It’s been quite a week. Me and the little kids have had something of a stomach problem. Nothing so bad anybody missed school, but a lot of yuckiness and I spent all of one day after school in bed with a little bit of a fever. I’m fine now, but the little ones are still battling it.
We start benchmark testing at school this week. Because I don’t teach any core classes I don’t have to do end-of-instruction tests, which is both good and bad. EOI tests are prepared for the teacher, but the teacher doesn’t get to know what’s on the EOI until a couple of weeks before the test date. I have to write my own benchmarks, or finals, and that’s time consuming because I have to attach PASS skills to each question. My Foundations of English I class has an 80-question test; Science Fiction has 60 questions; Non-fiction only has 10. Ordinarily I’d never do a 10-question test, especially when that test is worth a ridiculous 40 percent of the students’ final grade, but this class is an exception. They should all pass the test easily enough.
My Foundations class did the telephone interview with Deb LeBlanc on Thursday. It went better than expected, really. Most of the kids got into it. A couple of the boys chased each other around the room, throwing plastic beads at each other, but most of the others listened and asked good questions. They’ll get a surprise later this week, courtesy of Deb. (Hannah, if you’re reading this, don’t tell!) They also get a test on horror fiction on Monday.
I had to pay up on a bit with a couple of students in Science Fiction this week. The class just wasn’t reading Fahrenheit 451, and I was a little upset with them. So two girls bet me they could read almost the entire book in one evening. I said if they could, and passed an online test, I’d buy them 44 oz drinks from Sonic. I’d never heard of a strawberry banana Sprite, and it sure looked nasty. The other one got a cherry vanilla Dr Pepper.
In other news, I just mailed Amara’s Prayer to the agent who showed interest in it at the OWFI conference. Cross something for me. This agency represents David Maine, whose books are similar in theme to Amara, so if anybody can sell it, I think this agent can.