aaaand Big Time Literacy's July blogging challenge linkups!
I decided to do the Top Five Things I'm Looking Forward to for the Next School Year (in no particular order :)
-Decorating my classroom-Yes, I have also been looking at teacher blogs for inspiration :) My favorite first grade classroom that I've seen is Jennifer's from First Grade Blue Skies! First of all, her room is HUGE, so I know mine won't be able to hold as much cute stuff. But I love the way she used blue all throughout the background--I intend to do something similar with lavender. I think I've also settled on a theme of owls and birdies. Something like this:
-Getting to know all my new families-I was at my last school for 7 years, and I had a wonderful relationship with the families there. I knew the parents, the siblings, the cousins, the grandma's, the babysitters, etc. But now I get to start all over again at my new school! My goal is to meet all the families before parent/teacher conferences and establish a partnership with them so that we are all working towards a common goal. The easiest way to start is to introduce myself and be available in the mornings and after school when they drop off and pick up their children. A little 3-5 minute chat goes a long way to establish trust and familiarity!
-Being a super-organized, lean,
Every year I start out getting to school at least 1.5 hours early and getting ready to start my day...but then around October I start sleeping in a little more, skipping breakfast, and drinking coffee all morning until lunch. Then I crash around 1:45pm and feel icky the rest of the day Well no more, not this year! I am going to get to school early everyday, stay maybe an hour after, and then hit the gym for yoga or light weights before dinner. I've decided that I hate doing aerobic workouts. So just something light to get the blood flowing, stretch and decompress from work, and then shower and dinner. At least that's my plan...
-Being a classroom teacher- I guess I should have started here! When I first went back to school to become a teacher, my goal was to be a self-contained bilingual teacher in my own classroom, but it just did not work out that way. My first job was a nightmare and I ended up resigning my position at Thanksgiving (but that's...another story...). Then I subbed for a couple of years in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs while I finished my Master's, getting experience in different school settings until I was hired at my current district. But I was hired as a resource ESL teacher (read: pull-out), which was the opposite of what I wanted to do! I just didn't see the point of pulling out students who already spoke English to give them a 30-minute ESL lesson that was not related to what they were doing in class. So I s-l-o-w-l-y instituted the push-in model, which then turned into the co-teaching model for ESL Science and Social Studies. It was great, and our students were making academic gains at a monster speed! But, given the current state of public education, the powers that be saw it fit to eliminate my position (for no good reason) and move me to a different school...I was sad, but in the end, this is what I wanted! I believe the universe has more good things in store for me, and life has a funny way of working out....
So, I am reading all of your linked blogs, but please share what you are looking forward to most this year in the comments!