Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Last Wordless Wednesday in September!

Hi there, I remember you! I'm talking to both you the blog and you the readers: I've missed you. But I'm back again to link up with Sugar and Spice for Wordless Wednesday:

First, my week thus far:

(do you ever feel this way? Full-on survival mode in September)


AND no specials on Wednesdays...but...BUT...BEST. DAY. EVER. so far this year!

(don't I look quite fetching in my high heels?)

My students are great. They are great kids and great students, and I am blessed to be their teacher. They are the only sane part of my day, and no specials means I get to spend the whole day with them. Laughing, learning, creating, collaborating, sharing, singing, playing, and growing. I'm growing with them too as a teacher and as a mom and as a human being. 

So, I went from no words, to a few words, to lots of words, sorry.

But, life is pretty, pretty, pretty, pretty good, actually.

Enjoy your Wednesday!

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Sunday Morning Letters, Cold Weekend

It's still Sunday and I already finished my coffee, but I'm going to link up with Michelle at Big Time Literacy for Sunday Morning Letters!

Dear Itchy Nose,

I sincerely hope that you are a weird late-season allergy visitor and not a new round of the common elementary teacher cold. You have been bothering me and making me sneeze since Friday afternoon, and I don't mind because I don't feel sick otherwise. Please just keep your cousin, Sore Throat, away from me OK?

Take care,
Frazzled Teacher

Dear September,

Please take it easy on me. You have been kicking my butt so far with all of the beginning of the school year activities and I am ready to put you behind me! This week's first round of Parent-Teacher Conferences is going to be another endurance test for me, but after that you will ease up, right?

Beat it,
Grumpy Teacher

(This is Bob Cratchit, how I feel sometimes)

Dear Tentative Agreement,

It was not your time to be yet. I hope that after tomorrow's meeting we can go back to the other party and re-create you for the good of all the teachers. Please come back to us soon!

A Hopeful Employee

(Courtesy of IBEW)

Dear Riot Fest,

It's official, I am old. When I first heard back in April that you were bringing The Cure and Social Distortion to Chicago, I almost peed my pants with excitement as I jotted down it in my calendar! Not only were you too expensive for my little entertainment fund, but there was no. way. I was going out in the cold and rain to dance in the mud after a LOOOONG week of school. Sigh. Fade to me listening to Disintegration on my CD player.

When did this happen,
A former New Wave Enthusiast
(Oh yes, I used to party like these guys :)

Dear Teacher Blogs,

I love you. You make me feel like I am part of something bigger, and you remind me that there is more to what we are doing than the countless meetings, assessments, and data. I love getting new ideas from you, and I love sharing my little corner of the first grade world with all of you!

Much love,

That's it for this edition of letters. I will post again this week to update you on the happenings of my classroom!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Tech Kick-off 2014

Hahaha maybe not quite as exciting as football season, but pretty darn close if you ask these 6-year-olds:

Yesterday we looked up our houses on Google Earth and traced a pathway to school using the street-view feature (sooooo cool!). In order for this to happen for everyone, each student had to practice writing, saying, and typing their address for the last two weeks--this is really challenging stuff when you're in first grade! Oh, did I mention it was all in English? We did this as part of our first unit in ESL/Social Studies, "All About Me/My Community."

It was great watching them help each other and encouraging each other not to give up when they got overwhelmed with all the typing involved--a number, a street name, and a city?? Yikes!

My heart. I love these kids.

They've been learning how to use the laptops to access the internet and log in to school websites for the last two weeks and...the students were able to take their 1:1 Macbooks home today! Cue 16 squealing first-graders excited about doing homework on their computers....

After the madness that was Parent Orientation Night last week and all of the behind-the-scenes work that goes into launching the school year, this week has been much more manageable and enjoyable. We are settling into our little routines like readers workshop and writers workshop, and I've even had time to do a couple of running records! Whew.

 I may just survive.

Happy Wednesday,

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Wordless First Wednesday in Spetember

Just about ready for Parent Orientation Night tomorrow (Thursday)....

Oooops my water bottle made it into this picture

Las Matemáticas

Morning meeting and Calendar area, Lunch Choices activity from Haley at My Silly Firsties

The classroom is as neat as it is going to get now that my little ones are really living in our space!

