My life has become much busier in the last couple of weeks- not only because of my City Council duties, but because I am substituting a LOT at the high school. Our most wonderful new band director, Mr. Seamons, just happens to be in the Army Reserve and he will be deployed to the Middle East on May 3. He has training for most of January and March, so I will be subbing for him while he's gone. I will actually be at the school more than he will be there this spring!
It is a little weird substituting in the same classroom where I taught for 6 years. . . but I am having a blast. The kids are great and I already knew many of them because of their associations with Colby. I was pretty burned out after 15 years of teaching, but now that I have had 5 years off, I am enjoying it again.
Except for Friday.
Some dumb kid decided to call in a bomb scare, so the school went into lock down. I had the percussion ensemble, so we kept right on rehearsing for a while. I figured it was just a drug bust. But after a couple of announcements, it was clear that there was something going on and we needed to be able to actually HEAR the announcements, so we packed up. Not long after that, the school psychologist came to the room to help me check for out-of-place items or articles that did not belong to one of the students in the classroom. Hello! This is a band room! There are hundreds of cases and bags!!! But, there were a couple of items that looked a little suspicious, so she decided that the dog should come in.
At that point I decided to tell the kids what was going on and that the dog was coming- just in case I had someone who was going to freak out. There were a couple of kids who were a little nervous, but the big surprise came when one of the kids said, "Uh, you should probably know that I think I have firecrackers in my backpack." Oh my heck!!! Duh!!!
I thanked him for being honest right up front, stopped him from retrieving the firecrackers out of the backpack, and reported the problem. When the dogs came in all was well because the handlers already had a heads up. The suspicious items turned out to be fine and the perpetrators were arrested.
After about 1.5 hours the lock down ended. The students gratefully headed to lunch and the restrooms. I headed for the young man with the firecrackers and used a little teacher voice on him. If he doesn't clean out his backpack this weekend, I'm gonna bust him.