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I wrote another poem last night called Tinted Windows.  I’m writing all this stuff about being masked, hiding, who am I, being exposed or being cold. These writings cry ISSUES! LOL! But who the hell doesn’t have them man, ya know? I had another dream last night about a similar subject which I will never discuss because it’s beyond impossible and people would run in the other direction no doubt.  I think this is where these poems are coming from. I don’t know.

Three weeks of school left. THANK GOD! I have to put together this mini teacher portfolio for my Monday night class. I’m kinda freakin about it. I mean I am sure with research I can come up with 6-11 lesson plans but . . . Sometimes I don’t have the confidence I should in myself. I HAVE to do it so I know it will get done  but how good it will be is another question.

I miss doing theatre. I haven’t had time for singing lessons or rehearsals and performing. That part of me feels empty. At least my words are flowing with my pen.

 For now I leave you with this holiday tune – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yXQViqx6GMY

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Hello!

It’s been a LONG time. Did you ever hear that phrase “I’m up to my ass in elephants?” That’s me! I have been so busy with my internship, grading massive amounts of papers because of the size of the classrooms, classes, and getting our show revised and edited. Thank goodness I do not have to be in it. I am looking forward to seeing it come to life. I wasn’t sure at first. More and more feedback started to trickle in. Some good and some not so good. We never got to go through process with the play so we had to do a quick revision. It seems to be more conversational now. Of course we allow the actors to have some creative input. When this over we are going to take a playwriting class in New York. I would also like to take a character development workshop.

I am getting observed next week by my supervisor in the classroom I am interning in. My cooperating teacher wants me to do a Revise & Edit lesson. I started the powerpoint tonight. I should probably give it a rest but I think my nerves are a little on edge. I am sitting here now trying to unwind listening to music on the computer. I am listening to Stairway to Heaven. I am not a Zaeppelin fan. I just love this song.  There is a lot to it – metaphors and such.

I promise to write more!


Anyone watch The Singoff last season? NOTA is awesome! – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MG0PiVtqLxM I LOVE accapella! There CD comes out in November. This is great too – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WbdPeSnXvUY

I started tweaking my play from my undergrad. I had to modernize it big time. I have 5 pages of dialogue right now. I know the concept I want to use. I just have to figure out what I am going to do and what direction I am going to go in.

I taught my third lesson yesterday at the high school I was put in. I have to get my act together with time management. I am so used to doing these damn mock lessons for Kean, that I find I am planning 20-25 minute lessons and then leaving the rest of the period for the activity. I don’t feel comfortable doing that. My cooperating teacher is really great though. She tells not to beat myself up since this is still new to me. Just because someone tells you not to beat yourself up, doesn’t mean you don’t continue to. I am the same way with theater. If I can’t get a song down or dance routine down the first time I do it, I lose my mind. That’s just me. I have that Uncle Ben’s Rice mentality – Instant! By the way, yesterday’s Quote of the Day was from a male student in the 7th period class who when I gave the activity just kind of sat there so I said “Hey too cool for school, you going to write something down or what?” So he says, “I would rather just type it at home. I am not a pre-draft kinda guy.” ALRIGHTY THEN! Too funny. I love the 7th period kids.  

Please tell me why a brand new campus building wouldn’t have computers in the classroom? Of course now I have to borrow a lap top from the professor to do my mock lesson. It’s quite embarrassing. My husband and I are just not in the position to spend money on a lap top right now. Maybe when I get a job but not while I am on unemployment. I swear these things only happen to me. It’s bad enough I am still having flashbacks from the Spring semester. Whatever. What’s going to be is going to be. I have to go back to the scale of 1 to 10 – 10 being losing my father. Where does not having a lap top really fall on that scale? I don’t want to have to go begging for a higher grade though. I’ve already done that once. That’s when my humility surfaces. I hate acting like a big mush. Did you ever notice when you put your heart on your sleeve you regret it later? I guess I am having business flashback where “Kevin” told my husband and I on numerous occasions that I wear my emotions on my sleeve. UGH! I HATE doing that. That’s a character trait I can’t seem to get rid of. Who really appreciates that except your parents and your spouse?

(I would like to wish a Happy 37th Birthday to a friend of 23 years. She knows who she is – Now we can get FV and choose your Kia or my Santa Fe to cruise in. What mid 30s? We are 21 over and over every year! Those were the days of  M. Gizz! :-0)


Did you ever want something for yourself so badly? I love writing. That is why I started this blog. It wasn’t just for the catharsis. It was because I just love to write. I think I mentioned a few blogs back that my husband and I were writing a one-act play and that it was going to be performed. We finished it. After many changes and editing it numerous times, we finished it. I uploaded it on the government copyright page today. I am so happy and so excited. I have waited so long for something like this. On the night it is performed, Oct 30, 2010, I am going to be extremely giddy – kinda like Scrooge at the end of a Christmas Carol after he had his epiphany. I am sure not everyone is going to like it. Just the fact that we completed a one-act play makes me feel great. Something I wrote with my husband is going to be performed. Unreal. I actually started writing a book about the topic of the play. We took that concept and made the one-act. We are thinking about expanding it to a full length play or a screenplay. We have no experience in screenplays but I know I am certainly open to learning. I’m sure my husband is too. Another option is just to keep the book idea. I don’t know but I am psyched! I have always wanted to have my name recognized for something. I never wanted to be just another person in society working a regular job. This has made my journey to this point all the more worth the hurdles.

