Thursday, January 29, 2015

Toe Squeezing

Lunch was over, I was getting tired and my head was starting to throb. Thankfully my hangry problem had been fixed. Naturally I was not in the best of moods and it seemed as if my students weren't listening to me. Was 3:15 ever going to come?
I sat at my document camera waiting for them to finish their daily language review so we could go over it. A few of them weren't picking up on my not-so-subtle hints of getting quiet and to work. My frustration was starting to become my primary emotion when I looked over at a student who had one socked foot up on his desk.
"Benjamin, where is your shoe?"
"I took it off."
"I wanted to squeeze my toes to see how it felt."

What? I couldn't help but laugh. It was the most random thing that I heard all day, yet it made since for that kid. Which by the way, I changed his name to protect the innocence of the darling dear.
I was speechless.
I was in a better mood!

(Are you wondering why there is a random picture of a kitten? Let me tell you. Google search "socked feet" and "toes" Go ahead, do it. GROSS! Both searches. So in order to get the gross pictures off of my search, I typed in the first thing that came to mind just to get the gross pictures away from me. Has nothing to do with the story, but blog posts need some sort of picture right?)

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

SOL #4 - Random Thoughts from Today

Yay for writing! Thanks to Two Writing Teachers for giving us a place to write!

I once again sat down to write and am having a hard time finding something to write about. Then I heard my own voice telling my students to just write when they complain about not having anything to journal about. Better do as I say.

Random Thoughts from Today:

  • I got a new student today. This can be such a hard thing and it does throw off the day, but one of the best parts about getting a new student is you realize how far your students have come since the beginning of the year. They know the routines and they know how things go, even when they act like they don't!
  • Sharing Taco Tuesday with a friend is better than Taco Tuesday on your own.
  • This week I sent home book orders and made a flippant comment (I tend to do that a lot) that if we had an order of $125 or more I got cool free books. I have a student who is a co-worker's daughter and mom can get her free books through her own book orders. So the daughter, turned in a book order with her own money to insist that I get free books. Made my *heart flutter* that she was so thoughtful.
Well, that's all I got. :0)

Happy Tuesday ya'll

Friday, January 23, 2015

Celebrating Writing

Celebrating two weeks ago was so successful, I wanted to celebrate again! Thanks Ruth Ayres for  having me!

This week I am celebrating writing. I often struggle with writing, both teaching it and doing it myself. I am constantly thinking about writing and what to do with it. On Tuesday I participated in Slice of Life and while reading other slices I came across Tammy's slice. She talked about how students just need to write. They need time to just write. I couldn't have agreed more and promptly started to apply this philosophy to my daily routine in my classroom.

On the first day we had a few extra minutes in class so I handed out their notebooks and told them to open to the next blank page. About five students asked what we were doing, three exclaimed that they needed a pencil, and the other few did what they were asked to do.

Looking at the clock I calculated how much time we had until the next class and told them that I wanted them to write until it was time to go.

"What do we write about?"
"Just write."
"Can I write a story?"
"Just write."
"Does it have to be true?"
"Just write." (by this point my voice is starting to get higher.)

They did NOT like this game. One student was almost in tears because he couldn't think of anything to write about. I gave him some ideas and walked away to his protests. They finally surrendered and just wrote.

My classroom was silent for fifteen minutes. Every student was writing and several of them asked to share theirs when time was up, including the student who threw the biggest fit!

Fast forward to day three of journal writing.

"Today's journal entry is going to be a picture prompt."
All the progress we had made the first day was lost.
"What do we write?"
"This is your picture prompt for your journal writing today."
"Do we describe it?"
"This is your picture prompt for your journal writing today."
"I don't get it!"
"This is your picture prompt for your journal writing today."

Finally they got the hint and began to write. Again, they were silent as they wrote and wrote and wrote. This was celebration number one. Celebration number two came when they all wanted to share their journal entries!

I LOVED what they wrote! Each student's writing was so unique and different. They were talking about their writing to each other and upset that we ran out of time to share all of them. I can't wait to hear what the others wrote and see what is to come the rest of the year.

What would you write with this picture prompt?

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

SOL #3 - Hands

Play along at Two Writing Teachers
 Happy Tuesday, that is disguised as a Monday! Best part is that tomorrow is Wednesday! I am back for Slice of Life with a much better attitude this week!
My school district was one of the lucky ones who got a three day weekend and I took full advantage of it! Friday night as soon as I said goodbye to my students I myself headed north west to Saratoga, WY to visit my dear friends Henry and Jane.
We had such a fun time the three days I was there. Lots of laughs are always to be had while, eating, playing dominoes, watching tv, or riding in the truck. More to possibly come on my weekend with pictures!
What I really wanted to write about today are hands. Hands that show so much love in their actions.

These two have given more than I think they could ever receive. Two of the most giving and generous people I know. Examples of the person I can only strive to be.

Hands that make one of the best cups of hot chocolate ever complete with marshmallows. That make you your favorite pie and an amazing dinner to feed a crowd.
The hands of a working man who takes the time of make breakfast and share a cup of coffee at the table. 

Have you been blessed by a pair of hands?

Thursday, January 15, 2015

*Heart Flutter* Friday

Looking back at the past week and the *heart flutters* it brought.
*special deliveries*
*setting new goals*
*seeing my accomplishments*
*chili with dad*
*the change of head count in my classroom*
*breakfast burrito and orange juice special delivery*
*seeing old friends and sharing memories*
*realizing that I'm going to be ok*
*getting my purchase order approved*
*my students working on the Chrome books silently for an hour straight*
What made your *heart flutter* this week?

