Friday, October 25, 2013

 Five for Friday

I'm joining Doodle Bugs Teaching in her weekly linky party Five for Friday. I'll be honest with you, the first few are old, but I couldn't post them due to computer problems. Plus I am on Fall Break this week, so I wouldn't have any school pictures anyway.

1. Here is the final picture of our pumpkin. The plants were doing fine, but the pumpkin had mold on it and it was getting very soft and stinky. I set it outside my door for a few days. Then one of the older kids decided to kick at it and put a hole in it. As I told my daughter, he probably got yucky stuff all over his shoe. 

 2. This is a little activity I have been doing ever since I started teaching first grade. All you need is some colored squares of paper (1" squares will work), gluesticks, a pencil,  and a piece of copy paper. I like to use 11 x 14 because some kids have a hard time using their space wisely.

 So what we do is take our spelling words and segment them as a group. Then we decide how many sounds were in the word and glue down that many squares. Then we say the segmented word and write the letter/letters for that sound (notice the word "are"...1 square the kids are always so surprised). The picture is my copy, I forgot to take a picture of one of the kid's papers. I always like to color code my paper, but the kids just use whatever color they want, some use only one color, some like to make patterns, some like to copy the teacher. After we have learned about Silent E and Magic E, a lot of times we will mark them on the squares. I also like to mark the breves and macrons. I'm not sure why I didn't mark the breves. Anyway it is a fun activity to give a visual to segmenting.

3. It was a beautiful morning and we were learning about nouns. We took an impromptu trip out to the blacktop. I took these pictures during recess, I didn't think to take my camera with me when we went outside. We sat around the four square court?. I wrote person, place, thing and animal in the squares and the students each took a turn coming up and giving a noun and then writing it in the correct square. The kids helped each other with the spelling of the words.

 Here are the squares close up.



4. I'll share some pictures of Delaney (surprise, surprise ;P) from this week. Sunday after church I took these four to Taco Bell for lunch. They were so nice, they say at the tall table and gave me a little seat in the corner by myself. haha

 Here is a picture of her on the first day at the new school. She spent quite a while picking out the right outfit. I guess it paid off, she said it was the best day of her life.

 Since her school is on a different schedule than mine, I have gotten to get a taste of being a stay at home mom. I have been taking her and two other girls to school. Since I'm not going in, I have just gotten dressed and maybe not even combed my hair (I did brush my teeth) and drove them to school. The last couple of days I have dropped them off about a block from school and watched them walk the rest of the way. They were excited to walk. today was crazy socks and shoes day for Red Ribbon Week (notice the pink shoe and the grey shoe). I have enjoyed my week as a stay at home mom, I wish it could go on longer.

5. I want to be a great teacher. In my quest to be the best I can be, I think I have cheated my daughter and myself. I have stayed up at school way too late, way too many times. I haven't always done this, I wouldn't have dreamed of doing it when I was married. I think it started getting bad when Delaney started school because she was with me and I didn't have to go pick her up. I've really been thinking about this a lot lately, especially since she has started her new school. I think this is going to be a  good thing for both of us because I am going to have to leave at 3:30 to go and pick her up. So that means we will have time to cook dinner at night, she will be able to play with the neighborhood kids after school and hopefully I will start going to bed earlier. I plan to start getting to school at least 30 minutes early to make up for not staying late. I think it is going to be a positive change for both of us.

Have a wonderful weekend!

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Wednesday, October 23, 2013

 Wednesday WOW! & My Truth about Fitness & FREEBIES

I'm joining Em from Curious Firsties for her weekly linky party Wednesday WOW!

Since I have been on Fall Break since October 14 and my computer was down for over a week, I'm going to share some journal writing from the week before my break started. I told the kids to write what they knew about frogs and I was pleased with their work. NOTE - I read their journals and write back to them, if they want. Most of the "want" which is time consuming, but I have found it has gotten the reluctant writers writing. It also gives you a lot of insight when you read the way they are spelling some of their words.

I love how he wrote slimy (slimee), notice that he marked his Magic E. We haven't gotten to long vowels yet,
 I just threw out a mini lesson one day because I knew some of them were more than ready for it.

This little boy has been one of my reluctant writers, I was so happy to see his journal in the stack.
I was even happier to see his sentences.