On September 8, I started interning at the high school I was assigned to. My cooperating teacher is great. She’s very helpful and supportive. I have already taught two lessons. It went pretty well. I had some of my own criticisms about time management. That’s just the flaw of this perfectionist attitude I have developed. I’m tired of failing at things, ya know?

I have also started two other classes. The computer class I have, honestly, I hate it. The professor is inserting lessons on binary numbers. I asked him point-blank what this had to do with teaching English in a classroom. Lisa and Math – HUGE oxymoron.  I do not do math. I hate math. I’m sorry all you mathematicians. I give you credit because I have ZERO patience for it. My other class – so far so good. I’ve had this professor before. I think I mentioned about her class the prior semester where I bombed her lesson plan project. Now in the class, I go and just keep my mouth shut. I know better now because I know her. I am going to do my best to do good lessons. We have to do two literature lesson plans. I wish I could use the lessons I already taught at the high school! She picked the book though. Bummer! I definitely understand why it is more uncomfortable to perform in front of your peers than it is in front of the room with the kids. In the classroom, I brought my personality and a little of the “Prospect Park – Lisa Jersey” swagger. It worked. Being in front of my peers doing mock lessons, eh, not real comfortable. Oh well. I have no choice.


Has anyone seen this? – http://wonderwall.msn.com/tv/snooki-charges-200000-to-walk-an-events-red-carpet-1572458.story?gt1=28135 – Good Lord, REALLY? Not to sound like a hater but . . .

On another note, my husband and I are writing a one-act that is being performed on October 30 at Pianos Bar & Grill in Bloomfield, NJ. I think we are going to call it The Switch or Identity Crisis. It’s part of a show called Midnite Stories: Behind the Bar Edition (A “Twilight Zone” Type anthology). I am quite excited! To see something come alive for the first time that my husband and I created makes my adrenaline flow.  It’s for a group called Mysterical Players that we are a part of. I’ve been doing their PR. Check the group out on Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Mysterical-Players/274445179919?ref=ts

Back to the journey. Our relationship with Melissa and Frank was touch and go there for a while. Thank God that was rectified.

I didn’t think life and grief could bother someone as much as it botherd me. It’s hard everytime you are down to keep getting kicked. We had to do what we had to do to get our heads straight – more me though. I felt like the killjoy. I had to get the fog cleared from my head because the next semester at school was starting not long after the 1 year anniversary of my father’s death. Also at that time, I was playing one of the lead roles (The Queen) in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at a local theater in the area. I have to admit, with help from some friends that were actors/actresses, I came into my own. I worked with my singing teacher every week to get me prepared for my solos I had to sing. That boosted my self-esteem IMMENSELY. It was such a great experience. I had little kids coming up to me, some afraid, some not, after the show to take pictures. I had parents coming up to me telling me how great I did. I even had a parent recognize me in church. It was an incredible moment every time. 

The second semester was interesting. I had to travel to two schools for observations. Of course the commute was not close but I didn’t mind. I like driving. I can blast my tunes and sing at the top of my lungs. I know what you are thinking – This woman is a goof ball! – Yeah, pretty much! You either love me or hate me I guess. I am fine with either. In addition to the observations I had a Saturday class that was so boring. I think I had this same professor when I was at William Paterson. He basically sat in a chair at the front of the room and just talked. He would make us do rinky dink group work during class but otherwise I was taking so many notes. UGH! How can you teach like that in general but on Saturday to boot! An extra-large french vanilla couldn’t stop me from wanting to stick pins in my eyes! It was terrible. The professor made us meet with him at the end of the semester and asked what could be changed about the course. Being the person I am, of course I told him. I told him I was all about progressive education and there had to be more than lecturing. This was also the professor that kept looking at my chest while I was talking in that final meeting. I wanted to snap my fingers and whistle and be like “Yo man, my eyes are up here!” I hope I saved the next bunch of poor souls that took him.

My Monday night class was great. The teacher was cool of course with me. We discussed Giants tickets because she was a season ticket holder too. Don’t ask me why teachers take such a liking to me. Maybe because I go into the classroom and just do what I have to do and be myself. She is a first grade teacher during the day so by the time she got to us, she was exhausted which worked to our benefit. She taught the lesson and basically had us out at a reasonable time. Never did we leave at 10:15 p.m. I loved that considering I had like a 50 minute commute home.

