alphabet, helicopters, and XANADU

SO guess what happened to me yesterday???


ok nope that isn't it...
in the words of one of my FAVE kinder teachers
what the french fry YO?!?!?

but before I tell you the story let me tell you about this writing strategy thingy I learned today... I am sure it has been around for a LONG time and a day
it is new to me and maybe it is new to one of YOUS GUYS... ( I meant to put that)

first have the kiddos write the entire alphabet at the top of their paper
then tell them they can only start their sentences with words that begin with the letters at the top of their page... once they use that letter they have to cross it out and can't use it again....
so I am going to practice that right now in the story about the lockdown...
and I am going to write it in FARLEY BLOG style with total disregard for proper sentence anything... so if this offends you I am sorry and believe me I don't teach FARLEY BLOG style to my kiddos... we have important state tests to pass (sarcasm)


Yesterday... my school went on a lock down!!!
At first...I was semi OK with it because our FAB nurse, Frenchie, had filled me in on what was going on.  Mrs. Principal came on the intercom and told us we were going to do a practice lock down.  The kids thought it was because we had 3 stray dogs running loose before school started AND I let them continue to think that incorrect assumption. Seconds turned into minutes as I began the lock down procedures.  Just as I got my class settled into silent reading time...we heard SIRENS and HELICOPTERS. OF COURSE this was the end to SILENT reading time and the kids started speculating "why would helicopters be needed for 3 stray dogs?????"  I was starting to get nervous too...especially when the helicopter were obviously circling our school. "FARLEY!!!" I said to myself... don't freak out. What I have not told you is I AM SUPER AFRAID of big flying things flying over my head... mostly airplanes and helicopters and blimps (but when am I really around blimps???  BUT I am sure if there was one around me I wouldn't want it flying/floating above my head.) Quickly I quieted them down again... just in time to hear the helicopter STOP!!! Propellers were whirling and stirring and the sound was reDONKUlous!!! Right away I ran to the window to peak out... the grass was swirling (like you see on the movies) and the ceiling was undulating (like you see in shotty construction).  VERY FREAKED out now I kept looking for the FREAKIN copter... I couldn't see it!!! Don't think I forgot we were under lock down and I shouldn't be peaking out of my blinds BUT at that moment I am pretty sure I could have taken down the HULK because I was so CRAY CRAY that a HELICOPTER was hovering above my classroom!!!! By now the class was SILENT... their eyes were like WHAT THE FRENCH FRY YO!!! Concerned that my fear was now showing on my face... I walked to my desk on the opposite end of the room and started putting grades into the computer.  Right away the kids continue to silently read (OK OK some of them were NOT reading but for the most part 95% of my kiddos were doing what they should have been doing HELICOPTERS HOVERING have magical powers like that!!!!))) Under the magical powers I continue to put grades in and then the hovering slowly disappears!!! Hours passed and I had all my papers graded and in the computer and I had my desk organized and my kiddos were well into the 533rd chapter of their novels.  Next thing you know... the principal announces that if the kids need to be released to go to the bathroom they need to be escorted by the instructional aides located in each hall.   EVERY single hand went up!!! ZONKERS!!! Good grief ... I sent them out one at a time and they came back with the most absurd stories of what was REALLY going on!!! Really some of the stories were insane!!! Xanadu ended after about 2 hours and I was GLAD....Let me tell you what really happened MAYBE... rumor has it a boyfriend got cray CRAY and broke into girlfriend's home and girlfriend's dad met boyfriend's head with a baseball bat... boyfriend escaped... girlfriend's dad called PoPo and the chase was on!!!

and that my friends is the end of my  alphabet lock down story...
I am pretty sure I got all the letters...
but if I missed one... I still get an A for effort...

hope you could get a good laugh and a good writing strategy
and I know XANADU was like some great and wonderful thing RIGHT? it was with Olivia Newton John and all so probably it was some good thing...
BUT now that I think of it...
wasn't there roller skates and metallic tights and sweatbands ALL over that movie...
OK well then YES it was SCARE-EEEEEEEEE like XANADU!!!