I am also joining Denise @ Sunny Days in Second Grade for her linky party My Truth Monday. I realize it isn't Monday, but it is all about fitness and I thought it would help me get up and get moving.

OK, so I am having problems getting the image above with "My Story"  on to the page, 
so here it is off of the page.

Basically, the truth is…I am not fit. I don’t really know how it happened, but I have let myself get into the worse shape of my life. I have gained weight over the years and haven’t tried to do anything about it until this year. I really have never liked exercising, especially if it is by myself. Since I have started trying to lose weight, I have been doing OK (most of the time) with what I eat and drink, but I still haven’t gotten the exercising into place. So I decided I needed to put it out there for others to read to hopefully get me up and moving.

Thanks to Em and Denise for their great linky parties!!!

Last but not least, I decided to jazz up my b and d letter reversals posters and labels. I make a lot of things black and white because I am the one who has to pay for all of my printer ink. I know some of you are more lucky and you have color printers at school so I thought I would give you some a little more jazzy. ;P
b and d letter reversal label

b and d letter reversals poster

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Tuesday, October 22, 2013

 I want to make my school a fun place.

Yes! My Computer Has Been Freed From the Evil Virus!!!! OK, so that may have been a little dramatic, but seriously, I was thrilled to get my computer back. I couldn't get on the internet at all and to make things even worse, I couldn't use any of my programs like Word or Powerpoint either. Here I was on Fall Break wanting to try to get caught up and maybe even ahead and I couldn't do anything. Fortunately for me, I have a super smart nephew who saved me $149 to get it fixed. Thanks so much Erick!!!

Yesterday, Delaney started her new school. She was thrilled beyond measure. She told me after school, it was the best day of her life. haha It has really made me feel like I made a mistake leaving her at my school. There were a lot of rough kids in her class. The new school is a totally different experience for her. She has always been in the minority at my school. The last few years she has been the only white child in the class. It didn't matter, but several of the girls she was friends with decided they were interested in boys and they have gotten pretty wild (in 5th grade!). 

As I have been going through this process of her changing schools, I have come to the realization that our school just isn't a fun school to attend. I don't know what happened. We just don't do any of the fun things that I read about on other blogs. I think it gotten worse last few years when we were going through all of the construction and renovations on our school. We are a small school and the district has started sending us 2 different music and art teachers. Each comes to our school one day. Since that has happened, there have been no honors choir, art club, etc... Delaney is a great student and since she has been old enough to do any of the special things, there hasn't been anything, no crossing guards, office aids, ...nothing.

Our school scores poorly on the CRTs so we have cut our recess down to 15 minutes to have more "time on task". Personally,  I think the whole thing has backfired. My daughter who is an excellent student and does score well on the CRTs hated school. She used to ask me all of the time if she could stay home. When you walk down the halls, you see a bunch of "data", no fun encouraging bulletin boards. It was one of the first things I noticed in Delaney's new school.

I don't know if I can be successful, but I'm going to call on the help of a few new teachers and see if I can't make our school more fun. Wish me luck!

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Wednesday, October 16, 2013

 Wednesday WOW!

I'm joining Em @ Curious Firsties for her weekly linking party Wednesday WOW. It's easy, share some big or little WOWs from the past week, whether it is personal or school related or both.

I still haven't gotten my computer fixed, so I have been having to use my school laptop. I'm not a good typist and I am even worse on this laptop. My nephew hasn't gotten to come over yet to try to get rid of the virus...hopefully he will make it soon. Oh, that is not my WOW. ;P

My daughter has always gone to school with me (since Pre-K). She has wanted to go the our neighborhood school for a couple of years. I finally agreed to let her. She will be in middle school next year and I thought it might be a good idea for her to already know some kids. I checked with the neighborhood school and the 5th grade classes have 32 in each class! I have a friend that teaches in another school very close to us, she said her principal doesn't usually take transfers, but she she might be persuaded by good behavior and good test scores. Fortunately for me, Delaney has both, so the principal has agreed to take. Their 5th grade classes are at 18 and 21 so that's better. Another bonus is my friend works there and has been so kind to offer to help me with transportation when I need help. I have to be at school at 8 and the new school doesn't start till 9. Anyway, Delaney has been practically walking on air since I told her yes. She is so excited because the new school is not a uniform school. We've done a little shopping to get her some new school clothes, so she has been modeling for me trying to figure out what she wants to wear the first day.

