Thursday, September 29, 2005

did anyone see oprah yesterday?

because my students seem to think that i look like the girl who was on the show yesterday.

and now i'm curious to see what she looks like.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005


yesterday, one of my students walked into class looking a little distraught. this is the conversation that ensued:

Me: Collin, you look like you're walking to your death.
Collin: I know, Ms. Reed.
Me: Why? Chemistry isn't that bad, is it?
Collin: No. But my parents just bought me a brand new BMW 530.
Me: Go sit down. You will receive no sympathy from me after starting a complaint with that statement.
Colln: But if I don't do good in this class they might take it away.
Me: Um, how are you doing in English?
Collin: Huh?
Me: Never mind....
Collin: So how's my grade?
Me: Well, you didn't turn in your lab report. And you didn't study for your last quiz. Did you study for the quiz you have today?
Collin: No....
Me: Now, if you would like to donate that brand-new BMW to the poor Chemistry teacher help fun, then maybe we can talk.
Collin: Ms. Reed, I'm not giving you my car!
Me: Then go sit down. When you're ready to reconsider my offer, let me know.

Yes, I take bribes.

Monday, September 26, 2005

i can't believe this!

I've gotten used to students changing the subject so that I'll talk about something besides Chemistry. And if they make me laugh, it works really well. But today they tried this:

Chris: Ms. Reed, I didn't think I was going to like you the first day of class.
Rachel: Yeah. Me, either.
Chris: I thought you were going to be MEAN.
Casey: I liked you because you dressed cute.
Christina: Hehe. Hehe. (That's about the most I can ever get out of her)
Chris: But you're not mean. You're pretty nice now! Why did you have to be mean at first?

I am SO not mean. I'm nice. So so nice.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

selective hearing

Sometimes I make the mistake of forgetting that teenagers have selective hearing. So when you tell them that you'll sing for them if they get through all of the material you had planned for that day, all they hear is "I'll sing at the end of class." And then you will never hear the end of it. And every day they will remind you that you still need to sing for them. And that they would really like for you to freestyle rap.

And when you tell them one time three weeks ago that they get to do a fire lab, and then remind them every single day that they have a quiz on Tuesday, and write it on the board and on the assignment sheet you handed out to them, they will still come into class on Tuesday surprised that you're handing out a quiz. But they will still ask every single day when they get to do the fire lab you mentioned once three weeks ago.

And when you tell them specifically to read the directions to their quiz, because on the directions you write "if you do not know the answer, simply put your name in the blank and you will receive full credit for the question" because you know perfectly well that nobody reads anything you give them and nobody listens to anything you tell them, every single student except for three still fails the quiz. But at least they now read the directions.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

dynamite girl

It's homecoming week at my school. The theme is "Superheroes". So the students assigned each faculty member a superhero that fits them the best that they are supposed to "be" all week.

I am Dynamite Girl. And this is what I found about Dynamite girl:

Gee, I'm flattered....

Monday, September 19, 2005

yeah, right

Today one of my students asked me if I would go to the homecoming dance with him.

My reply: Yeah, right.

And then four different boys asked me for my phone number. So they can ask for help on their lab reports.

My reply: Yeah, right.

And then they asked if I would consider giving multiple-choice tests. Or at least consider making the class a little easier.

My reply: Yeah, right.

Friday, September 16, 2005

shout it out

I think my voice has increased several decibels since I started teaching. Because my classroom is huge, my students are loud, and my voice is (was) soft. And so I spend eight hours of my day shouting so that when my students don't listen to me at least they can't use the "I couldn't hear you" excuse. It forces them to be a little more creative and come up with reasons like "well, Ms. Reed, your shirt is really cool today, and I was thinking about how much I liked it so I missed your explanation of our lab." And I love flattery and firmly believe that cleverness should be rewarded, so I repeat myself yet again.

But I've started to notice that I now feel the need to shout everything I say. It doesn't even feel like I'm shouting. I yelled at a man at the mall last week when he asked me how I was. And then he looked confused because I was smiling and telling him how fantastic I am, but relayed the information in a terrifyingly loud voice. And then I yelled at the man who opened a dressing room for me at the Gap. And at Tony, the student that I ran into at Kroger.