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

SOL #2 - Road Blocks

Well, it is Tuesday again and that means time for Slice of Life over at Two Writing Teachers.
I made it my goal to participate each week in SOL. I should be in bed right now, but in order to reach this goal, here I am.

Last week, I had the issue of not knowing what to write about. Here are are again. I want to reach my goal, but if I can't find anything to write about, how am I going to succeed at this? *sigh*

Just sit down and start writing. Isn't that kind of the point?

I have such a desire to become a better writer, but have so many road blocks that I have put in front of me myself. I read all these amazing blogs and I want to be like them when I grow up!

Yet I always question how does one at my stage in life become a better writer? I have been taught and now I am the teacher and a part of me now says that I have reached my learning cap and this is what I am. But I don't think that is the case, I just need to work at it.

How do you work at it? You write.

My second road block is probably my biggest road block. I get so discouraged with my blogging especially when I don't get comments (which I am calling feedback.) I want to know that people are enjoying what they are reading. They have to be because my page view counter keeps going up, so someone out there is reading it each time I post.

I just need to get over these two big blocks.

So I will continue to write, even when I can't think of anything to write.

What do you do when you can't think of anything to write about?
Any advice on how to break through my road blocks?

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Celebrating Making It Through

I have finally decided to play along with Ruth Ayres and friends! Pretty excited!

There were lots of celebrations and *heart flutters* this past week. The one I think I am the most excited about is coming to you today from the couch.

I made it through the first week back after Christmas break! It went by quickly except for Friday afternoon, but even that I made it through!

To celebrate, I am curled up on the couch with my cup of Chai, my book and The Coffee House on Sirius XM and enjoying myself for a little bit before I tackle some projects. I don't have any set plans for the day, and that is a celebration too. It is nice to just relax and be for a bit.

What did you celebrate this week?

Friday, January 9, 2015

*Heart Flutter* Friday

Looking back at the past week and the *heart flutters* it brought.

*Pandora in the classroom and on my phone. Along with this song. Just makes me swoon....*
*Watching Friends while working out. Two miles goes pretty quickly with the gang.*
*Crockpot meals that bless friends*
*Homemade calendars from friends*
*After school snacks offered by a thoughtful student*
*Humor in the midst of learning about overwhelming state testing*
*Educational requested blog posts*
*treats left in my box at school*

What made your *heart flutter* this week?

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Slice of Life #1 - Today Was Tough

It has been months since I have participated in Slice of Life over at Two Writing Teachers.
I wanted to do so today, sat down at my computer and went blank. I couldn't think of a darn thing to write about.
About 30 minutes later I thought I could use this book to help me. Sure enough, it did!

Today was tough because                           .
Today in general wasn't too tough, but this morning was a different story. All during Christmas break I stayed up late. I slept in. I took naps. Then comes the first day back, and it is even a Monday! 
I had big plans for Monday morning. I set my alarm, two actually, and was going to get up, do a mile or two on the treadmill, my quiet times, get in early to make sure everything was in order before the students showed up.

Ask me if it happened. 

I slept through both alarms! Great way to start out the new semester. The only thing that happened that I planned for was that I got up! Thankfully I woke up on my own with plenty of time that I wasn't going to be late. Still I was disappointed in my botched plans.

Then today rolls around. Sunday night I was texting with my sister, who also teaches, and we were discussing how hard it is going to be to go back to school. I told her that Tuesday would be worse since it will be the second day back. She agreed and we headed to bed early.
Tuesday's plans looked a lot like Monday's plans. Ask me if I was successful.


My alarm went off, I heard it this time, but I changed it to an hour and a half later and went back to sleep! It was a lot harder to get up this morning than it was to get up yesterday! I can't imagine how Friday is going to look! I will be happy if I show up to school fully dressed and my hair done!
I can't really complain too much about my day. Even though I didn't get done what I wanted to get done and went for sleep instead, I didn't battle being tired at all through out the day. So I guess I needed those few extra minutes. 

Maybe tomorrow I will be successful on my morning plans!

How would you answer this question?

Friday, January 2, 2015

*Heart Flutter* Friday

Looking back at the past week and the *heart flutters* it brought.

*2015 Book List* 
*New entertainment center*
*My very own chime clock*
*Sharing vegetable beef soup with this kid*
*Gifted homemade knitted socks*
*Fun cover on a favorite book*
*Getting my dream puzzle* 

*Being inspired by Louie Zamperini by his strength and forgiveness*
*A Taco Bell picnic with my sister in the car*
*Christmas break naps*
*Finishing the first book of the new year*
*Bacon wrapped little smokies on New Year's Eve*

What made your *heart flutter* this week?

Thursday, January 1, 2015

January 2015 TBR

Can you believe that it is already 2015? It doesn't seem like 15 years ago that we were all freaking out that the world run by computers was going to end and we would all starve. Y2K....weird.

Anyway, here we are trucking along and I have a list of books for the month to keep me entertained.

I have dubbed 2015 as the year to reread some of my favorite books. It has been years since I have read some of them, and I think it is time to revisit. During the year I am going to read a mix of new books, children's books and some rereads.

I read this book a long time ago. I hope that I like it the second time. It took me awhile to get my hands on a copy and now that I have, I am headed to fight the  cholera epidemic. Added perk is that Edward Norton is in the movie!
I have never read a Stephen King book. The reason being, I am too afraid. I don't like to be scared and I have this thought in my head that Stephen King books are scary. Pet Sematary....enough said. I missed the boat when my book club read it and I have seen the movie. It wasn't scary, so I think I will be ok.

With school starting again, these might be the only two books I get to this month. 

Have you read a Stephen King book? Will I be ok?