Monday was the first day of our 2 week fall break. I worked intersession Monday through
Wednesday, so tomorrow I can sleep late...WOW! :D

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Wednesday, October 9, 2013

 Wednesday WOW!

I'm joining Em @ Curious Firsties  for her weekly linky party Wednesday WOW! I hope she will forgive me for not posting her cute logo, but my computer is still down and my school computer takes forever to download anything.

Speaking of my computer, it has been off since Sunday night so the rogue virus can't do anymore damage. I'm really happy because my super smart nephew is pretty sure he can fix it and save me $149. That's a big WOW! : )

At school, I feel like I have made a break through with one of my behavior problems. She hasn't gotten a bad report in a week. Yes! I think slowly but surely, the kids are starting to settle down...hey we've only been in school for almost 10 weeks.  ;P

After totally going off my diet and I'm sure gaining a couple of pounds (why is it so much easier to gain weight than it is to lose weight????) I got back on track and I guess I was able to lose any that I gained plus 1 more pound.

Have a wonderful evening.

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Sunday, October 6, 2013

 I Found the Silver Lining

What a bummer, I was working on my computer Friday and all of the sudden this virus protection page offered a free scan. Why oh why did I say yes? I know better than that. I regretted it the minute I took my finger off of the enter key. Next thing I know my computer is being held for ransom by Antivirus Security Pro. I can't get on the internet, powerpoint, word, pinterest, facebook...nothing! : / I checked with Office Depot and Staples $149.00, $149.00!!! The guy at Office Depot said it would be a quick fix and I would be in and out. So my question is if it is so quick and easy why are you charging me $149.00?  Right now, I'm hoping my nephew who is a computer wiz can help me out. If he can't, let's just hope my tpt items start selling so I can afford to get it fixed!

Since I'm trying to be a more positive person, I have found the silver lining in not having my computer. My principal gave me permission to hand write what I would be doing this week. No Time Consuming Lesson  Plans!!! Honestly, I have had such a relaxing weekend without those crazy things hanging over my head.

In other news, I am taking my daughter out my school and putting her in our neighborhood school. She has wanted to leave my school for a while. There are just a lot of kids in her class that talk filthy, talk back to the teacher, etc... It hit me that I have left her in a situation that I wouldn't want to be in myself. She is only in 5th grade, but she says almost all of the kids cuss. Anyway, since I told her that I would take her to the other school, she has just been walking on air. Our school is a uniform school, so she that is another reason why she is so excited not to have to wear them any more.I hope she likes it as much as she thinks she will.

Guess I had better get off so I can jot down some lesson plans! ;P


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Wednesday, October 2, 2013

I'm joining Em @ Curious Firsties for her weekly linky party Wednesday WOW! It's so easy to do, all you have to do is share something positive that has happened at school or home in the last week. I really like this, it makes me realize each week that there are far more positive things going on in my classroom than I realize.

My first is sort of home and sort of school. I put my 4th product on TPT  that was not free and I actually sold one the first day. I know that may not sound like much, but I was really excited. My daughter and I did high fives and started planning a trip to Disney World. haha

My kids are going crazy with journal writing! My principal told me that when she taught she would write back to the kids in their journals. Well, I started doing that a couple of years ago, but this year...WOW, I had to write back to all 27 students today before I could leave school. I've never had every student turn their journal in for me to read. Last Friday, one of my sweet girls asked if I would read the journals and what I had written back on the Smartboard. I guess the kids saw that I really could read almost everything they had written. We had had a rather bad day and several of the kids had written telling me that they loved me and that I was nice and sometimes mean (lol). It was so funny, after I would read, they would all go "Awwww!" It's kind of cool, I have one little boy writing a "chapter" of the 3 Little Pigs each day.

One more thing that made me really happy yesterday. I had introduced Magic e a week ago. Our reading series doesn't introduce any long vowels until December. So one of our sight words this week is use, so I reminded them about Magic e again. We were brainstorming about pets and one of the words that came up was age. One of the kids raised her hand and said it has a Magic e. Yes!!!

Have a wonderful Wednesday. I'm on the countdown to a much needed fall break. 8 more school days and then I get 2 weeks off!

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