour ACE block are both packed with truly sweet kids. My seniors are pretty enthusiastic about our current book, Misery by Stephen King. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that we didn’t have books (long story) for almost two weeks, so I’d been reading out loud. That meant they were more or less forced to get into the first third of the book, so now that they have their own copies they’re hooked and just have to know how it all ends. (If you’ve ever read Misery, you’ll know how apropos that is.) My ACE kids consist of some I had last year as sophomores, a few very cool transfer kids, and a number I’m just getting to know. One is the third kid I’ve had from a particular family, and every one of them has managed to find that soft spot in my heart.
I’m also fortunate to have the principal that I do. In ACE we have small group meetings every Monday where we talk about teen issues and get to know the kids better on a personal level. I had four transfer students in my group who all said they were having a hard time finding a way to fit in. After all, they’re juniors, and they left all their friends at their old schools. This year, school-wide, we have a lot of junior and senior choice-enrolment kids—kids who don’t live in our attendance area. (In Colorado students can attend any public school in the state free of charge, which gives them more choices.) When I told Frank how my choice-enrolment kids were feeling, he arranged a meeting with them and the student body president to figure out ways to help bridge the gap. Today at the assembly, he reminded all the kids to reach out and had the new sophomores, juniors, and seniors stand and be cheered for. Like my student teacher said, there are very few principals who would be that responsive. I know my new kids were happily pleased to have the principal and student body president talk to them and really care how they felt.
In the meantime, I have resubmitted rewrites of my latest historical novel to my agent. My critique group and I agree with my agent that first person was the better choice for this one. Now, I’m tinkering with the “speculative fiction” piece I turned in a while ago. Fun times.
The gloomy spot is that my daughter is singin’ the blues about a love gone wrong, so I’ll keep this brief and she and I will go back to our Buffy the Vampire Slayer fest we started this afternoon. Hey, a boyfriend that breaks up with you is nothing compared to a boyfriend you have to send to hell just as he gets his soul restored, you know?