Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Curie the Class Bunny

Being a substitute teacher is a lot like being a regular teacher, minus the security or sense of belonging that comes with getting to write your name on the same whiteboard every day.  It's basically itinerant work, and difficult, too.  Keeping thirty kids in line with less than an hour to learn their names is not an ideal arrangement.  Being called on short notice to expound upon a subject you may not have given much thought to in a while can lead to unnecessary flirtations with mediocrity.  The ability to do any of it successfully rests with your skill in projecting a personality that commands a modicum of credibility without having time to earn it the old fashioned way.

But like all things, it has its perks.  The kids are generally happy to see you because they believe that your presence indicates a lighter workload, and they tend to forgive you if it turns out they're wrong.  You can make lame jokes that confuse the hell out of everyone, without worrying that your perceived insanity will hurt your ability to educate properly in the future. And if the teacher decides to softball the lesson plan in his or her absence, you get to watch children watch movies!

Oh, and sometimes there are bunnies.
This is Curie, who lives in room B109 of Agnes Stewart Middle School in Springfield, Oregon.  She sits in the corner while the students learn science and math, chewing on whatever that stuff in there is.  Grass?  I'm pretty sure she got hold of a paper towel at some point, somehow.  She's pretty damned adorable.

Apart from an improvised review/lecture on scatter plots and some homework help, my job on Monday morning largely consisted of keeping the room quiet and focused while Bill Nye rattled through the glorious history of genetics research.  Since the kids were pretty well behaved, I mostly just paced from one end of the room to another, looking responsible.  Curie, meanwhile, would chew on stuff constantly.  I don't know if that improves the learning environment, but it definitely made the room more awesome.

I'll be honest: this entire post was cooked up for the sole purpose of posting a picture of a rabbit on the internet.  Is that so wrong?  I don't care.  You'll thank me when you need your bunny fix.

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