Pat McCarthy is the author of a dozen nonfiction books for children and young adults. She has published numerous stories, articles, puzzles and quizzes in magazines for children and adults. She teaches for the Institute of Children's Literature. She has also written encyclopedia articles and school curriculum. Pat is a retired elementary school teacher who subs to remain in touch with kids. Her hobbies are photography, travel, birding and scrapbooking.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

A Surprise and Some Writing Leads

Haven't entered anything for awhile. Subbed Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Wednesday in sixth grade there were no lesson plans, I had a double period of Language Arts, then five classes of art in a class where the other teachers said she lets them yell the whole period. Got some stuff from another LA teacher and told them in art that they could talk, but not yell. Got through it somehow. At least it was in the basement and not too hot.

Thursday was upstairs with fourth grade, but the teacher has bad allergies, so they put in a window AC. That helped. The most intersting thing was that I met the little half-sister of my grand-niece. I don't know if this little girl knows she HAS a big sister, so I didn't say anything, but boy, she sure looks like Heather did at 9! My nephew adopted Heather when she was about that age, as her dad had never had anything to do with her.

Friday was fifth grade and another hot day. The morning was fine because I didn't have my homeroom! The other two classes worked quietly on their math test and worksheet, so I let them play a game for the last part of the period. The homeroom is the class from _ _ _ _ .
There are four boys who are a mess. One never stops talking, one didn't take his ADD medication, one was in in-school suspension, and the other says he's supposed to sit back in the corner and be quiet, but he doesn't have to do any work. I told him when I'm there, he's going to work.

I got lucky, because a few minutes into the afternoon one of the tutors came in and said, "I'm going to take B_ _ _ _ off your hands." (The one without the medication). "Who else do you want me to take?" I pointed to the kid in the corner and she took him, too.

Then it wasn't too bad. They got their test and worksheet done, with some talking. I had taken puzzles for them to work on when they finished their work. Then we divided into two groups and played the game. I had to play because one group was short, but it was fun.

I'm there for them again Monday, and she just left a huge stack of worksheets on the desk and said to pass them out in any order, or do anything I want. I know darn well that with only two days of school left, they're not going to sit there quietly working on worksheets that they know won't count anyway! So I'm going to come up with more puzzles, another game or two and show the video of My Side of the Mountain in the afternoon.

I asked on the NF for Kids list if anyone knew of a publisher assigning biographies. Two people let me know of publishers that are, and my friend, Laura Salas, told me one of her publishers is looking for someone to do some nonfiction chapter books for sixth grade and had asked her to pass the word. So I e-mailed two of them and am putting together a proposal for the other. Hopefully one of them will pan out. Even better, maybe ALL of them will! I can write pretty fast when I have to! Went to the library in Dayton today to get some books.

My cat, Oz, has found a new favorite plase to lie. He likes the towel stand in the bathroom! So I'm posting a picture of him in there.

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