  1. Glad you are alright. We had a real one last year 2 days after we had a practice - scary stuff!

  2. We've been on lock down at dismissal - hand to hand every child - aaghh. The craziest oone was when we were in the middle of Jump rope for Heart - over half the school outside jumping rope -when a "robber" went running through our campus!!! The cop following him on foot WITH GUN DRAWN was also the 2nd grade "mystery reader" (a monthly community member) the previous week. Lots of shouts of "Hi, Officer ___" in the middle of "EVERYONE GET DOWN" My Principal's pleas of getting a fence around our campus were finally realized not long after "the incident". And my latest fun episode of lock down was from a crazy rain event/tornado threat and the power went OUT - for over an HOUR - the first week of KINDERGARTEN - and our emergency lights FAILED - and I taught by flashlight app. Yes I am innovative HA:) I really thought there would be more lock down stories, I'm looking forward them - but I don't wish any more for you, especially with big scary helicopters!

  3. scary! We've had plenty of scares like this :) Love the idea of the ABC's. Great suggestion. I definitely need to teach this to my second graders.

  4. SO scary!! Glad everyone is allright. We had one my first year teaching (pretty rough part of town) where the bank next door got robbed & the robber ran through the playground WHILE WE WERE ON IT & the police came chasing, guns drawn, yelling for us to get in the building! Wow, good times...and as a first year teacher, I was completely freaked out. Thanks for the story & for the great writing tip. I love it! :)

    First Grade Fairytales

  5. OMG, you had me cracking up!! Loved the story, glad everything is okay and you played it cool girl. Way to keep the kids from freaking!

  6. Practice definetly does not make perfect in the lock down rule of life! My first lockdown was pretty tame compared to some of ya'lls....we had a disoriented car crash victim wander into our school building covered in blood. He was unable to communicate intelligably. After rescue squads and dogs were called in and about two hours passed, they finally located his vehicle in a wooded ravine and pieced together the story! Strange but just never know!

  7. Nuts!!!! I would have freaked......we had that 2 years a lock down (on the down low) as not to freak the kids.....then the sound of a know that's never a good combo...I watch cops! I know! lol! Glad it all turned out ok for you all:) Love the writing idea and can't wait to try it! Guess what came in the mail yesterday?????? The swapping dad for goldfish book! Can't wait to read it to my kiddos:)

    4th Grade Frolics

  8. All I have to say is W.O.W! Cray Cray for sure :)

    The Learning Tree

  9. We've had that happen before as's crazy the things the kids come up with as to what it happening outside the room! We also house the BD program for all the 5th and 6th graders in our district so we have had several occasions over the years where we are confined to our rooms because someone his running wildly through the halls and can't be restrained....ahhhh, the joys of teaching;-)

    Super Pig and Tyrant King

  10. WOW what a CRAZY day but I love the strategy. I'll have to pass it on to my friends in big kid teaching land.
    Glad everything turned out ok.

    ✰ Stacy

    Simpson Superstars

  11. Farley, I am so glad you survived and I am strangely jeolous that you got your grades inputted. :/ I love your writing strategy! How fun!

  12. Holy cow, what a day you poor thing!!! I'm so glad everything was ok--and you totally crack me up with your storytelling!

  13. I like that ABC strategy!! And nothing like a practice-lockdown-turned-real to rattle your day!
    A Cupcake for the Teacher

  14. OMG, that is so crazy! I've never had a real lock down (crossing fingers and thanking God), but I have a funny story from lock down drills. When my school was built, it was an open school concept. Meaning you only had 3 walls (or maybe even less), and you could look across the way and into the other classes around your center area. There are tons of temporary walls that have been there for many years, but most classes still didn't have doors when I started 7 years ago.

    My first year was in 1st grade, and we actually had one of the rare doors, so lock down drill was reasonable. However, after that I moved to 4th grade in a room without a door. When I first prepared them for the lock down drills (we turn off the lights and hide under our desks), they looked at me like I had two heads! "Mrs. Dalton, do you really think that's going to protect us?" Well, no, but what else can we do? Thank God we actually got doors by the end of that year!

    Oh, and I love the ABC strategy. I'm going to have to try it!

    Don't Let The Teacher Stay Up Late

  15. Love the story..and the writing strategy!
    Rock Stars At Work

  16. Love your ABC writing strategy....I am going to try that with my students. NOw..just for the record....I do not care to try your lockdown far we have only had a lockdown issue once in my 10 years of teaching....for this I am ever so happy!

