Saturday, February 20, 2010

Saturday's List: The Worst of Trailer High

This week's list:  the bad things about going to school in trailers.
Post tornado, our high school is comprised of nine trailers situated around parts of the old school that weren't affected.  (Well, not destroyed anyway!)  The kitchen, weight room, multipurpose room (cafagymatorium), the music wing, an Agriculture building, and a four classroom technology building were still standing.  A gymnasium underwent major renovation and was just opened for use less than a month ago.  The rest of us are housed in trailers which are spread out on parts of three city blocks.

The worst part of going to school this way?

*We can go weeks without seeing some colleagues.  I don't know some of the new ones very well.

*Sidewalks are hallways, complete with fences for the construction.  (Prison like)  I miss hallways:  the signs, the kids, and the ability to easily locate a student between classes.  I never know what is going on because there are no hall signs to remind me.  I miss music classes Christmas caroling the halls, spirit signs, art projects on display, seeing all the spirit week costumes, and knowing who the friends are or who the couples are.  I miss the occasional hug from some upperclassman who misses the old teacher. (Heck, I miss seeing the haircuts and outfits!)

*The office is located in a small house.  The principals and counselor each have a bedroom.  The secretaries and all office equipment are located in the "great" room.  Kitchen cabinets are full of supplies. It is awful.  There is no room to gather for a cup of coffee around the communal pot, no chance to visit with our secretaries without all the student aides hearing every word, and no place to celebrate staff birthdays. 

*Our trailers shake when a train goes by or when construction is digging.  Who am I kidding?  Our trailers shake when some kid is jiggling his/her leg in a desk three rows over.

*There are some upperclassmen that I never see. Ever.  I forget that they are still in school.  Sad.

*During this cold weather, I rarely see any students but the ones in my classes.

*Mud.  It is everywhere.  A custodian and his sidewalk 4 wheeler "spun out" in a mud hole by my trailer.  The railings to our deck, sides of our trailers, and a trash can are coated in dried mud. 

*No lockers.  Kids try to leave things (in an already cramped classroom) so they don't have to carry it in their backpacks.  I can't blame them. 

*No parking.  The work zones have wiped out a lot of it.  I've given up and walk. 

*Have I mentioned mud?!  We track it in on our carpets. Kids remove their shoes if they are too muddy, and then you have the door surrounded by muddy shoes. 

*I never feel like wearing professional clothes to school.  Dress pants end up muddy.  Dress shoes end up muddy and ruined.  When will I feel like a professional again?

It is easy to find things to dislike about Trailer High, but that isn't the whole story.  Don't feel too sorry for us.  We're lucky to have a school, and amazingly--there are things we are going to miss when we are back in a building.  And that is a list for another Saturday!

Happy Weekend!


Gayle said...

When I read this list and see the things you miss, I see what a really great teacher you are! I'm hoping that the construction goes faster than expected.

2Thinks said...

Chin up Mrs. E, the sun is shining here and sun dries up mud. Perhaps the sun will come out tomorrow....oh, too much rehearsing lines with Fash, I guess. ("Annie" plays first weekend in March, getting close!)

It's not every teacher who can write a book about "trailer school"- you've got the edge...

Steve Gravano said...

I love the puppy! Having a dog is something special.
On another note, this past Thursday night at 10:30 the furnace at an local elementary school caught fire. There was a gas line under the school which was ignited and exploded. It leveled the school. Everyone was very thankful this happened when the school was empty. School was on break, and the night custodial staff did not have to report in.
No one was hurt.
Tomorrow, the children and teachers will attend the middle school till something is worked out. As if teaching and learning weren't difficult enough.

kate said...

I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


Debbie said...

No matter how difficult the day is - you have that adorable little puppy to go home too - that will have to bring sunshine to you on a gloomy day.