Oh man, it seems like this whole year has been stressful for everyone in the building – teachers, paras, administrators, aides. Everyone except the kids, who in the words of one colleague, “just go with the flow.”
This week, we were working on some math writing. The kids are really into multiplication lately and were all working quietly. I was sitting with my group of new girls who just came to the class a couple of days earlier. We were getting to know each other, breaking the ice, talking about the transition and what they could expect.
Suddenly, the otherwise silent room was filled by a not so quiet hummed rendition of Usher’s “OMG,” drifting through the air from the corner where the humming student sat all the way over to me across the room. I looked up, partly bemused, wholly intrigued. The student was in the middle of the part where the background vocalists go “Ohhh oh oh oh oh, ohhhh oh oh oh oh,” when I called his name. He responded, “Yes?” From his face, I could tell he thought he was in trouble. He must have wondered what I was going to say.
He was pretty shocked when he heard me singing the rest of the verse: “oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh.” We all had a good laugh over it (including the little music man).
Since then, I’ve found myself singing a bit more in the class. The kids love it. Sometimes I sing instructions to the tune of a song they know (Bieber’s “Baby” always polarizes them but it lends itself so well.) Other times I’ll rework the lyrics of Christmas carol for their benefit. We played a math game on the smart board and all grooved out to the accompanying music while applying our multiplication knowledge. It’s all spontaneous and great fun.
It’s keeping us cheerful, and we need that. Sometimes, you’ve gotta sing!