The Way I See It – Chapter 31

Chess Club

I didn’t think that I was a clubs person.

Then my mom reminded me that I did Math Olympiad last year and MATHCOUNTS this year.

They are clubs.

So maybe I am a clubs person after all.

My social skills teacher runs a chess club.

I tried it out.

There are only six to seven students who stay for chess club.

They are all nice.

There are mostly boys who attend.

During chess club, we play chess.

I don’t always win.

I usually win, unless I am playing against Mr. Roy.

I have learned that I really need to focus on my first couple of moves, or else I will be in trouble for the rest of the game.

I brought in my Island Chess game just last week.

Everyone thought it was a combination of Halo and Dungeons and Dragons.

At least that’s what I think they said.

Only Mr. Roy got to play it, because it is a really long game.

He liked it.

Chess club is a great way to spend my time after school.

The Way I See It – Chapter 30

MATHCOUNTS

I went away on my first during-the-day school trip for MATHCOUNTS.

This is a club that I attend each week.

We do math problems.

I really like doing the problems for this club.

A few times, I don’t get the answers right.

I am learning not to be too upset about it.

I get disappointed because others are relying on me to know the answers.

Most of the other students in the club are in seventh and eighth grade.

Because I take seventh grade math, I can be in the club, although I am only a sixth grader.

The competition for my county was fun.

We went to a local college.

The food there was great.

I came in 13th place.

It was the highest for my school.

We need to practice the team competition a little better.

We did not work as a team as well as I think we should have.

Then, eight of us went to the regional competition, which was at a bigger college.

It was called a university.

We met some math professors and I now think I want to be a mathematician.

They had a cool conveyor belt that I put my dishes on after I ate lunch.

I came in 14th place.

I was the only one from my school to place, because they only gave medals to the top 20 students.

We had a pizza party to celebrate afterwards.

I think I will do this club next year as well.

I hope we learn to work better as a team.

I’m going to practice by doing Khan Academy until MATHCOUNTS club starts again next year.

I really enjoy doing math.

The Way I See It – Chapter 29

Band

I’ve been playing the clarinet since fourth grade.

I thought it would be a good choice for me, since I played the recorder in third grade and earned a black belt in “Recorder Karate.”

I was one of the first in my grade to do this.

By the end, everyone had a black belt.

That was nice.

I really enjoyed playing clarinet in fourth grade.

I also played the cello.

I didn’t like that as much.

I didn’t want to practice.

I practiced the clarinet a lot.

Sometimes, I would just go into my room and play ahead in my clarinet book.

I taught myself the notes.

My dad helped to.

He played clarinet when he was younger.

I chose not to play the cello in fifth grade.

So, my mom wanted me to try to play the alto sax, so I could be in the brass jazz band when I was older.

Clarinet cannot play in this band.

But I didn’t really like playing it.

I understood the notes well.

It took a lot of air to play it and I always felt tired afterwards.

One good effect was that it helped me with my clarinet playing.

I played stronger.

I like playing trills.

I learned how to play them from You Tube.

I just searched how to play them, and there were lots of videos to show me how.

In the beginning of sixth grade, we had to practice scales all of the time.

I liked doing this.

It made me think about the math that is in music.

I love math.

I am the only boy who plays clarinet.

Another boy plays the bass clarinet.

That’s a different instrument.

I don’t mind that I am the only boy.

I think that I am good at playing the clarinet and I like it.

That is what matters most.

The Way I See It – Chapter 28

Hallways

The hallways in middle school are unpredictable.

One time, a boy came out of nowhere from around a corner and hugged me.

Then he ran away.

I don’t think that I knew him.

That was interesting.

Another time, I was on my way to math class.

I dropped all of my books.

I was upset, so I sort of let out a cry of frustration.

Three kids were also in the hallway.

One of them said to me, “Can you make that noise again?

I’m not being sarcastic.”

The problem is I think he was being sarcastic.

They didn’t offer to help me with my books that were all over the hallway.

Instead, they laughed and then the one made this comment.

I wasn’t bothering them, so I am not sure why he had to say anything to me at all.

That upset me even more.

Mostly though, students are nice in the hallways.

They smile or let me walk with them in the morning.

I walk with different people each morning.

I hope I don’t run into that hugger or those sarcastic kids again.

The Way I See It – Chapter 27

Thanksgiving

I don’t love holidays.

It’s not that I don’t love my family – I do very much.

But holidays are usually days when I have to interact with more people than normal – people who I don’t know very well.

People who don’t “get” me.

Thanksgiving day started out ok, except for the fact that, for some unknown reason, I wasn’t allowed to play video games much.

