(in a Jamaican voice) Yes me frens, da wins of woe be a kickin summen furce en da veelage.
With a NOAA weather station reported 52 mph wind whipping in yesterday morning at 8 am came something else, something indescribable, something that attached itself to our students like fungal spores, nay, a seed or a bore, on and into the fur of a passing ground dwelling mammal teenagers . Our students got something this week. They've got something bad.
Now I don't know if its the fact that all our snow just melted in about 16 hours, or if its getting darker, or if its because many parents have been out of town for weeks at the AFN (Alaska Federation of Natives) conference, or if its because of the rumored negative extra curricular activities that took place around town, but our kids are seriously starting to unravel. This week has been prone to student shut downs, sulking, sleeping, skipping, tardies, tantrums, explosions, sass, far above our normal offenders, and I'm pretty sure we've written more kids up in 3 days that the entire two first months put together.
So today I decided to try to start over. Even though I usually leave school a degraded and destroyed human being, I'm usually in a pretty good mood when I get to work. I'm the first one to arrive at school most days, I make the coffee for everyone, I write the days events on our school message board and always include a "Thought of the Day." I always write something postive, uplifting, or thoughtful, so that the first thing that people read when they come in is a nice thing. I also try to use quotes from major hippie propaganda like Ghandi, Bob Marley Lyrics, Michael Franti Lyrics, Hindu and Buddhist teachings, anything out of the ordinary to maybe break the spell of the horrifying world outside our walls (plus I pick things that apply to what is going on with our kids). On top of trying to help the school, its the one thing that helps me try to Radiate Warmth myself.
So today I wrote:
"The more I see, the less I know, but I know one thing, that I love you." -Michael Franti
And you know what, we had a pretty good day today (I had some mega happy Peter Tosh (see foto) reggae blasting into the hallway before school as a clear warning that no shitty attitudes would be tolerated). I mean all of my students were still off their rockers in every way, but I just tried to love them anyway, and we all kind of got a long. Actually the way our school operates reminds me of what couple are like after they just had a big fight. We're making up, starting over, trying again, and thats kind of novel.
Plus I drank Raven's Brew "Three Peckered Billy Goat" Coffee all day today thanks to my recent trip to town and I can't believe how much better it is than Maxwell House. I forgot how good coffee tasted since I've left the coffee mecca of the fertile Puget Sound region, with all of its fair trade organic worldly free internet cafe's and coffee roasters.