Monthly Archives: April 2006

Reflections on an Interview

I promised to write more about the interview, so here it is.

I’ve been thinking about it ever since Thursday evening, and I’m pleased to tell you that I haven’t had to beat myself up in any kind of serious way. I’ve come up with a couple of things I wish I’d said, but nothing that I wish I hadn’t said. I think that’s a very, very good sign (particularly given my tendency to release the clutch on my brain before it’s fully engaged).

Friday morning, I wrote thank you notes to everyone who was in on the interview and delivered them to the office mailboxes. I met up with one of the panelists at the photocopier on Friday morning, and she told me that she thought my interview “went very well.” Really, all the indications are that I didn’t do or say anything that caused the panelists to chuck my resume as soon as I walked out the door. I remain optimistic.

Did I mention that I was also in the midst of a my second solo week while all of this was going on? Well, I was. I’m actually glad that I was so preoccupied with the work ahead of the interview; I’m pretty sure I would have worried myself to a pile of ash otherwise. Kizz asked me the other day what grade I’d give my second solo week. I’m thinking it’s probably a solid B+, maybe even an A-. There were a couple of rough spots (I actually threw two kids out of my classes at varying points in the week, and one of them ended up in a conference – into which I was called – in the assistant principal’s office. Of course, this was a little more than two hours before my interview with same said assistant principal. I wonder what kind of impression that made…), but overall, I’m pleased. CT is not-so-secretly hoping I’ll take over a couple classes for the remainder of my internship (which, OH MY GOD, is only two more weeks! Watch for a post on THAT!) and I’m more than happy to take them. I love the work, I love the kids, I’m having a great time.

And I hope I get the job….

(oh, and the graphic? I couldn’t find anything “interview-ish”, so I went with a spring motif)

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Check In, Please

Dear Frankenstein Readers:

I’ve never done this sort of thing before – this “book club on a blog” thing – so please forgive if it’s seeming a little choppy and disjointed. I’m doing the best I can in uncharted territory.

My question to you is this – where are all of you in the novel? I’ve asked my kids to read through chapter 15 for Monday, and I may give them a “reading day” on Monday, to boot, just so they can catch up if they’re behind. I’ve got a couple of blog readers who are trying to figure out what they can comment on; they don’t want to give away anything that others haven’t read yet, so I want to get a sense of where we all are in the reading.

I also want to know if you would like some guiding questions. I’ve refrained from offering discussion suggestions for a number of reasons; I do it all day in school and I often don’t feel like doing it at home; we’re all adults here (well, MOST of the time!) and I’m really interested in what you think is important or interesting enough to talk about without any input from me and finally, I recognize my tendency, as an English teacher, for overanalyzation of literature – I often just can’t help myself – and you might not be so inclined. If you WANT me to throw out a question or a topic for discussion, let me know and I’ll be more than happy to oblige. Please know, though, that YOU can throw topics/questions/comments out for general consumption, too.

In a couple of days, when we’ve had some more conversations about what we’ve read thus far, I’ll post an entry about some of the conversations I’ve had with the AP kids. I’ll likely be looking for advice about keeping those conversations going, and about what a meaningful tactic for assessment might be, so please keep those questions in your mind as you continue to read.

Happy Saturday!

-Mrs. Chili


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SO?! How’d it Go?!?

Not having had any experience with this sort of thing, I will tell you that my interview yesterday didn’t go badly. No one asked me any questions I didn’t understand, I didn’t babble too much, I didn’t use any inappropriate language (those of you who know me know that I’m sometimes prone to use the more, shall we say base?, figures in our language) and, when it was all over, the assistant principal, who showed me out of the room, said that it “went well.” When I mentioned that this was my first-ever interview, he seemed mildlly surprised. I’m taking that as a good sign.

I’ll write more tonight – I’m on my way out the door right now and I didn’t have a chance to write last night because I was called in as an emergency substitute for a sign language class at the university and didn’t get home until pretty late. I was exhausted by then and only wanted to go to bed.

Thank you all so much for your support. I promise to keep you apprised of everything that happens!

-Mrs. Chili


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Seventh period, the last of the day, is what’s called a literacy lab. It’s a remedial class for kids who scored very low on some standardized language test. Our lab consists of five kids – three girls and two boys – and we try to spend some time each class working on some of the basic structures of English. Some of the kids do better with the basics than others.

True story:

Today, after the lesson, I left them with a half an hour in which to read. Two of the students – both of the boys – asked me if we could spend the time playing Scrabble. It’s one of my favorite games, so I said “sure!”

One of the boys is a little frustrating to play with, though, because he insists on asking me if a collection of letters is a word. “Mrs. Chili, is ‘g-a-m’ a word? Is ‘l-o-c’ a word?” He does this all the time. He did this today.

We were about fifteen minutes into the game when this boy turns to me and says “Mrs. Chili, is ‘y-o-u’ a word?”

I looked at the boy and said “ask me again?” Which he does. I had ALL I could do to keep a straight face.

“Sweetie,” I said, “if you don’t know, you can’t use the word.”

He didn’t.


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