Prattling on – First day as a sub

I told some of the five classes I “taught” yesterday at Harbor City International that I hadn’t subbed in a class since 1983. That got their attention. One student said. “My parents weren’t even born then.”

My first challenge among many was to figure out how the get the computer on the desk to project its images on the white board in the front of the class. Both of the charter schools have functioning systems like this and the Red Plan put one in every classroom. Sadly, shortly before Trump hating women caught me up in their snare and dumped me from the School Board, all our Red Plan White Boards were becoming dysfunctional.

I ended my last Reader column by mentioning I had no great desire to teach in a class with 40 Covid starved kids because I was not “foolhardy.” That would be a Duluth Public School middle and high school classroom. Classrooms without whiteboards.

I think I could manage because in my time I never had them. I only dreamed about having some similar sort of way to project things that would expand learning beyond my lecture or a dull classroom textbook. I had to get by on my wits. I could do it again and with another forty years worth of tricks and experience behind me.

Although the first couple periods saw me fussing with a very different lesson plan by the end of the day I divined that these programs make it easy to direct kids like cows in corrals in stockyards. What I could do if I programmed my own class activities!!!

I got an email later in the day notifying me that the other charter had gotten my application to sub. I’d finished submitting it the evening before with a couple references from the superintendents of schools from neighboring school districts. My next challenge will be to figure how to get to Northstar Academy now that I belong to a one-car-family. As for the Duluth School District……that’s where I’d really like to test the waters. In one of those forty kid classrooms……but I’ve still got a lot of organizing in my office to do.

Organizing my office? Yes I’ve explained before how keeping track of the papers I refuse to throw away preoccupy me… fact they prompted me to turn our attic into my office. You see part of what will keep me alive until I reach the age of 100 is reading about my forbears and writing about them. I make reference to it in the Reader column I finished last night after a 52 minute hike back to our house after school let out. Because I had to turn in paperwork and chat with Gary Glass my old Let Duluth Vote ally who was there helping a science teacher work on his master’s degree I got to the Transportation Depot to late to hop on bus number 13 to get to my place. I saw it wouldn’t arrive for 15 minutes and convinced myself I could get home almost as fast if I walked what I was thinking I could cover in half an hour. It took me 52 minutes walking at a very brisk pace that probably accounted for my waking up with leg cramps in the middle of the night. I’ll just use the bus from now on.

On my hike back my French penpal, also a retired teacher, was eager to hear about my first day of class. I stuck to english as I hiked a mile a minute and explained I had to watch out for traffic until I got home. Actually she told me to be careful. I snapped some pictures along the way to show off Downtown Duluth before dusk as she often shoots pictures of the parts of France that she is walking through. Halfway home I stopped to pick up the latest Reader at Burrito Union to take home with me. My penpal would have to wait until the leg cramps woke me up at 1 to get my full report on my first day as a sub. I didn’t want to get back in bed until I was sure my leg cramp medication kicked in. After sending her the highlights, probably an hour before she herself woke I spent an hour on Duolingo practicing my French.


By the way this is too low grade a post to proof read when I have so many other things on my plate. Are there Typos? Tough beans!!!!

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