So far this year has been the year of weird schedules. Late start schedule for “faculty collaboration.” That’s on Mondays. Two extended second period schedules for tours of the school and to drill the school handbook. (Luckily, with a second period prep, I was able to avoid the ugliness.) Extended Homie Base Schedule for the fire and lockdown drill. Last week it was 45 (instead of 35) minute lunch schedule all week long after the Monday holiday. This was to reward them for increasing our API by the required amount. (The possibility of which isn’t any better than a crapshoot from year to year. But we can pat ourselves on the back and pretend that our “increased focus” on testing last year was the reason we jumped so much. Actually a crapshoot is a better bet than our test scores going up every year, especially if you bet Don’t Pass.) I’m thinking test scores went up either because we taught them such mad erasing skills or because we walked around and hounded them so much to try their best. Also the incoming seventh graders played no part in the test score increase, but they’re not complaining about the extra ten minutes.

Anyway, it leaves me almost three weeks in, and just finishing chapter one of  The Outsiders today. Talk about laggy. Only one class got to the “chased a couple of junior high kids across a field” line in chapter two, as Dally and the boys head to the drive-in. I always love to pause at that line. A few laugh right away, because they get it. But for most it takes until I say,

“That would be you guys.”

D’oh. They identify so quickly and completely with Pony and Co. that they quickly forget that they would not be homies with this crew, and Dally probably would have taken their lunch money already.

(Insert yearly pitch to read the book aloud to them, and to not do the dag-burned “popcorn” method. Never. Ever,)

Even so, they’re already begging for more on a daily basis. And it’s one of the few things that my boy hasn’t already read, so I got even him going on.

Speaking of the boy… The girl who sits in front of him in English (I get him for the video elective this quarter too) didn’t believe him when he told her that he was my son. That was last week, so today as I was handing out vocab sheets, I nodded at her and said,

“Oh yeah, that is my boy behind you.”

Even though the kid next to him backed him, she still thought it was some elaborate practical joke we were playing on her.”

“You guys have this all set up. Just to trick me.”

Wish I had that much time.

Actually that’s a good idea. Pick a kid and arrange with him to pretend to be…

Maybe next year, I’ll pretend the boy has a brother.