Friday, March 19, 2010

You Say Improvements, I Say Gypped

Introducing the completely unrelated picture feature to Lacey's Totally Awesome Blog!

I actually tend to find demotivational posters more motivational than motivational posters. Like this one - I certainly don't want robots doing my job. Firstly, (and obviously) if the robots are doing it, then I'm not getting paid - NOT. COOL. Secondly, if the robots are teaching our children . . . well, we're probably just a few steps away from the robots taking over the world. And I, for one, feel I would have a better chance during the Zombie Apocalypse.

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaanyway. So a couple of weeks ago . . . almost a month, actually . . . I was reading with one of the fourth graders (the same one who asked if I was alive during the Civil War, for those that care). She was reading the first book of the Babysitter's Club. Which was kind of awesome because I remember waaaaaaay back when, when those were the coolest books on the planet. And also on the lengthy banned-at-Lacey's-house-books list, although the Babysitter's Little Sister books were okay. So instead of knowing the whole series by heart I only read about a dozen or so. And loved them, just like every tween in America back in the day. Anyway, we get to the part where they're having their first ever club meeting and it talks about the phone reciever, at which point I'm asked what a phone reciever is. I get about as far as "it's the part of the phone that . . . oh . . . wait . . . crap." Then I spent about five minutes spluttering around trying to explain what a reciever is before remembering that there was an actual, genuine, corded land-line phone sitting on the desk at the front of the room. So I explain that all phones used to be like that. Which of course is dubbed as "weird" by today's fourth graders.

So ever since then I've been compiling a sort of mental list of all the awesome stuff I did in school that just doesn't seem to exist anymore - so sad!

~ Purple photocopies. I've been trying to remember what that machine was called for three weeks now, and it's bugging the crap out of me - help!!! But I'm sure you know what I mean - remember how the copies would all come out varied, and if you were lucky you got one that looked as crisp and clean as if it was printed off a laser printer, but heaven help you if you ended up with one form the part of the batch that got smeared into unreadability! Teachers should totally still print out worksheets in purple. Just because homework is so much more awesome when it's purple. :-)

~ The only use for computers is playing games! Dude - I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOVED computer time in elementary school. I mean, sure they were educational games and stuff, but they were sooooooo epically fantabulous. The muncher creature that ate the numbers when you solved the problem? Best super hero ever. I remember some science-based games where you had to figure out why fish were dying in a lake - the acid levels were rising. Or something like that. One of my favorites was this one where you were Lewis and Clark and you controlled their expedition and what they found and who they talked to ad if they made it to the coast and back. So cool! And let's be honest, is there anything that qualifies as more of an epic win than old school Oregon Trail? I think not. Give me green oxen and wagon "walking" on the left of the screen over fancy hunting graphics any day!

~ On that note, how about knowing more about computers than your teacher did. I don't know about everyone else, but I certainly did. That might have something do to with the fact that I seriously don't remember a time when my family didn't own a computer. Which, I know, is on the less common side for my generation. And then in the advanced program I was in during elementary we worked a lot with computers, mostly making slide shows and such. Yep, I was a Power Point whiz before Power Point was cool. Before it even existed, actually. We used Macs, and I have absolutely no recollection of what the program was called . . . but I knew how to use it! It was such a big deal to get a computer in our classroom in sixth grade, but I was pretty much the only one who ever used it.

~ Actually playing at recess. I mean, I'm all for safety and all that good stuff, but sometimes it's surprising that kids aren't encased in bubble wrap before they go outside. Guess what folks? Cuts heal! So do broken bones! (disclaimer: spoken by someone who's never broken a bone.)

~ Homework = if you don't finish it in class, finish it at home. Good grief, homework club lasts for an hour after school gets out, and at least half the time that's not enough time to finish! So, so not right on so many levels. You want to know why kids are fat? Because by the time they finish their mountains of homework it's to dark to go outside and play so of course they play video games instead!! Seriously, what Phd holding moron came to the conclusion that giving kids four times as much homework as they had when they were a kid would be good for them?