    Mrs. B's Nook

  17. When I came back Thrusday, they were all telling me about the lockdown and I mentioned I saw it on the news while I was recooping on the couch. ONe of them wanted to know if I knew the real story about what happened. lol Such drama queens and kings!

  18. OMG! Glad it wasn't something more serious. That said, I have a new favorite saying. "What the french fry? Yo!" Thanks!

  19. YIKES!!!
    At my previous school we had a variation we had both lock down (cant leave the room) and lock in (cant leave the building, but can move around within the building) We once had SWAT blue team outside our classroom window across the street for some drug arrest! Once the bike cops arrested a guy using our playground fence. We had the HARDEST time keeping the kids away from chit chattin w/ the "bad" guy! the playground fence you arrest this guy!! Sheish!

    The chase on the playground w/ children .....Phew....stressful! Just makes me thankful that my life is "normal" and "safe" yet it makes me sad that it is someone elses life!! AND we wonder why just coming to school to LEARN would be sooo hard! HELLO ....the po po are chazin ya! lol.


  20. Oh dear!! That would have freaked me out for sure! Helicopters are SO loud! My first year of teaching, we had a real lock down. The father of a kid in MY CLASS abducted the mom ((crazy divorce situation...)) and then they couldn't find him and thought that he would come and try to find the daughter. I was in the middle of a read aloud when the principal and custodians came into my room, closed all of my blinds, and checked the locks on my doors. To make a long story short, they caught him and he now is serving life in prison. I HATE lock downs to this day!!! Hope you're having a relaxing weekend!

    EduKate and Inspire

  21. I know your day was scary and stressful, but the way you tell it is hilarious! I love the story writing strategy! With your fear of flying things, I don't guess that you would have been as excited as my daughter and I were about the blimp that flew over our school about a month ago. We live in a very small town, so this was something that you don't see everyday! I'm glad you and your kiddos are ok.

    Teaching Fourth

  22. We've only had practice lock downs but our kiddos have to squeeze into a corner of the room, away from doors and windows. Computers, smartboards, etc...have to be turned off so there would be no grade entering for me. I have to sit on the floor with the kiddos...2 hours...ohhh my aching bottom!

  23. Oh, and since I live in a SMALL town with hardly any crime (ok...the odd bike gets stolen but we once went away for a week with the door to our house open----literally---someone had taken the dog out for a pee and forgot to close it). When we got home and I noticed the door open, I wasn't worried about anything missing....I was freaking because I thought there might be a squirrel or a skunk in my house!

    Back to the lock down thing...we tell the kids that it might happen because there is a wild animal (like a moose or a bear) and we have to stay in the room to be safe. Of course, our children have heard the horror stories on tv so they know worse can happen...just hopefully never in our town :)

    OK...I know you are thinking it...I'm from Canada :)

  24. OMG! That reminds me of one of my first days subbing. We had a code red (which is the equivalent of your lock down)and when I peeked out (yep, just like you I knew I wasn't supposed to but did it anyway!) what did I see? A full on SWAT team across the street from my class!!!! Some guy had robbed the corner store and then hidden out in the house next to the school. Yowzers!

    You crack me up. Thanks for being you!

  25. Wow! That was a crazy story and especially great in the ABC writing style. I am one of your newest followers. I am new to blogging and would love if you could check out my blog. Also, your looky lou link doesn't said the page doesn't exist? Is it just me that it's not working for? Anywhoo! Have a great day!!!!

    Kelly Nelson
    Owl Inspire You

  26. always have me laughing!
    Love thte ABC writing idea..and are you doing an October CURRENTLY?

  27. I've had a few lockdowns in my career. The craziest happened when I was teaching at the largest school in the city and it was under construction, so we had 22 portables scattered all over the field. The school was so large that we had a separate kindergarten recess as we had over 120 kindergarten students. So during Kindergarten Recess there was a police chase which ended beside my school because as the stolen car turned infront of the school, the transmission dropped out and the car bottomed out in the middle of the road. So the men in the car got out and ran across the field, right through all the kids. The police pulled up right behind and pulled out their guns and ran through the kids in pursuit. Needless to say the school went into lockdown. Craziness.


~ I {PuFFy} HeArT comments!!!! THANK YOU!!!