There are a few things I wanted to do before exams started this semester; however, I’m NOT a planner and barely ever pay attention to the calendar, so of course I didn’t realize the year was over until…well…it was over! I really should have taken the time to write my students a letter/note/message…something to let them know what I would remember about each of them and what I hope they took away from our time together. I know how elementary-school that sounds, but I haven’t given awards out since last Fall, and I’m feeling disconnected from “connections” if that makes any sense.

Yes, I know that I’ve talked poorly about my silly students, but, despite their laziness in turning in assignments, many of them were very sweet kids. And, I remember when a teacher did take the time to send me a postcard telling me how she enjoyed being my teacher, blah, blah, blah….it was just one of those things that made me smile every time I read it.

The other thing I wanted to do was create a soundtrack for our time together. I really thought I’d have time to do that, but I’m not sure what happened there…again, probably has something to do with me NOT looking at the calendar….oh, and they were making book trailers, too, so I didn’t have class time. Thanks goodness I cleared that up!!

So, in light of my problems, here it is:

13 Songs for the 2010-2011 Sophomores…..

1)  For Your Entertainment — Adam Lambert….This class was almost totally out of control when school started. They laughed at EVERYTHING, even when they knew they were failing. I’m not even sure if we had the “honeymoon” period that most school years start with…so I had to turn up the heat of my teacheryness!! Adam’s lyrics say: “it’s about to get rough for you ……I’m here for you entertainment,,,,,Oh, I bet you thought that I was soft and sweet
‘Ya thought an angel swept you off ya feet…..But I’m about to turn up the heat…I’m here for your entertainment”

It wasn’t long before I realized where I was headed….

2) Highway to Hell — AC/DC ….Umm….self explanatory! haha….

3) Don’t Matter — Akon…..This is a total love song, but I love it to describe some of my harder-to-wrangle-in students. Sometimes you’re just in a love-hate relationship….They want you to love them and see through the fight they’re putting up…find that goodness that’s lurking beneath. Akon sings: “Nobody wants to see us together…We gonna fight…It don’t matter, ’cause I got you.” And we fought. A lot! But then they’d get hooked on a book or write a poem or tell a funny story, and our differences really didn’t matter. It was my job to create as many relationships as I could to try to help them become more literate.

4) If I Had a Million Dollars — Bare Naked Ladies…..Umm….because I’d have soooooo retired this year!! hahahahahaaha…..

5) Saturday Night — Bay City Rollers….Because nobody in this sophomore class can spell!! I think they’re all out partying instead of studying, and NOT just on Saturday night! And, seriously, who DIDN’T learn to spell “Saturday” by singing this song? Heck, I still sing it every time I have to spell it!

6) Trouble — Elvis…..My man has a song for every situation, and this on is not different. His song is actually what we call in the business, a “theme” song….haha…”if you’re looking for trouble…you’ve come to the right place. If you’re looking for trouble, just look at my face…” LOVE IT!!

7) I Gotta Feeling — Black-Eyed Peas….I think I sang this song every single time I gave an assignment….I’d say, “Your paper should be finished, so go ahead and take it out…we need to revise…but “I gotta feeling….” and all the little children would laugh because they knew my feeling was right, and they had NOT completed their assignment!!! My feelings were rarely about “good nights” OR good children…how sad!

8 ) Three Little Birds — Bob Marley….These students had absolutely no worries. About anything! Seriously, they knew that the teachers couldn’t “give” them lower than a 60 for a grading period, their parents wouldn’t really do anything to punish them for poor school performance, and if they did get in trouble, they could just hang out or sleep in ISS. No worries.

9) Keep On the Sunny Side — The Carter Family….In November and March, we started blogging. In April, we started writing poetry–LOTS of poetry. You never know what you’re going to learn about a student when you ask him/her to write about personal interests; however, because this group really has no filters, they were pretty free about the tragedies and losses that pervaded their lives. I liked to play this song sometimes just so they could hear some goodness.

10) Gypsies, Tramps, and Theives –Cher….One student, Chris, had an obsession with gypsies. Everything he wrote, silly stories he told, books he read all had something to do with gypsies or that weird Borat character….One of my favorite kids EVER!!! But, I played this song a lot when I tried to teach them to use commas….it helped some. Or maybe they just liked to hear the song!

11) Will You Still Love Me? — Chicago…..My poor little students just want somebody to listen to them and love them. It was very hard this year to love many of them. There were too may hooligans….but the ones who wanted to learn and showed up most every day and made me laugh and tried in class–those are the ones who you wish you could have just a little more time with. But there were always those students who’d leave class with a “Love ya, Mrs. McCabe.” Of course they were usually the ones I wanted to smack! haha…

12) Hard to Say I’m Sorry — Chicago…I received several “I’m sorry” letters this year….from a student who was using dip in class to two students who were begging for a passing grade when they didn’t deserve it (They both wrote a 5 page apology letter!!). But I’m also sorry for that one student who failed. I feel so bad that I couldn’t get through to him. He never returned any of the make-up assignments I gave him and slept after he took my exam, refusing to do any other work. Somehow, though, I feel like it’s my fault if he drops out of school like I heard his brother did. Then I might cry.

13) Should’ve Known Better — The Beatles….Most of my students decided that it was easier to love me and do what I say rather than keep up that crappy fighting. There are many students who I’ll miss….and who will definitely live in INFAMY in my memory! hahaa….

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