~ FILMSTRIPS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Filmstrip days were the best! So novel, so exciting, so . . . technologically advanced! :-) And those rare times when you watched a movie on one of those super old school projectors where you watched the wheels spinning? Holy cow, that was the teacher bringing out the big guns!And remember how it was such a privilege to be the one who got to flip the picture when the tape beeped if the teacher felt like taking a nap . . . I mean, grading some papers . . . instead of flipping the filmstrip? That, my friends, was quite the coveted position of power. Except for when the geniuses at the filmstrip company messed up and forgot a beep so you got off by a picture. Or when you weren't paying attention so you accidentally flipped it back to the last picture instead of the next one. Or was that just me? :-)

~ Edible lunches. Okay, I haven't seen what they serve at Ellis, but I found this a few days ago, and I'm officially scared. Granted, school cafeterias are not expected to serve five star cuisine, but really? I don't think vending machines at school as much of a problem as these lunches are. Now I have to admit that the school lunches I ate/saw in Utah were not particularly impressive, but I still have fond memories of lunches in IF. Everything was made fresh at the junior high and sent to the elementary schools - which was really convenient for my school, since it was just across the street. Everything was pretty tasty (except that nasty turkey fricasse or whatever it was - eeww!) and to this day I sometimes daydream about the molasses cookies when I'm craving sweets. Seriously, if I could find that recipe somewhere I would die perfectly happy. And the choices in junior high!!! I usually went through the hoagie line, but there was always fruit included. This would also be where I learned to put potato chips on my sandwich to make it crunchy - YUM! And sometimes I went to the salad bar and loaded down my plate with a mountain of kiwi (KIWI!!!!!!! In a school cafeteria!!!!!!) and pineapple and a small-ish chef salad that I built myself. *sigh* I hope they still do that up there. That, ladies and gentlemen, is what school lunch should be. So sad that education seems to always be the first budget to get cut. (And that is as close as I'm getting to touching that one with a ten-foot pole.)

~ Textbooks. Not really sure about this one, but the second graders have those desks that are comprised of a couple of open shelves that you just shove stuff into - and can I just say, those ones are sooo much more effective at eating important things like pencils . . . and reports . . . ) - and from what I've seen there are no textbooks in any of those kids' desks. No math books, science books, reading books . . . so weird. This one I have no explanation for. Can someone fill me in?

Moral of the story: I miss school. Being a student, I mean. If it was in any way feasible, affordable, and profitable I would totally be a professional student. Honestly, it's really the only thing I'm good at.

P. ost S. cript
So I totally should have saved the Goofy Movie video for today. Oh well. Instead, here's some cuteness overload. (warning: put down the jelly beans, or you just might go into a diabetic coma.)


  1. Dittos; they smelled so good.

    In most rooms there is a section of cubbies somewhere that they keep all their textbooks so that they don't get shoved into the desk and ruined. Although in 2nd grade they might actually not have them; they probably just use worksheets.

  2. Hey, now that makes sense! :-)

  3. Also spoken like someone who doesn't have kids who may get hurt!

  4. True, but that was also the stance that my parents took. More of a "suck it up, walk it off" attitude than "encase the world in foam" one. Not saying that's what yours is, just making a comparison. ;-)

  5. mimeograph- I used to make those copies. And I know how to make overheads with out a printer, and dry mount and laminate without machines. AND I can load a film projector and film strip and slides AND make the slides with nothing but a magazine page and slide film and a dark room.

    Am I awsome or what?

  6. Yep, Sandra, you are awsome. dad

  7. I agree. I wish I could do all that!

  8. Holy Hannah! Your mom banned The Babysitter's Club? How? Why? My mom drew the line at books that had pictures of people holding bloody, dripping swords on the cover. What was there to be offended about in the babysitter's club?

  9. Are these the molasses cookies of which you speak?

  10. Great merciful crap, I believe they are!! You are my hero!!!