Monday, February 25, 2013

Silly Students, Personal Lives are for .... Not Teachers!

I try to be very professional with my students. That doesn't stop them from asking the most personal kind of questions.

Also, they say really funny things sometimes, and I thought that I would just share a little bit with you:

Student: Ms B., how old are you?
Me: I'm 47.
Student: No way!
Me: Yes way!
Student: But.... you look like you're in your 20's!
Me: Oh stop! I'm blushing!
Student: Oh my gosh, you're older than my mom!

Student: Ms B., why are you not married?
Me: Because I'm very, very picky. Also, I'm extremely young.
Student: No, really!
Me: We're not going to talk about this.
Student: Why?
Me: Because it isn't professional.
Student: But.... I just don't get it. It's not like you're ugly or anything.

Student 1: How do you spell essay?
Student 2: That's a dumb question. It's S-A.

Student1: One direction is the best band EVER!
Student 2: I know! What did anyone ever listen to before them? They are the BEST!
Me: Have you ever heard of the Beatles?
Student 1: Yes, I have.
Me: Well, they are generally considered the "best band ever," just saying.
Student: They are nothing compared to One Direction. One Direction is definitely better.
Me: There are a lot of bands like One Direction that have come and gone, but the Beatles have remained present in our social consciousness for generations. So, I really don't think you're right.
Student: Name even one band like that.
Me: Well how about N'Sync? Have you ever heard of them?
Student: No.
Me: 98 degrees?
Student: No!
Me: Savage Garden?
Student: Wha...?
Me: Hansen?
Student: Ms B., I think you are making these bands up.
Me: No, I am not. All of these bands . . . were just like One Direction. And just like all of these bands, the next generation will have no idea who they are or what songs they did.

Me: Boys and girls, please don't call me "Mrs." B. Mrs. B. is my mother.
Student1: So, what should we call you?
Me: Ms B.
Student2: Wait. You're not married?
Student3: How is that possible?
Me: I'm very young, you know.
Student3: But you're pretty!
Student 4 (to student 3, vehemently): Stop it! Mrs B. just hasn't met the right man yet. Someday, she will meet him, and he will be awesome, and he will love her sooooo much, and then they will get married and live happily ever after! So just give her a break!
Me: I'm so glad you have my life planned out for me, Student4.
Student4: No problem, Mrs. B.

Student 1: What is 40 plus 30?
Student 2: It's 70. You should know that by now. We're 7th graders, not kindergartners.

Me: Class! I have an exciting announcement to make!
Student1: You're pregnant!
Student2: You're engaged!
Student3: You're married!
Student4: You got a puppy!
Student5: Just let her talk, guys.
Me: We're going to memorize poems!
Student6: That's not as exciting as you made it sound.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

My Soundtrack

Music is emotional, isn't it? For this reason, some songs are just special. Maybe they remind you of a certain time in your life or a certain person who is special, but each of us have a catalog of songs that mean something more than merely words and sounds. These are some of mine.

1. "Somewhere Over the Rainbow," as sung by Judy Garland.

When I was very little, I watched this movie every day. During the day while Stephanie and Janel were at school, I pretended to be Dorothy, and I even had a tiny, little Lego Toto dog that I carried around in a tiny cloth basket. This is one of the first songs I learned all the lyrics to. As I've grown older, the song has grown with me. It is full of hope, and sometimes I think it's unfortunate, but so am I.

2. "Yesterday," The Beatles.

When I was 16, I was part of a pioneer trek reenactment. I was put in a "family" with a bunch of other kids and two very, very old "parents" whom we fondly called "Ma" and "Pa." We were a very musical group, and I was young and thought I was musical, too. We sang a lot of songs. Our Ma and Pa asked us to sing specific songs, and this was one of them. I was the only one who knew it, so I sang it alone. Our Pa cried a little and thanked me for singing it, because it was special to him. Now it is special to me, too.

3. "Halo," Beyonce.

I just loved this song the first time I heard it, and I listened to it about seven hundred and eighty two times the summer of 2009, which was also the year I worked EFY all summer long. I love remember that time! It was an incredible summer!

