Saturday, March 28, 2009

I survived...

...without needing any alcohol or prescriptions drugs.  Yes, I chaperoned a 6th grade social last night.  The 6th grade class has 850** students.  Thank the heavens above, not every single kid was at this event, though there were tons.  One of my jobs was to keep the kids in a "holding" area until the social actually started.  It is necessary to do this because parents drop off their kids anywhere from 1/2 hour to 15 minutes or so early and the volunteers are still setting up and getting their shit together.  So there I am, along with a few other moms and thankfully a big strong dad who stood blocking the doorway, with 100s of kids, many of whom are taller than I am.  Once 7:00 hit and we let those kids loose, it was like The Who, 1979 (a tragic event that took place here in my lovely city).  I slinked up against a wall to keep from being trampled.

From the death pit that was the holding cell area, I went to sell raffle tickets.  We were raffling off a big basket of candy, a basket of gift cards to local venues that kids like and the apple of everyone's eye, a 16GB Apple i-Pod Touch.  Whoa.  You would have thought we were giving away heroine and clean needles at that table.  I don't know why a parent would send the amounts of money they sent there kids with to an event like this.  Drinks and snacks were only .50, and the games/races (there were super sized tricycle races and several blow up type obstacle courses, lazer tag, etc.), photos, tattoos, face painting, karaoke, etc. were FREE, but there were kids carrying more money than I carry on any given day and they were spending it all on raffle tickets.  With what some kids were spending, they could have paid for a good chunk of the i-Pod Touch and not taken the risk of the raffle.  I see some kids with a serious gambling problem in their future.

All in all, it was a great success, no chaperones were injured, we made one hell of a killing selling raffle tickets and I came home with ringing ears and a dizzy head.  In addition to that, after chaperoning this event and through other school involvement, I am starting to recognize, and know by name, many parents of kids Big E is not friends with AND I am starting to recognize several kids who are not in my son's classes, which is quite an accomplishment when there are 850 kids to get to "know."

**This makes it sound like I live in a rather large suburb, but I don't. My quiet little burb has about 30,000 people. About 11,000 kids attend the school district. Our schools, however, do not have small feeder schools that feed into larger schools as the kids get older. We have a campus of school buildings. Basically, when you start kindergarten, you start in an Early Childhood Education building with preschool, kindergarten and 1st grade.  ALL kindergarteners in the district start together at that school and they move through their entire education with their entire graduating class. This is much different than when I grew up and much different than when we lived in Overland Park, KS, which had a population of 150,000 but feeder schools.  My kids elementary school there was preschool-5th grade and had a total student population of 450 kids!  Our school district works well, though, and we are currently ranked 4th in the state for quality of education.

13 comments:

  1. Well, I am impressed! I remember my parents chaperoning a dance when I was in high school. At the time I thought it was probably fun for them. Looking back, maybe not so much fun!

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  2. oh lord. it sounds like a ton of fun FOR THE KIDS. i wouldn't have held up so well, i assure you.

    i can't figure out the thinking behind spending more than say $5 on raffle tickets.

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  3. I am proud of you!

    Some of these kids hoard their lunch money and whatever allowance they may get, so when something like this comes up they hav money to spend.

    It's amazing that you made it through the night with no injuries

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  4. This is completely amazing. Not only because I come from a small town where we'd be HARD PRESSED to get an I-pod Touch as a raffle item, but because of the parents sending their kids with all that cash!

    And all that fun stuff for them to do! Holy freeholies! I'd love to be able to participate in something that huge.

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  5. AWESOME!!!! my beanies dont want me anywhere near their dances anymore I did one when abby was in 6th grade and she was mad at me for a week...

    Glad you survived

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  6. Congrats on such a successful event - 850 kids seems such a lot - About equivalent with my son's school, which is soon to grow even bigger...

    I know what you mean about giving kids too much money... We never ask our 17 year old for change from what we give him at weekends, and he seems to have accumulated a fortune over the couple of years he's been more independent at weekends... All with our knowledge of where he is, and so on...

    I like the idea of being in touch with an inner Brit! I only recently realised how differently my written voice sounds, when so many USA cousins have commented on it - Isn't it funny, when we really speak the same language?

    I hope you're having a fabulous weekend, Jo! x

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  7. Wow! That sounds like a prom in our district rather than a sixth grade dance! Glad you survived!

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  8. It honestly sounds like a blast!! You know, minus the stampede and all.

    Congratulations on being one brave (and cool) Mama! E

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  9. Nice job. Go get yourself a little thank you gift from the kids - you deserve it.

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  11. Good lord! I'm relieved you made it out of there alive! :)

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  12. That sounds like an interesting school set up. I like the idea that all the kids start off together, it probably takes some of the nervousness out of the equation as the kids move into higher grades because they already know everyone.

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  13. You're a braver woman than I!
    Pearl

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