Saturday, January 10, 2015

Spice Blending

They laugh alike, they talk alike, at times they even dress alike....
 I've spoken here before about the tremendous value of A Lunch.  Our district has three scheduled lunch periods - A,B,C - and teachers are assigned by building region.  With a two story new high school, it became quickly evident three years ago, that assigning the thundering herd of famished high school kids on the second floor to B Lunch proved to be disruptive to the educational process of the entire school.  We're talking Richter Scale-worthy disturbances as the herd hit the double set of staircases headed toward the cafeteria.

So here's the system:  A Lunchers are, for the most part, the second floor teachers:  Science, Social Studies and Math, included.  B Lunchers are a smattering of smaller 2nd floor classes, and first floor classes.  C Lunch are for those in the "wing" sections of the building -- the music, art, health and PE classes.  And those of us on prep 3rd period, during lunch, can choose to eat whenever it works for us.  For me, and my librarian friend, Sara, the choice is obvious.

After all, "A"s are what educators strive for, right?

The Te@chthought Blog Challenge for today, January 10th -

What are the benefits of connecting with other educators? How am I going to make sure I do this on a regular basis? 

Such an obvious answer!  A Lunch is, as I've stated before, for me, like the proverbial recharging station.  While the battery on my cellphone may not need attention by midday, I most certainly do.
Pictured above are two Social Studies teachers -- Justin and Dave.   Both are relatively new teachers to our district, both with us for less than 3 years.  On Wednesday, they appeared at lunch dressed alike.  Right down to their socks and shoes.  Yesterday, the south side of the table was coordinated in jewel tone colors that were so bright, those of us on the north side were squinting as we accused person after person of coordinating their wardrobes prior to school, as they entered the room.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not suggesting that the benefits of connecting with other educators has anything to do with fashion.  What I'm trying to stress here is that we are one week shy of the halfway point in this school year, and we have bonded across all domains.  (Yikes, I'm talking like Danielson here...)  For 30 minutes each day there are Math, Chemistry, Social Studies, Special Ed, Gifted Ed, and English teachers, as well as our Media Specialist/Librarian  (not sure on the politically correct term -- but heck, now I have something with which to start the conversation on Monday..)   

We connect, compare stories and concerns about common students, learn new things through the expertise of others, and, well, are grateful that we are behind closed doors a lot of the time as the terms "politically correct" are not always applicable.  Laughter ensues continually.  Tears often follow.  

Yes, A Lunch is that funny.

You may be familiar with Five Spice Blend?  Well, A Lunch is working, hard, to promote the use of the Two Spice Blend as an accepted term. (It's one syllable shorter than Salt and Pepper, after all.)

On Thursday there was a sudden solemness as we realized that our Block-Scheduled high school would be starting a new semester in less than 2 weeks.    "What lunch do you have next semester?" became the greeting as people carried their trays or lunch totes into the faculty room.

You'll be relieved to know that our group is intact.  At least for another semester. 

After all, who would have the nerve to break up the brain trust who brought JANuary to the district?

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