Tuesday, May 03, 2005

the door

A student took my doorknob, which brings me back to the earliest reflections I made about the day-to-day at Douglass. The door. Lock it or not? Leave it open or not? Paper it over or not? And with what? And how? Answer the knocks on the door or not? Blow out the door like a beast when I hear shit out there or ignore it? Push a kid out with my shoulder and risk his mother's ire or let him come in and fuck up my class?
Here's the current status of my doors: one of my students went to the office and got some translucent blue paper and papered over the glass with that. However, she used duct tape, so it fell two days later. I have discovered that simply stapling the paper up seems to be enough. So the doors are papered in blue. They look so cool from the hall. (Maybe that's why I have so damned many children hanging around in the hall outside my door. The blue is very soothing.) A kid who is not even my student but who came into my class a couple of times and read Hamlet with us taped a sign on each door, "Do not disturb. Reading Shakespeare. M Plesh" I think I already may have mentioned that here in this blog.
Excuse me. I'm TIRED.
The door that lost the doorknob is the main door, so the lesser door, the secondary door next to my desk, is now the primary door. On this door, the once secondary, now primary, I have a sign, "please use other door." Now I answer all knocks at the new secondary door (formerly the primary door, but no one seems to NOTICE that the doorknob is missing), and I bellow down the hall, "YES???" Once it was a security guard knocking. Once it was the assistant principal.
A lot of kids and other people come to my door. I have finally made one particular boy understand that we actually have class inside my door, because yesterday he came to my door, for approximately the millionth time. I answered his knock, and before he barged in he actually asked me if we were busy. I said yes, and he said okay and left. I of course later admired him loudly and profusely and publicly for that.
Teachers are so patient.
The seniors have finished their classes this week, so it's a melancholy time. I have more to say about that, a lot more, but my chicken is ready.
What I do realize is how much love there is in my classroom and among the students who hang around. And in my heart. The trial is over. Now it's just love and joy.
Two weeks before the school year ends.

Melanie


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