4. "I Am a Child of God"

This song is so beautiful that I imagine it is on many people's lists. Perhaps it is even on yours?

5. "I Dig a Pony," The Beatles.

My boss when I was in High school thought I was cool for one, glimmering moment when I knew the lyrics to this song. One, single moment.

6. "Hey Jude," The Beatles.

This was my audition piece for the Jazz band, and my favorite piano solo in Jazz band, too. It also happens to be one of the best songs ever penned, so why shouldn't it be on this list?

7. "My Funny Valentine," Um.... Mediocre (Jazz Band. I'm not sure who did this one originally. Google it if you really need to know.)

Another Jazz Band solo. 2nd favorite. Most jazz-y, too.

8. "It Don't Matter to Me," Bread.

After I graduated from BYU, my Dad helped me drive my car back to Pennsylvania. As we rode together, we listened to many songs, this being one of them. For those of you who are just now tuning in to this blog, that was a sad time for me because of a breakup that happened that same month. The song goes, "It don't matter to me if your searching brings you back together with me, because there'll always be an empty room waiting for you, an open heart waiting for you." And here I was, being driven home by my Dad to an empty room waiting for me, and his open heart beating just above the driver's seat of my 2002 ford focus. I don't know what events originally inspired these lyrics, but for me, they will always be a profession of my Dad's undying love for me.

9. "Maybe This Time," Cabaret.

My friend Bergen took me for a drive after a breakup back in 2009. He gave me an epic pep talk and sang along to this song as it appears on the Glee soundtrack, making it one of my all-time favorite songs ever.

10. "I Couldn't Live Without Your Love," Petula Clark.

This just happens to be one of my favorite love songs.

11. "You Can Call Me Al," Paul Simon.

I remember hearing this song on the radio when I was very young (younger than 7). It was just my Mom and I in the car, and as we rolled into our driveway, it ended. I think we only caught the end of the song or something, because we didn't know the name of the song. We both wanted to know the name, but the radio station didn't announce it. We both had just.... really liked it! Mom said something about the different instruments in it. I remember a little while later, Mom came to me all excited, and explained that she heard the song at the grocery store that day, and knew the title: "Call Me Al." Now every time I hear that song, I think of my Mom, and that is special.

12. "River of Dreams," Billy Joel.

We called this one "The Pool Song" because they played it at the Watsontown pool about once per hour. Love it!

13. "Daydream Believer," The Monkees

Long before "Shrek" was even an idea in someone's head, we listened to the Monkees. Actually, we had several of their albums (I'm talking vinyl here. Why replace a perfectly good sound system? Said my parents), and we jammed to this tune while we cleaned our ever-dirty house (we have a very large family. Mess happens).

14. "Mamma Mia," Abba

When my Mom was an impetuous teen, she dedicated this song to my Dad on the radio at 3 in the morning. (I am convinced that the greatest love story to date is the one between my Mom and Dad).

15. "My Heart's in the Highlands"

When I'm homesick, this is my anthem.

16. Night Song

"How fair is night,
heavenly stillness
peaceful thy brow
see the stars so clearly streaming
moving through the heaven's portal
bright and silent eyes immortal
from the distance on us gleaming,
from the distance gleaming."

I found this song in an old songbook and fell in love with it. I even learned the somewhat difficult melody on the harmonica, but I have no idea what the title is, and it doesn't google well. If anyone knows anything about this song, leave a comment please!

17. "Love at Home"

We sang this song at my sister's funeral.

18. "We Thank Thee, Oh God, for a Prophet"

We sing this song at almost every family home evening.

19. Down in the Valley

This is the last song my Grandpa played on the harmonica before he died. It is special to all of us.

20. Toby's Lullaby

When my youngest brother was a baby, I sang him to sleep with a song that I made up. I wrote down the words, because frankly, it's not bad. For some reason, this song gets stuck in my head sometimes. I find myself humming it in the shower, or on a walk, or as I shop for groceries.  I love this song, because it reminds me of a time when I got to become closer to my brother. It might be presumptuous, because I am neither married nor in love, but I look forward to the day when I will sing that song to my own children.

Who knows? Maybe more songs will come to me when I have a sweet, tiny muse in my arms all night long.