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Wednesday, August 10, 2016

First Impressions

Yes this is another NaNo-post.

Get used to it, it will be my primary obsession for the next 9 months.

Anyway, last week, a few students had the opportunity to visit the high school early.

These are kiddos who have been identified as "at risk."

I happened to be working in my room when I started noticing traffic in the hall--highly unusual two weeks before school starts.

When I poked my head out, a couple of my peers were leading tour groups of 10 or so students around.

I said hello and went back to work.

About an hour later, the traffic picked up again.

This time it was pairs of students wandering about.

Turns out, the students had been given their schedules and locker numbers and were attempting to follow their daily schedule.
Some girls came by arguing loudly about the location of a room.

I helped them out with a nod in the right direction.

A couple other girls came by and shyly introduced themselves.

Then a young man came by alone.

Finally, one of the teachers came by with another boy, a tall thin kid with expressive eyes and shy body language.

I introduced myself.

Then I said "This year, we are going to write a novel."

He literally took a step back and those eyes went quite wide.

I continued "Don't worry. I'm going to write one too, and I hate writing stories!"

He visibly relaxed...and he was clearly listening.

I continued "We are going to spend months planning before we write and you guys will have to help me when I get stuck."

To be honest, I maybe exaggerate my trepidation about this whole project a little.

No, that's not true: I exaggerate my expressions for the benefit of students.

The fear is very very real.

Anyway, a quiet "I get it" was his response.

I babbled on a bit more about how we would be learning together.

He started to smile and said "Ok, I get it, its cool" and wandered down the hall after his teacher partner.

Maybe I am being overly optimistic (me, never), but I was pleased with that brief encounter.

He didn't gush or express any excitement...

He also didn't guffaw, protest, panic, or run away screaming--all reactions I am kind of anticipating initially.

This could be a good thing...right?

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What do you think? Does this good thing remind you of a story of your own? Have a question or comment? Please leave a comment!