Journal: 16 March

Originally posted to Ask The Fire, 19 March 2018

We're so close to opening night. My legs are 90% bruises and I haven't seen my palms without blue paint in years.

So today was another assembly! It's sports awards (for only a few sports, I think?) so I was mainly lost. My period 1 cooperating teacher is back for the first day from an illness, and she read the week schedule wrong, preparing for the wrong class. We made a Scenes from a Hat activity for her drama students on the spot and they seemed to like it a lot.

After the first break, I got to see my first music class in a while. Here, classroom music is still taught through high school, which is great–older students, even non-musical ones, really should still have some knowledge of theory and history. This class was working on terminology, particularly tempo, articulation and dynamics, though they did touch on the Circle of Fifths as well. Pretty advanced fare for a Grade 9 class.

What I liked about that music class was how much the teacher involved her students. It's very refreshing to see creative activities applied to music theory. She related dynamic and articulative elements to people--like, grandma is piano in the morning but after 10 AM she's fortissimo--and asked her students to sing themes based on those characterizations. It was a good way to get them thinking.

Later on I was with another English teacher that I've seen before. During this class I found out that English students are tracked by ability, which explains a lot--some classes contain all high-performing students and others have the struggling readers. I'm not entirely on board with that, but considering the ways that classes are taught here, it makes a little more sense than it would in the States.

Anyway, that class was a high-performing class, and they had a lot of academic anxiety, which was... to be expected, really. Giving them short, academically-relevant digressions helped. We talked about dialect a little bit while working through their affix homework.

And the last class of the day was another English class with the rowdy Grade 9's. This one... admittedly, it's with one of the teachers whose style I don't like much. He moves very quickly through his lessons and doesn't seem to put enough effort into classroom management--the students were pretty disengaged. I had to control them for a little while when the teacher left the room because they were loud enough to disrupt other classes around them.

For once, I got to spend a little time at home before heading in for set work. It was nice, and I honestly don't remember what I did--probably just lying about. Got a little more painting done, managed to hit a child with a lectern while moving set pieces (in my defense, she wasn't in the designated actors-stay-here-to-remain-uninjured zone) and forgot to eat anything at all for dinner, so oops.

Oh, and I took a small cake in for my students. The stage hands are doing a good job, so they deserved a treat.

Tech Week continues through the weekend. I'm trying to work through my painting list, but I keep getting new assignments. I'll update when I'm less tired, and I'll try to take some pics of the theater and the set when I can!

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