An important assignment inflicted upon all of my Intro to Journalism cherubs before I unleash them and their reporters' notebooks on an unsuspecting public, is the Room 215 Press Conference. The students gather at the feet of their mentor ~ that would be moi ~ and ask questions.
The goal is to see if they ask enough questions of depth and quality to write a half-way decent story about yours truly. And also a dynamite way to check their note-taking abilities, since I'm the one they're interviewing.
Well, I slogged through a whole class set this weekend (did I mention that I have 67 "budding scribes," crammed into two classes, this year? Dang those budget cuts!), and I was pleasantly surprised. Yes, there were a few mis-steps, to say the least ~ apparently one child thinks I have twin girls, 3 years apart and another referred to me as "elderly and wise" ~ but for the most part, I liked what I saw.
My newbies are shaping up nicely. Here are a few of the "gems," though, that could be filed under the headline, "Bloopers and Other Strange Stuff That High School Students Say." I've included my responses in italics. And no, I didn't write all of these smart-assed replies on the kids' papers. Only some of them.
- "She is the proud mother of twin girls, who are only three years apart in age." Well, they do look alike when they're wearing their cheeseheads!
- "Mrs. Scribe says she keeps teaching because she enjoys it. 'It's the money and the power, too,' she said." You betcha! Teaching is quite the lucrative profession, I'd say.
- "She's goofy, but at the same time she gets work done." With Principal Man and his Merry Band of Idiots around, sometimes that's the only way to accomplish anything.
- "The way she teaches is just really frustrating." That's a quote from one of my AP Lang students. BTW, he has a "D+" in my class.
- "She fears she will become irrelevant." Huh?
- "She's got the big picture in life." And I've also got a Room with a View.
- "She looks at the class and says, 'I'm like a big, dumb giant'." Or a Gangsta. Take your pick.
- "All of the things that teachers usually do go out the window with Mrs. Scribe." Hmmmmmmm...I thought it was only my students who go out the window?
- "Mrs. Scribe likes to mix things up. 'I don't rock the boat too much, just a little to keep it interesting." Shake it like a polaroid picture.
- "Nothing you do in high school could really affect the rest of your life unless you really, really, really screw up." And yes, that's a direct quote. I say stuff like that all the time!