25 April 2012

How Doth the Little Busy Bee...

In honor of National Poetry Month, I wanted to post one that speaks about my frame of mind today. Here it is:

How Doth the Little Busy Bee...by Isaac Watts

How doth the little busy bee
Improve each shining hour,
And gather honey all the day
From every opening flower!

How skilfully she builds her cell!
How neat she spreads the wax!
And labors hard to store it well
With the sweet food she makes.

In works of labor or of skill,
I would be busy too;
For Satan finds some mischief still
For idle hands to do.

In books, or work, or healthful play,
Let my first years be passed,
That I may give for every day
Some good account at last.

* * * * * * * * * * * *

I know that lots of people are busy. I just feel extra busy right now. I think this feeling is related to a large dose of good intentions and a somewhat mental inability to say no. (I'm getting better, though, at saying 'no,' that is.)

I have myself involved in no less than two church projects, planning a field trip, running a reading competition, building an elementary school honor society, and pulling together the many loose ends that need to be tied up and tucked away before the end of the school year. And why am I writing about this? Well, I had a busy night, which is what brought these thoughts to the forefront of my mind. From early this morning, my feet hit the ground running and did not stop until late in the evening. (Huh, incidentally, "Late in the Evening" is one of my favorite Paul Simon songs, but I digress.) 

This is not a complaint; it's just a fact of my life right now. I teach, so my day is full of the regular demands of instruction in addition to the extra things that have crept in. Today, that extra thing was Reading Competition Team practice (which I will lather-rinse-repeat tomorrow, too), which took place after school. I have a group of almost forty children, half of whom practice on Wednesday and half on Thursday. They're reading books from an official list, and they'll compete on small teams against one another to answer questions about the books they have read from the list. It is a lot of fun, and I am glad I have taken it on. Anything that sparks a love of reading and experiencing new literature in a child is good in my book. With that being said, I am turning my question of the evening over to you, reader. I would love it if you would respond and leave a comment about what book or books you think would populate the list of essential literature for upper elementary kids to read. What books are must reads for the 9-11-year-old set? I already know that Judy Blume is on that list. Wow me with a different, unique suggestion if you have a chance. I would love to hear from you. 

I'm signing off of this somewhat shortened post. I need to gather as many z's as I can so that I can meet tomorrow's to-do list with enough gumption to give a good one-two punch to a few of the items on there!

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