I never know what the situation will be when I walk into a school. Sometimes there is a sub problem so the principal is shuffling teachers and aides to create the situation where the teachers can attend the PD I am presenting that day.
Location is always an issue. Schools don’t usually have a spare room sitting empty. I have been in a computer lab where there is no table space because laptops cover the tables. You cannot move them because the cords are duct taped to the tables. An art room is not a bad place, but the tables have not been wiped down in weeks. Dried paint, glue, and clay residue are the remnants of a variety of art projects. Or how about start in the library, then after first hour move to a classroom. Of course there are no tables, but only student desks to sit in. I am easy going, I don’t complain, I just make the best of it.
Yesterday was a new experience. I had been working with a different grade level each day, so this was the third and final day. As I prepared to get the materials out for the teachers I noticed there was something on the table. It was sticky, it needed to be gone before the teachers arrived. The workroom is right next to the room we were meeting in and it has a sink with a dishtowel on the counter. I thought I’d just dampen the corner of the towel, wipe the table down, and dry it off. As I walked into the workroom Karen, a literacy coach I work with, said, “They said there are termites all over in here, but I don’t see any.”
Those words did not make me very comfortable, so I began looking around. At first I didn’t see any. Then my eyes scanned the speckled tiled floor. The speckles were moving! “Look at the floor,” I said. “Its moving!”
“Gross!” was her reply as she quickly exited the room. Unfortunately I had to cross the space where they were running to and fro. Quickly I grabbed the towel, stepping carefully to stay away from the swarm. Needless to say, after I wiped the table, I tossed the towel to the counter well away from the pests. Soon a sign appeared on the door, Keep this door closed. Seriously, you don’t think they will escape?
After school there was no sign of the bugs but the bookcase was pulled away from the wall. It did not smell of pesticide. So what does this mean? Will they munch away all weekend undisturbed or are they gone for good? I only know I won’t be back for a month, so I hope the termites will be terminated before I return.