Slice of Life Day 27: Failure to Connect

11454297503_e27946e4ff_hDuring the month of March I am blogging daily with others in the Slice of Life Daily Challenge. Thank you  TaraAnnaDanaStacey,  Betsy  and Beth at Two Writing Teachers for providing and supporting this place to learn and grow. Read more slices here.

After school.The class is relatively clean and it’s quiet. Perfect. Prime time for responding, writing, tweeting.

Pull out the computer.

Internet not responding.

Try again.

Same thing.

Change wireless connections. Nada.

Hard wire.

It just spins.

My hands are tied. Everything I need access to is on the web.  Can’t look at student work, it’s on the blog. No reading blogs, writing, tweeting.  Serious irritation.

A year ago, I wouldn’t have even known the internet was down. Last year I wasn’t anywhere near twitter or blogs; my kids’ work was on paper, in notebooks..

Social media and technology in the classroom has opened my world and lightened the load of papers I take home. Opportunities and connections are only limited by the amount of sleep I want to deprive myself of.

But when it doesn’t work, how do I work?

I sit back. The phone. Access. (Can you hear my sigh of relief?)

My teaching partner walks in to tell me the office just put the service call in.  He laughs at me. Just yesterday he came in I had an iPad in one hand, phone in the other.

My after school students are reading, taking this all in.  One looks up from her book and says, “What’s the problem Mrs. Harmatz you were born before the internet, you should be fine.” She laughs. “We’re the ones who are suppose to be all into the internet we’re fine just reading books.”

So wise. I love these kids. They are readers of books with pages made of paper and ink. They are happy just to have space, quiet and time with magazines and books surrounding them.

Old school I think. I open up a document on Microsoft word and start to type.

4:30 rolls around, TCRWP chat time PST. I pull out the  phone and introduce myself. The tweet goes through. I see the first question. and then, a spinning wheel — no tweets loaded.

Really? You’ve got to be kidding me, I say out loud.

My students laugh at me.

I wait. Keep trying other ways. I walk outside, thinking maybe it’s the room. It’s got to come back, I think.

“Ha!  Look at Mrs. Harmatz trying to get reception.”

5:00. Still nothing. Ok that’s it. I’m done. “Kids, sorry I gotta go.”

They look at me. I’m embarrassed to tell them the truth. I think they know.  They pick up and say goodbye. I’m a bit guilty but they are the ultimate benefactors, I rationalize.

Out the parking lot, up the street, and into a local strip mall’s parking lot. Check for signal. Yes!

I’m back.


Re reading this slice, I wonder, do I need a social media 12-step program?  I’m probably asking the wrong audience, but perhaps there is a balance. Anyone?