Something about family and being thankful.

I’m very thankful for video games.

They help keep my mind busy and me entertained.

I’m really good at them and feel a lot of pride in being able to beat levels.

I don’t get upset when I lose, because I enjoy facing the challenge of solving a problem to beat the level.

I know that there’s no point in arguing, at least not today.

Oh well, at least I’m allowed to watch tv.

Somehow, this is more “socially acceptable.”

We had to drive a long way.

I wasn’t allowed to play video games in the car, so it was a really boring ride.

I fell asleep, which helped to pass the time, but it’s bad because it usually means that I will have a ton of trouble falling asleep later on.

I had a snack, as it was already almost lunchtime.

I’m not sure why on holidays we eat at different times than the regular times.

This is not a very good idea, as when I don’t eat at regular intervals throughout the day, my blood sugar drops and I get very upset.

Did I mention that I have to wear my socks ALL DAY?

They really itch!!

And our dog was slobbering on me the whole way out – gross!

When we got to my Grammie’s house, I had to work hard to remember what I practice in Speech about social skills and who I was talking to.

The tv was on, which was great, but it made concentrating on the people I was saying hi to a bit more difficult.

My mom kept pestering me to stop laying down on the couch.

I don’t understand why I couldn’t lay down on Thanksgiving.

Holidays have a lot of rules that are not that fun.

Can you believe we never ate lunch?

I had another snack, but that’s not the same.

By the time we all sat down to eat dinner, I was very agitated.

It did not help at all that I was told that turkey was on my plate.

What?

I hate turkey!

Why are we eating turkey?

I didn’t like much of the other food either.

The potatoes were ok, but then my mom tried to give me more – seriously?

I often just eat bread at family meals.

Why doesn’t anyone serve what I like to eat?

It was good that my mom let me chill out in one of the bedrooms with a tv after dinner.

But then my annoying brother came in and took the remote from me.

I called for my mom and he called me a tattle-tale.

I don’t know why I get in trouble for telling when someone else is doing something wrong.

That doesn’t make sense.

And then it was time to go.

I didn’t get to watch all of “The Incredibles,” but I don’t get upset like I did when I was younger, when things get interrupted.

It used to be so hard to stop what I was doing, what I was enjoying, without any warning.

Then came more saying good bye and “eye contact” with relatives.

Finally, it was back in the car.

This time our dog slept.

I understand that holidays are important.

I understand that my family is important. I love my family.

It’s just that on a day like today, I have to work so much harder to act “expectedly.”

It takes a lot out of me.

I hope that everyone knows that I held it together as much as possible because I love them.

The Way I See It – Chapter 26

Chorus

I was in fifth grade chorus last year.
It was fun and at the end of the year I got a solo.
I was very nervous because I don’t like to be famous or have too many people notice me.
I did very well in my fifth grade solo at the end of the year.
When sixth grade started, I had to try out for chorus, but I think everyone who tried out made it.
There are about 80 students in sixth grade chorus.
Most of the people are really nice in chorus.
I only go one time a week because I have band and seminar during that block of the day as well.
I go to chorus with other students in band who sing the same part that I do.
One day, I was running up and down on the bleachers.
Someone else in chorus said that I should stop and bumped me hard after he said it.
I started to get very upset.
I don’t understand why he couldn’t just ask me to stop.
I would have.
Why did he have to bump into me too?
Then, he said to me, “Bet you $20 that you are going to tell on me now.”
Why did he say that?
I have to admit that I probably was going to tell, because he bumped into me which was completely unnecessary.
I think that makes it a good reason to tell.
I’ve learned that I can’t always tell the teacher what is going on.
Some kids make fun of me about that.
Sometimes it makes it worse to tell.
Other times, it’s very important to tell.
I thought that this was one of those times.
So I told anyway.
I don’t think I will have to give him $20 because I didn’t shake on the bet.
When I told the chorus director, she said that I did the right thing.
I actually went to talk to the guidance counselor too.
I don’t stand near that boy on the risers anymore in chorus.
He leaves me alone.
And I learned that maybe I shouldn’t run up and down the risers because it might bother other people.

The Way I See It – Chapter 25

The Cats

My cats’ names are Molly and Hannah.

I like cats much more than dogs.

They are really cute and furry.

My dog is too, but she is also wet.

I don’t like it when she licks me.

The cats sometimes come into my room when I don’t want them to.

They eat my stuff.

I have to barricade my door closed to keep them out of my room.

When I do want them in my room, I open the door.

A minute or two later, there they are.

I pet them.

This can calm me down.

It makes me feel peaceful.

I love them.