Let’s talk about the animals in my room.
No, I’m not talking about the class pet (I don’t have one…just a plant). I’m talking about the living creatures that occasionally find their way into my classroom.
Now, let me tell you a little about my room. First of all, I work in a very beautiful school. Lovely white walls and wooden beams make it look almost Hispanic-Catholic-Mission-ish. But, if you were to go out the back door, across the rocky playground, and past the cement toilets, you would come to my classroom: a double wide trailer disguised behind wooden panels and a covered verandah. That’s right, a double wide trailer. I’m not sure how I got the short end of the stick when it came to classrooms, but it happened. I honestly had no idea that my classroom was half the size of everyone else’s until a few months after I began working. And I just want to say that I thank the Lord everyday for bringing me to this job, seriously.
However, being in Siberia does have its perks: my class is rarely bothered by administration, wandering students, and the like. We have a super easy fire drill route. And I’m the closest to the buses, so we get in line first almost every day.
But the part that I can’t stand is the part where every other day I am killing something. No, not a child, but a creature. I could be positive about the situation and believe that they like my room because I have created such a lovely environment. But that would be a lie.
My very first day at Ft. Thomas, the principal told me that the day before, a baby rattlesnake had been found INSIDE my room. Every time I think about that situation, I thank God I was not there.
Then, there are the spiders. Oh, yes, the spiders. And not just tiny little guys that occasionally get slightly bigger than tiny. I’m not even talking about daddy-long-legs. I’m talking about big, fat, mamma spiders with bodies the size of quarters! Luckily, my kids are fearless. When they see one, they say things like, “Oh, by the way, there is spider over there, Mrs. Westerfield.” Meanwhile, my heart is starting to palpitate and my hands get sweaty and my knees are shaky. My reaction is always the same: I take off my shoe and squash it, all while continuing to teach. Ha.
And finally: bees. I have had three bees wander into my classroom so far this year. They are so sneaky. I work very hard to shut my door as quickly as possible to keep those bees out, but somehow they find their way in. Bees by far create the most havoc because they are so tricky to kill, I feel like I’m sparring. But each time I have taken off my shoe and popped the little sucker.
So, moral of the story is this: when a teacher, wear shoes that are easily removed.