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Karaoki and Other Disasters

This weeeeeek will go down in the history of my life as one of the longest on record. Disaster precipated disaster. I have never been given so many new tasks with so little direction in such a small amount of time.

Monday I was given paperwork at 8 o’clock in the morning which needed to be returned by noon — and I had to figure out how to complete it while teaching. Tuesday and Wednesday, for my afterschool tutoring group, I was handed incomplete lesson plans and few of the necessary supplies. After every tutoring session I am required to post online, but my password wasn’t agreeing with the program. Midweek the principal came to ask how the new writing program was going — and all of the 5th grade teachers (myself included) were surprised to hear there was one …

On top of all that, I was asked to direct an event for 175 kids — Karaoke. Noise. Mayhem. Madness. And around 230 kids arrived. We scrambled to find snacks for all the extra kids — my car trunk was opened and all the Sunday School snacks poured forth (hmmm, I wonder if I could get in trouble for feeding them “church” food?) and kindergarten opened their larder. The more difficult problems to solve were the two karaoke machines, one room, 200+ kids, and no microphones ….

Still, a good time was had by all. The teachers at my school are awesome. We all looked around, took stock of what we did have, and made a party happen. I have to tell you, you haven’t lived until you’ve sung, Hakuna Mata, and then done the Hookey-Pokey with a couple hundred assorted kids.

Quilly is the pseudonym of Charlene L. Amsden, who lives on The Big Island in Hawaii. When she is not hanging out with Amoeba, she is likely teaching or sewing. Or she could be cooking, taking photographs, or even writing. But if she's not doing any of that, she's probably on Facebook or tinkering with her blog.


  1. Of course you were called a Hero for this too, right Quilly? πŸ™‚

    Your comment about the church food made me laugh. Nice wit.

  2. Again, this is why I am not a teacher….but it sounds like people give you tasks because they figure you can do it like you are a magician or something….kind of like when my kids ask me to find something I have never seen before.

  3. Sar — I am not a hero. I am a competant adult with an over-developed sense of responsibility. Seven teachers stepped up to make this event work, and yesterday one of the other 5th grade teachers was the shining hero, because she put her P.E. experience into play and organized a milling mob of kids into a manageable, singing and dancing team. The kids are still talking about it today and I just had to ask Jake to stop singing during the morning news broadcast.

  4. Karoke is awesome, I can just imagine how much fun it was with a bunch of kids…to be honest, I bet it sounded a whole lot better than most of the adult karokes I’ve been to.

  5. Whew… you deserve a glass of wine and a brownie! Since I can’t sing, I avoid Kareoke like the plague, but it would be fun with a bunch of kids.

  6. Silver — I did not sing. I can carry a tune but my vocal cords were stressed as a teen and they give out in moments when I sing.

    Kat — wine & a brownie — at the same time? Proably not. Thanks.

    I’ll take the wine and a bubble bath, though ….

  7. Quilly, you continue to amaze me. I don’t know how, after all this time, you haven’t discovered these corollaries to Murphy’s Law:

    Virtue is its own punishment.

    If you do something right once,
    someone will ask you to do it

    Forget the poncy preachers in their fancy robes. I know who the true saints are. And they usually deny the label.


  8. Al — insanity is a natural state for a school teacher

    Nessa — kindergartners with quivering lips inspire one to greater heights.

    OC — perhaps because when I come off brilliant I still tend to consider it luck.

  9. OC — after all this time — that’s the second crack you’ve made about my age in two days ….

    Amy — you know the part where it goes, “you put your whole self in …?” That would be me.

  10. i’m exhausted just reading about this event. and more than a little impressed.

    it sounds like the kind of thing i’d rather read about than attend. well… sort of. actually, it sounds like a lot of fun, and a terrifically memorable day for those kids. well done, Quilldancer! xox

  11. it is hard to have so much going at the same time and with little or no support. yet, you as always manage not only to do it but to do it and have fun and help others in having fun. you are the half full glass of water in all and that is another wonderful, life long lesson you are giving those kids of yours.

    sorry for the overload. thank you for what you do, how much of it you do do and how well and with much love you do it with.

    God Bless my sweet.

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