Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Tiny Dancer Dances

Ok, so the Talent Show happened. It was a great experience and an awesome night for the performers and the audience. We had 60-something kids performing--not all solo--most of them in groups (It ended up being about 33 acts). Everyone did their best and performed the way they practiced. It wasn't a competition, rather a night of entertainment. The best choice I made was asking the kids to keep their acts close to one minute long!

We had it outside and we didn't think about lighting--except to light the performers--we had one spotlight. The audience was maybe a little too dark but it was great because someone was giving out those glow in the dark necklaces. At one point I got this cool feeling like when I was a kid and I was trick-or-treating and running around in the dark with my friends. I know it made for some great memories for the kids.

K'yhana (3rd grade) told me that after she sang and the audience cheered, it made her mother cry. Her mom told her that the audience sounded like a thousand lions roaring. Of course her song was "I Believe I can Fly".

I had these two boys audition--one could kinda play the guitar and the other could kinda dance. I made them be in a group together and made the dancer dress like a monkey! It went great!

We had three magicians, loads of singers and dancers, two kids doing monologues, a kid bouncing a tennis ball on his raquet 100 times in a row while the audience counted, a gymnast, some piano players, an electric guitarist playing the intro to "Brown Sugar" and ended the night with three boys performing as Alvin and the Chipmunks!

Even as I typed this one of the kids came into the room to ask if we are doing it again next year.

My favorite had to be Kathleen. She didn't get shy and change things up--she got on stage and danced like there's no tomorrow.

Thursday, April 24, 2008


There is a girl in first grade and her last name is Moody. Yes, her name fits. At least once a month she gets very upset in Drama class because she gets shy when she isn't the best at whatever we are doing. If she makes a mistake, the tears start to flow.

I have talked to her several times, but today I had kind of a breakthrough. I kept her after class and I found out that when everyone looks at her, she gets real freaked out. When she makes a mistake, she feels like everyone is looking at her and making fun of her. We talked about it some more and hopefully she will get over her fears.

Of course, I then realized what will happen when she returns to class. I asked her, "Now, when you open the door to go back into the room, what are the kids going to do?" She replied, "Look at me." I asked her, "Do you know why they all look when the door opens?" "No," she said. I told her, "They look because they think it might be Santa Clause."

Umm, OK

The music teacher told me that this morning, Hayden (kindergarten) came sashaying across the cafeteria and said to her, "This summer I get to wear girl clothes."

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Tiny Dancer

About seven years ago, I was invited over to a former students' house by her mother to help the kid with an audition for a performance high school. We worked on the piece and then I hung out with the family for a little while. The youngest of the family was Kathleen. She was about three or four at the time and was an entertainer. She danced the whole time I was there while her family laughed and applauded.

Fast forward to the present--Kathleen is now in the 4th grade. She is very shy.

She tried out for the talent show last week. She danced. It was B-O-R-I-N-G. No energy. Nothing.

Afterwards, I pulled her aside and reminded her of that time I came over to her house. (She remembered it--right down to the reason I was there--to help her sister with acting.) I reminded her of how much fun she would have while she was dancing for her family. I told her that she needs to bring that fun to the talent show.

Yesterday, she came to rehearsal and said that she was using a different song. I was like, "Cool, let's see it".

BLEW ME AWAY! She looked like a 10 year old Paula Abdul. She tore it up! All of the kids screamed when she finished. I was amazed. All I could say was, "WOW!"

Friday, April 11, 2008

The Jacket

Xavier just moved to our school with only a month and a half left. He is FULL of anger. His teacher said that when she tried to talk to his dad, HE was full of anger as well. I talked to Xavier and he told me that his little brother and sister spend every day at home tearing up all of his stuff--including his XBox. After he told me that, here's what I said to him:

Dude, I'll bet you can't wait 'till you grow up and get to move out of the house. You know, the ticket out of town is COLLEGE! You can't come to school with all this anger. You will never learn enough to get to college.

You know when you get to school on a cold day how you take off your jacket? Well, you need to take off your anger just like that. When you get out of the car in the morning and wallk into the school, I want you to take that anger off--just like a jacket.

Good Little Garbage Cans

I was having trouble getting some 2nd graders to respect their teacher:

You know when a garbage collector comes down the street, do you think he wants to see all of the cans kicked over and the trash spilled all over the street? NO!! He wants to see all of them nicely lined up for his truck with the lids closed and the trash all inside the cans.

When your teacher comes to school, she wants to see all of you in nice straight lines with your mouths closed or if you are talking, you should be saying nice things to each other--not spewing garbage all over the room by using ugly words!

Monday, April 07, 2008

Koby Almost Cursed

We were playing an april Fools game where one person stands behind the person who is "it" and says, "April fools" and the person who is "it" will try to guess who it was.

Well, Koby (3rd grade) was mad that someone guessed his voice and almost shouted out the twelve letter word that begins with M and ends in R. He actually got out the word "mother" before I stopped him. He was shocked that the word had even come that close to being said. I said to him, Koby I am ashamed that you would even think about saying that--especially at school! What would your mom do if she heard you say that?" Koby said, "She would turn me into a GHOST!"

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Mr. Prince

There is this kid in 4th grade and his last name is Prince--he is anything but a prince. He is always in trouble. I got a note from him today:

Dear Mr. Bowers,
Thank you for being such a wonderful teacher this intire school year. You've tauht us some prettey fun, funny, and cool stuff. I also wan't to say thank you for helping me with my anger problems and my temper, I'm doing so much better now.


P.S. Happy teaching!!!

I asked his classmates if he really was doing a better job, and they actually said that he was! We'll see how long it lasts. I hope it lasts a long time, he is a neat little guy.

April Fools 2008

I was ready this Year:

"Hey Mr. Bowers, what's that on your head!?"

MR. BOWERS: Oh, that's a spider. He always climbs up there on April fool's Day.

One kid did get me on the "Your shoe's untied" bit. My response..."Your breath stinks."

More Special Powers

It's that time of year again...that's right...it's time to find out what Jenni's Birthday wish will be! This year, she wishes to have thousands of imaginary friends. Don't worry, she says that she already has thousands of imaginary friends, but she wants thousands more! She wants a whole country of imaginary friends. By the way, last year's wish still hasn't come true, but we're not giving up!