So the conclusion I've come to is that I need a vacation. A quiet one during which I can whisper and still be heard. And have my own personal chef (aka my mom) so that I eat something better than peanut M&M's for dinner. And get more than 4 hours of sleep a night. And have my own personal maid (aka my mom) to wash my clothes and clean up after me. And buy me nice things. And I think that's all I need.


Yesterday, I received five separate compliments on my shoes. All from five separate male students.

And I'm pretty sure that one of those compliments involved the word "hot". Although he muttered that under his breath when he thought I was no longer listening.

I'm pretty sure I won't be wearing those shoes again any time soon.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Dear Mom,

Mother: "1. Mother - Kasey Chambers"

Listen to this song. It makes me think of you.

And make sure your speakers are plugged in. And turned on.


Dear side-by-side washer/dryer combination that my parents want to buy me for my birthday,

I'm really excited to meet you. So excited, in fact, that I haven't done any laundry in the past three weeks because I just want to save it all up for you. And when I run out of clean anything, I simply buy more of that anything. For you. Because I know that you can't wait to wash my clothes even more than I can't wait for you to wash my clothes.

Do you think I can make it to November without washing anything? I'm willing to bet I can.


Thursday, September 08, 2005

another conversation during chemistry

Rachel: Hey, Ms. Reed. My mom thinks you're really smart. She was talking about you last night after she met you.
Me: Hey, I think your mom's smart!

dear boy who followed me home from church on sunday,

Please don't do that. Thanks.



Dear parents I met at parent's night last night,

Thank you for only pointing out once how young I look.

Ms. Reed


Dear bed,

I'm sorry I haven't been able to spend much quality time with you lately. I promise we can hang out a lot this weekend. But absence makes the heart grow fonder.

All my love,


Dear food that requires any preparation whatsover,

I'm sorry, but I just don't think our relationship is working out. You are way too demanding and simply ask for too much of my time. It makes me feel smothered.



Dear teacher who scared my entire physics class and made one girl cry,

I did not invite you into my classroom. You are terrifying to freshmen. We had to have a mini therapy session after you left. Thanks a lot.

Ms. Reed



Happy birthday. It's been a fantastic year.

All my Love,


Wednesday, September 07, 2005

a chemistry lesson

by Ms. Reed

Me: As we demonstrated yesterday in our lab, Dalton's atomic theory states that atoms cannot be created or destroyed.
Ryan: Is that really true?
Me: Yes.
Ryan: And all matter is composed of atoms?
Me: Yes, that's the first statement from Dalton's theory.
Ryan: So people are made of atoms?
Me: Yes.
Ryan: Okay, well, what about when babies grow? Are atoms made then?
Me: Nope.
Ryan: Well, then, where do babies come from?

Followed by much laughter from his classmates. And from me. Luckily he's a good sport.

Me: Well, Ryan, that is a discussion for another time.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

i'm a teacher?

If any of my physics students have wondered whether I'm really old enough to be teaching high school, I think they got their answer yesterday.

When I told them they could play the last ten minutes of class if somebody got up and danced in front of the whole class. Which somebody did.

And when I let the boys compete to see who could chug the most Sprite. And had a great conversation with the girls about shoe shopping.

But in my defense, I made sure they had all finished their work. And they're way ahead of the other classes because they're so darned smart. And always pay attention during class.

And I at least made the boys say "excuse me" when they belched after their chugging contest. And I would not allow belching to become a part of the contest.

I have things under control. Totally.

people like me...

James: (Only joking, of course. And thinking he's really funny, as usual.) I tried to get Brittany to stop calling me, but she won't. I keep hanging out with her cause I'm such a nice person.
BJ: James, if that's the truth, you are a complete fool.

Friend #2: I never edit my thoughts. For anybody. I always say whatever I think. But after knowing you for only five minutes, I'm already careful about what I say around you. And that speaks worlds about your character.

And this is why I love my friends.