Monday, August 29, 2011

Rachel K. Camp

After a summery blur of headaches, white polos, kids, Jersey and too much sleep, I went to an orientation for my student teaching internship at Seattle University; this event represents the end of my summer and the start of the rest of my master in teaching program.

I spent the majority of the summer working at a private technology camp for privileged "indoor children" at the local, big-name university (it lasted 8 weeks, but to say 56 days or even 1,344 hours seems to capture the camp essence more aptly). I was hired to be the assistant director, which is the glamorous office manager position that I held the previous year, in which I did a lot of work and nobody knew who I was. I prefer "backstage" work like that, but I ended up being unexpectedly promoted after pushing the director down a flight of oiled stairs the director fell suddenly ill. It was a daunting position this year because the university elected to close the only nearby, working cafeteria on campus, which relegated 110 people per week to buying our lunches at a glorified 7-11. As the weeks slugged by, my initial enthusiasm for young people and healthful eating subsided and I found myself thinking aloud, "I guess beef jerky is a well rounded lunch, Aidan," or "Sure thing, Aiden (a girl this time), you can totally have 3 sodas today... cuz camp is supposed to be fun. Just don't tell your mom, kay?" The way children choose food and eat it is generally appalling. However, after my third complaint that "the management is too strict on the children eating vegetables and fruits," I gave up and decided that most parents are terrible human beings who want their children to develop scurvy so Angelina Jolie will consider adopting them and they, the parent, will finally have that opportunity to be a career gal. I realize I'm being unfair, but parents can be demanding and ridiculous. Plus, I'm not a parent and can judge other parents freely and without remorse. I had the pleasure of working with some industrious and creative young people, and enjoyed policing their unbridled lollygagging. I also was at the advantage, as being the most in charge person dictates, of being harangued by police officers about negligence (I will deny it until my dying day), sending kids home at 3am for bullying, writing kids up for cyber bullying, writing kids up for punching other kids after an argument about Pok√©mon, writing kids up for calling each other "fag" on a LAN server, having upset parents scream racial slurs at me, comforting grown staff members as they cried/had stuff stolen/were fired, and playing apples to apples ad nauseam. It was an eventful season, and now it is over, and it is likely that in my deranged condition of liking children and hating free time that I will be raring to go again for camp by March.

For now, it's time to get back into the swing of my masters program. I'll be working at Gumball Elementary (name changed to protect the innocent/be awesome) in a 5th grade open concept classroom with a kindly woman named Mrs. Cake (protecting the innocent!!!) I have no idea when I'm expected to show up for work there, but I've been told in as many words from the folks at SU that I won't be expected to show up for my masters classes again until September 17th. It is likely that I will have some sort of child-related, educational experiences with Mrs. Cake between now and the 17th, which will be a welcome change to me playing video games all day, napping and playing more video games. I have also watched about 90 movies on netflix instant, and will continue to use its fine product while complaining about the price increase. $2 more a month? Highway robbery!

I will do my best to write more, and to keep an account of this program and my blossoming into teacherhood.