Tuesday, February 10, 2009


Tomorrow, my student teaching Supervisor is observing me for the first time, and I'm super nervous. There are two primary reasons, I think, that are making me more anxious.

First, for the past two days the kids have been doing vocab, which is very boring but very necessary. We should have been giving them three or four words with every chapter of the book, but my CT sort of let it lapse and so did I. So now that we're finishing the book this week, I wanted to make sure that they were at least passingly familiar with the terms. The result: a huge vocab list of words for them to define. It's busywork, and boring for them, but they did okay with it. But I think it's just reinforced how ready we all are to be done with the book, so I'm afraid I'm going to have some dragging responses to the discussion tomorrow.

Second, one of my classmates was observed last week and did fantastically, as I knew she would. She's been having a really hard time with her CT, who is very demanding and critical. But my classmate is brilliant and I've always known she's going to be a great teacher. We happen to have the same supervisor, and he observed her last week. It was wonderful for her b/c he stood up for her against her Nazi CT and gave her great feedback. So now I am convinced I will pale in comparison and it makes me ridiculously nervous.

Overall, I just can't wait until this novel is finished and we've moved on to the next unit, which is poetry. At least with poetry, if the kids don't like a poem, we all know we won't be dwelling on it for weeks - and they may very well like the next poem that comes along.

Anyway, on a positive note, jellybean's most recent post gave me a trip down memory lane. My favorite author growing up was L.J. Smith (Lisa Jane Smith). She wrote books about vampires, witches, and shapeshifters which I devoured. I had every one of her books. Okay, I still have them. And I still re-read them occasionally.

While in Target a few months ago, I discovered that her Vampire Diaries series is being republished, along with her Secret Circle series (the one about witches). I was so excited that more people would be reading her work, I almost started crying in the store. Yes, I am emotionally attached to my favorite books!

See, the thing is that L.J. Smith wrote these books back in the early 1990s (when I was prepubescent and it was acceptable for me to be reading young adult novels). I read Vampire Diaries first. It originally had four books, and I remember buying them one at a time and agonizing over when I would have all four. And then I promptly proceeded to read them - literally - to tatters. Then I discovered The Secret Circle trilogy. Tatters again. Her other series are The Forbidden Games (the third book in this trilogy takes is set in an alternate world of Kennywood, the amusement park in Pittsburgh), and then Dark Visions. Yes, I own every book. Finally, she started The Night World series. There are 9 Night World books, and the last one was published in 1998.

1998 is the year I graduated from high school. Needless to say, by this time I was somewhat ashamed of my rabid following of this author, but she was so good I couldn't give her up. And the Night World series was setting up for an apocalyptic climax. I couldn't wait for the last book to be published.

But it never was. L.J. Smith fell off the face of the earth. I looked for the books every where, I googled her and found a fan website that said that they thought Smith was very ill. I don't know if this is true or not, but the point is that she disappeared without ever having her last book of the series published.

Now do you see why I was on the verge of tears when I saw her books re-published a few months ago? LOL.

So she's back. She even has some new short stories on her website. And she's writing a fifth Vampire Diaries book! So I would recommend to all of you to snatch up her books while you can. The format is different - the series are split differently. I think both The Vampire Diaries and The Secret Circle are being published in two books as opposed to four and three. Heck, I'm such a freak that I'll probably buy them in the new format, too. Plus, my old copies are just that - old. I don't want them to fall apart on me!

I will leave you with one of my favorite lines from one of her books - a line that I scribbled onto every notebook, binder, and looseleaf paper I could find while I was in high school

"You don't love a person because they're beautiful. You love them because their heart sings a song only you can hear." ~ Lisa Jane Smith


Vegas Princess said...

That is an awesome quote!

I can't believe I never heard of these books when I was growing up! I would have loved them!! I guess I was too engrossed in V.C.Andrews at the time. Us an those wacky initaled authors! :)

I am going to Borders to snatch up the first two Vampire Diaries book ASAP. They sound right up my alley. And now that you have mentioned there are other series about witches I will get those too because, hey, I love them all!

And an alternate Kennywood? How awesome is that!! DO you know I was thinking the other day how incredible cool it would have been if we figured out you and I had bumped into one another there in one of my many trips to that park in my youth? How cool would that have been! :)

Oh and I am glad your teaching is going good. I knew you would be awesome.

P.S. Do you belong to Goodreads.com? Because you so need to join all us bookworms on there.

Robin said...

Sarah......your post makes me miss you so much. Your love of books and your new found passion for teaching is so exciting to read about. I miss you and want to come drink wine in the spring and catch up. Miss you lots and I am sure you're rocking out your evaluation. Go Team 3!

Steelers Wine Girl said...

VP - I also went through a VC Andrews phase but was eventually grossed out by all of the ridiculous incest and had to stop reading them, LOL. And I very well may have been the only person reading LJ Smith's books, which is probably why she stopped writing!!!
I can't wait for you to read them and tell me what you think.

I know, I always think of our potenial missed encounters too :) You need to find that series on Amazon and find them b/c you'll love it. I think of the book every time I'm at the park and no one else gets it!

Rah - I so miss you too! I've been loving reading your blog but we need a reunion. It has been a ridiculously long time since we were together!

Courtney said...

I ditto VP saying you need to be on GoodReads. Add me if and when you're on there.

I get really attached to books, too. I remember one that I read in fifth grade called Don't Hurt Laurie. I remember it being memorable because the librarian wouldn't let me take it home to read it without my mom's permission because it was about abuse.