Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Challenges

I got the opportunity to teach high school today. It was math. I am pretty much useless in anything above algebra, so I was happy when most of the classes simply began working quietly. Sure there was a low buz around the room, but most seemed to be on task, so I let it go.

At one point, though, one of the kids asked me why I did not have a better grasp of math. I said that I chose history for its remarkable, and, honestly, noble lack of higher math.

He wanted to know how much history I knew. He wanted to ask me a question about history. I usually tell kids that history is such a big subject that it keeps us historians humble. We can only KNOW a very small portion of history, and even then, it is a relatively loose "KNOW." I went ahead and played ball though, figuring, how much can a high schooler know? If I were a betting man, I would have cleaned the table. He asked me a simple one. "How did WWI begin?" Of course, my "simple" might not be everyone else's "simple." Obviously, the political, economic, and social underpinnings of WWI were very complicated, but in a nutshell, I handed him a simple narrative, which he took wide-eyed. He said, "We just talked about it in class this morning...and you got it!!" I should hope so, I have been in school long enough. Also, I read that stuff for fun. Kinda like shooting fish in a barrel...with a 16" naval gun...can't miss.

I had some time to look on-line while they did their work. I got a job for tomorrow and am filled up for the week now. I also read a fun short book on-line about the Chrysler plant and it's role in aircraft engine production during WWII...hmmm, obviously I AM a hardcore historian, if that's fun.

I got home and collapsed in my chair for an hour...I think I am in the midst of a cold. Of course, my colds only truly show themselves at night. I caught this one in the act and have been hitting it with Airborne vitamins and have found some cold meds that help. I always have trouble sleeping with a cold, no matter how good I feel during the day. Last night, I woke up about 45 minutes after going to bed. Could not sleep. I was experiencing drainage...probably more than you want to know. Still, I took another dose of cold meds and was able to get back to sleep by 330AM. Six O'clock came WAYYYYYY too early. Tonight I have sore muscles and my sinuses seem to be filling with viscous fluid...perhaps the consistency of molasses...maybe cold honey, but without the sweets. Oh, the joys of teaching!

1 comment:

Cora said...

sorry you are sick :0(
love that you can stump the kids they think they are so smart at 15.