Writing is like being able to put life into a snow globe. It takes the things that are too big and scary and reduces them into a form that I can put away when I want and look at from a distance. It also takes all that’s good in life and captures it into something I can take out when I want and look at close up and keep forever. It makes the bad things into something I can hold…and the good things into something I can hold onto. Both help so much that I need that little souvenir of life.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Sub Notes: How Times Have Changed Part I

I subbed for years when we moved all over the country due to my then-husband’s job—once we lived in three cities in just over a year’s time—and then I stayed home for several years while the children were small and we moved around due to his job some more. When I went back, changes had taken place. A lot of them. I guess some might lament that fact—and the truth is, some of the changes were negative. But there were quite a few positive ones, too.

Children today are familiar with other people’s differences and much more tolerant of them. They can be proud of who they are, how they look and who they love. I’m not sure why, but they are cleaner. They wash their hands. No one has B.O. Severe acne is all but nonexistent. Some are medicated, yes, but that can be a great thing. If they have mental issues, those issues are better understood. It’s likely they’re addressed rather than bottled up and left to ferment.

Boys are allowed to be nurturing. They can like the color pink, and some are open about the fact that they do. They can like cuteness. They can announce that they’re going into nursing or elementary teaching and feel proud of aspiring to a great job.

It no longer seems nerdy to be smart. In fact, it’s not just another asset, but an important one. The ones who are in shape are in better shape than we were because they play more organized sports. They are fit and hard-bodied. They push themselves more. They are goal-oriented, in touch, plugged in, and on the ball. They are sophisticated, motivated, and educated. A master’s degree is the new bachelor’s. Some would say it’s too much, but I do admire the work ethic some of them have.

Last week I got to talking to a boy in the library. He told me he was off on paid vacation from his fulltime job that he works in addition to fulltime high school. He gets about five hours’ sleep per night, but he is headed places and proud of himself for it. And rightly so.

Another boy checked out Beowulf for a little light reading. He said he’d read it a few times before.

And the girls…! That’s another story. Or rather, blog post. Please consider staying tuned.

Sixth Grade Boy: "I have to pee."
Me: "Can you think of a more school-appropriate way to ask that?"
Boy: (After some thought) "I must urinate?" 


  1. Tammy--Your insistence on looking at how the glass is half-full was much needed today. Thanks.

    All of those positives are true. I hadn't thought about it, but many things ARE better than they were in the "good ol' days.

    And now, "I got to use it." (That's how we roll in Third Gradeland....)

  2. Insightful observations, Tammy.
    And I love the sixth-grader's quote.

  3. Those times, they really are a changin'!

    Critter Alley

  4. They are changing, but hopefully it's not too much pressure as I feel it might be with some... seems like we fill up our days with as much as we can... yeah, look at me doing just that! I do like that being smart is a good thing though.

  5. That's beautiful! Those of us caught here in the middle of politically-driven sensationalized 'news' are rarely ever privy to this type of analysis!

  6. Thanks for this. It is so wonderful to read positives about our kids!


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