Now go link up with Miss DeCarbo at Sugar and Spice so I can see your classroom pics!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Big Time Literacy Letters

Even though it is not Sunday morning, I am still going to link up with my friend Michelle over at Big Time Literacy for her semi-weekly letter-writing partay!

Dear Blog,

I have been neglecting you for the last week or so. I have loved you from the moment that I created you, but lately there are just not enough minutes in my day to eat lunch, hydrate, or visit you. I am very sorry for ignoring you. You have been very kind to me as summer came to an end, and I know that you will continue to encourage me to post as we ease into Fall. You are so patient with me.

Thank you,
Your Frazzled Creator

Dear New Classroom,

I know I told you that you would be ready to host people last week, and I know that I lied. I didn't mean to, I fully intended to finish dressing you when I said that. This Thursday is parent orientation night, so you will definitely be ready to greet everyone as of Wednesday night. I promise. And I mean it this time.

Your Busy Designer

Dear Classroom Twitter Account,

I know we just met, but I feel like I've known you for years! It's because I had such a good relationship with your sister, Personal Twitter Account. Lately she and I have not had time to get together, but I know she remembers me. I am more concerned with you and I getting this relationship off the ground. I think I've tweeted 2 or 3 times, but the powers that be expect us to spend more time together. I look forward to working with you and meeting your Tweeps!


Dear Tentative Agreement,

I was excited to read you this weekend and note that we were able to get a raise after all! I hope that at tomorrow's meeting the members all vote to ratify you, because Mama's gotta pay her September rent! I know that employers don't just hand out contracts out of the kindness of their hearts, and I know that you are the result of countless hours of work and time away from loved ones. Thank you for coming into my life.

A Proud Union Member

Dear Week Ahead,

I'm coming for you, whether you want to or not!

Weekend Me

Haha well, that was super-fun and much easier than I thought it would be! Kudos to Michelle again for hosting and for encouraging the curation of this little corner of the blogging world.


Currently in September...

Can you believe it is September already? What happened? Yikes, August you snuck out when I wasn't looking!

A new month means it's time for Farley's Currently linky! Here are the (very fair, very simple) rules:

And now without further ado, here is yours truly's Currently:

Listening: so there's these weird "epic" music mixes that people have made and uploaded to Youtube, and they have music from the soundtracks of movies like Avatar and Lord of the Rings, etc. I've gotten used to having it on it the background and zoning out while we work! It's pretty funny, but totally gets you in the zone.

Loving: No kids for the weekend + extra long holiday weekend = time to clean every room with no one to make a mess as soon as you have finished picking everything up! #winning

Thinking: So in addition to the lesson plans that I will get to some time tonight I have made usernames and passwords for my students to log on to the websites that our district has purchased licenses for; updated my district webpage that is not even linked to my class for some reason; signed up for  a PD session for MyOn, read through my contract that we will be voting to ratify tomorrow (woot!), wrote my professional goals to submit to my principal (jealous? yes, you should be), thought about the presentation that I need to create for Parent Orientation night on Thursday, and generally freaked out a little at the thought that there are not enough hours in the day.

I'm telling you,

Wanting: this is why I would want an extra day this weekend! I got so much accomplished with one extra day, just imagine what I could do with 2!

Needing: I've gone soft, like Rocky after he beat Apollo Creed and rested on his championship title and shifted his focus to the car dealership. I've been putting out fires and trying to keep my head above water since last May when I found out I was being moved to a new school. I need to get back in the gym if I'm going to face Mr. T this fall--my prediction? PAIN.

3 Trips: Hawaii is my dream destination. I want to see volcanoes and lush tropical forests. I want to enjoy pristine beaches and swim in salt water. I want to eat roast pig and pineapple everything!

France, of course, ever since I took French in high school and couldn't afford the summer trip with my class. I want to see monuments and museums but also eat at a sidewalk cafe and walk around the Champs-Elysee! I want to be a tourist in France, s'il vous plait.

California wine country-Napa, Sonoma, go up to Oregon for pinot noir. Yes, please. Two, please.

That's it for my currently! Please go visit Farley at Oh Boy 4th Grade to read other teachers' thoughts and share your own. As always, I love the comments you leave me!