Sunday, April 23, 2006

Long time no blog

It has been a while, but in a nutshell, here's what's happening.

I went to Connecticut for the easter weekend. It was nice, but 10 hours each way is too much time to spend in a car for 2 days of being there.

I finished day 3 of my FSL course, it's hard, but it's going to be ok I think. It will mean that I will teach some sort of french for the rest of my teaching career but it will also mean that I will most likely always have a job.

I have started my 4 over 5 which means I will be on sabbatical for the school year 2010-2011. It seems strange to write those numbers down.

My couch and entertainment unit is being delivered in less than a week! I'm so excited to be able to stretch out while watching tv.

Doing a recording with the Royals. They've hired Doriann though, so although my name will be on the recording, you won't hear me.

So have two books for review today.

Bodies - Overcoming the Tyranny of Perfection
Barry Glassner

Good read at the beginning, but towards the end, his theories just seemed a bit to convenient for me. I enjoyed the socialogical studies and the painting of different people and the way they feel about their bodies. The good thing about this book is that it definitely leaves you with a sense that comparing yourself to an unattainable ideal is fruitless and that you should learn to love yourself for who you are, but like every self help book on the planet, doesn't actually tell you how to do so. For me, it's just a constant struggle. When I catch myself comparing, I give myself a mental swat upside the head, but not before the thought has lingered in my brain for a moment. No matter how many times you tell yourself that the people in the media are made up, the very nature of advertising is to make you want what is being sold. It's all fine and dandy to say, "I"m bigger than this, I'm a better person, because I don't buy into that garbage" but if you don't believe it, or can't make yourself believe it all or some of the time, you're left feeling inadequate. Just once though, I wonder what it would be like to have the shoe on the other foot, with curvy and heavier people being the ideal, and all those skin and bones people with no boobs or hips feeling inadequate. Except for the skin and bones people who have them implanted! Ha ha! Anyway, interesting read, if only to kickstart your own introspective.

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants
Ann Brashares

Aside from the silly American spelling, this was a great read. I had wanted to read it because it seemed every second girl in my classes was reading it, and I always am interested in what tickles their fancy. Kids are pretty fickle these days, what with all the options available to them in their free time, so when they latch onto something, it's usually popular or really good. The book is about 4 15 year old friends a pair of magical pants (jeans) that fit and look great on everyone. This is the first summer that they are spending apart and they decide to pass the jeans around and record their adventures. Great book for 15 year olds and up, but not something I think my 12/13 year old students should be reading. Only because one of the characters has sex before she is ready and it really messes with her head. On the one hand, hopefully it will consider asking more questions before jumping headlong into something they may not be ready for, but on the other hand, will it give them ideas that would have ordinarily not been planted? I don't know. Anyway, looking forward to seeing the movie and reading the other two books in the series.

Off to dinner with Syd.

1 comment:

Amy Brown said...

Why does Barry Glassner sound familiar to me? Oh! Because I just read his "Culture of Fear" book. (This is why I keep a book blog!) Culture of Fear was very interesting; I will have to look into the one you read too.

Re: ages and books. I read once, and have used it as a rule of thumb ever since, that kids like to read books about kids who are a few years older than themselves. Because older kids are always cooler, and because it gives them a chance to experience things through reading before they have to confront them in real life. As you know I always give Delphine lots of chances to "rehearse" new experiences through books before she goes through them in real life, and it seems to be really helpful for her.

(I also use the rule of thumb as a guide when I'm buying books for a kid I don't know very well, like my English cousins.)