I put myself in several predicaments in my Wednesday class. My first set of papers I bombed. The second lesson we had to do, I bombed. Being singled out by all my colleagues in the math field really annoyed me. I was already cranky because it was 100 degrees in the room. The math folk did their “mock” lesson and chose to incessantly annoy me by calling on me because I’m not a math person. COME ON MAN!!!! Lisa “Jersey” was slowly surfacing. I was going to explode. Thank God we were in the classroom. I bit my tongue as much as it would let me. I’m lucky I didn’t bleed out all over from how hard I was biting. By the time I presented my lesson, I wasn’t feeling it. I didn’t want to do it. I hated that we were in an old school classroom and I didn’t have a laptop. I had to use the blackboard. I am not a blackboard teacher. I like using Powerpoint. The set up they had in there, one would have asked, “Did you get a free toaster with this too?” It was like reaching into the cracker jack box and pulling out the prize – Woo hoo an old school set up! UGH! I irked my professor. I irked myself. I got thrown under the bus in front of my classmates. It was terrible. I was told that it didn’t seem like I liked writing at all. That is the WORST thing you can say to me. It was like she stuck a steel knife in my gut. That bothered me A LOT. It bothered me that I let her down. In fact, it was all I could think about for days. I even journaled about it. I can’t tell you the last time I had picked up a journal before that. Thank God I got a do over on my papers at least. I was able to pick the grades up. I hate Cs. No Cs yet on my transcript *KNOCK ON WOOD*

I had another class that was half of a semester. It was a one credit course. The professor was cool. I did well in that class too.

I couldn’t wait for the semester to be over. I was looking forward to the summer even though I had to take Summer I and Summer II classes. When you are on unemployment, they want to rush you through everything and make you jump through hoops.


After that phone call I was beyond livid. We went back up to the bank. I started raising my voice to “Barbara” and telling her what the Assistant Director of the SBA said. It was one of those “Uh Uh” moments. She reverted back to how the business isnt making any money. At that point, all I heard was noise – think of the teacher voice on Charlie Brown. That was a dead end obvioulsy.

Months passed and our financial situation got worse. We got a phone call from our realtor. She told us she had a local woman interested in the gym and wanted to know if I could drop her off an extra key and some paperwork. Unlike “Kevin” I  provided a REAL member number list. A little background on this prospective buyer – Think Jersey Shore (tv show) looking with a British accent, what guys would call a “bangin bod,” long nails polished, a lot of makeup, VERY rich and possibly an entire bottle of perfume.  We will call her “Lizzy.” Early on our attorney called her a “tire kicker” and that is exactly what she turned out to be. She kept us on the hook for nine months. Every phone call, whether we spoke to her or her husband, they wanted more and more information and more time. The last phone call we received from them they wanted us to wait longer because they wanted to refinance their house to get extra money for the purchase. Can you even believe it? People this is my life. You can’t make this up. WHY ME? She told us they needed two months and that they wanted us to hold membership steady at the number it was at which at that point I think was about 185 members. We held steady for the two months and never heard from them. Membership started declining even more again due to members losing their jobs or what have you. When we called to get a status update and told her we had the membership steady for two months and never heard from her and how membership declined more, there was dead silence on the other end of the phone. After the silence, she again asked us to wait longer. We gave her a deadline and said if we didn’t hear from her we would have to shut the gym down because we just couldn’t do it on our end anymore.

In addition to the stress of a failing business and a strained marriage, my father was in and out of the hospital from a heart attack, additional chest pains, getting a stent put in, and bleeding. Could it possibly have gotten any worse? It did. I had a pet cockatiel for 14 years. She fell off her perch and started twitching her head. We took her to the vet and the poor bird was a nervous wreck shaking. Not sure if you know anything about cockateils but they get very attached to their owners and don’t like being in strange places. The vet gave us antibiotics that had to be administered with an eye dropper like tool. I hate vets. No offense to any out there. It’s just I have friends that have many animals and every time they took their pets to vets, it wasn’t long after that the pets passed away. My bird was never 100% again but she was ok for a while.

“Lizzy”, my father, and my bird situations happened from the end of 2007 on through almost the end of 2008. Again I said it couldn’t get any worse. Yet another domino fell. On Novemebr 15, 2008 I received a phone call from my full-time job telling me they were laying people off due to the lack of work because of the floundering economy. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? This is happening again NOW?  While I was still working for the company, our department was taken over by a young woman, who honestly had no clue about what we did in this specific aspect. My old boss got a promotion and went to another department. A few times this new woman suggested stuff and it was like “uh yeah we already were doing that.” Anyone that is a woman and works for a woman knows how catty some of them can be especially if they feel threatened because you actually know more than they do and they are supposed to be the boss. In any case, I was once again being layed off in the midst of a failing business. Thank God for unemployment. It was at that time my husband and I had a long talk and said we had enough. That’s when we decided we weren’t waiting for the tire kicker anymore and to now more than ever get control over this.

On the same day I lost my job, I registered for the Praxis II Exam to become an English Teacher. My test was scheduled for a Saturday in March 2009. Years ago when I wasn’t really into the profession I took the test twice because I was working at the first company in another department where I was getting up at 3 a.m. and I needed to get out because it was killing me.  The two times I took the test I didn’t get the score I needed. When I took the test the first two times, I was still at that “I deserve- wooo is me” phase so I really didn’t care if I passed it or not.