It’s Saturday

Discover. Play. Build.

Ruth Ayres invites us to share our celebrations from the week each Saturday.  Thank you, Ruth, for reminding me to celebrate. Share your celebrations at Ruth Ayres Writes.

There’s so much to celebrate:

I love my job.  I keep pinching myself to make sure it’s not all a dream.  I never realized I was teaching above my 5th graders’ heads before, so it’s been a comfortable/easy transition to 7th grade (I can reuse most of what I’ve done before).

My kids make me laugh.  I made an amateur middle school mistake (they keep you on your toes) of labeling a paper with #2 when the first word was “Crap.”  I kept saying, “Look at paper number two, the one that starts with the word crap.”

My kids giggled and pointed out, “Isn’t it funny how you labeled the story with the word crap as #2.”  They were rolling making this toilet connection to my student examples for revision.  I couldn’t help but join them.

Yesterday I caught myself making that “What are you doing/supposed to be doing face?”  This is the face that makes me scrunch my entire face, especially my forehead as I give a little darling the stink eye to remind them to get back on track.  My coworker and I joke that this face is why we have fine lines between our eyes.  As I caught myself making this face, I couldn’t help but  laugh.  I jokingly told the student he was the reason I may need Botox someday.  He thought this was hysterical, and he walked out of the classroom smiling as he repeated, “I’m the reason Ms. F. needs Botox.”

I perused through old files to try to reuse something from last year, and I felt a pit in my stomach just thinking of how challenging last year was.  Even looking at old lessons from then made me start to feel sick.  I realized just how tough last year was, and I was even more grateful for my new situation.  I feel so blessed.  It’s like I hit the school lottery.

My parents are wonderful.

My mom bought me an Ipad “just because.”  There was a promotion when she upgraded her phone, so she thought of me when they offered it.  (Now I just need to learn how to use it and get a case so I’m not worried about dropping it.)

I called my dad to tell him my coworker asked if I’d help coach the girls’ basketball team. He now calls me “Coach” and has promised to attend all of my games.  It’s so sweet.

I must admit I’m as excited as my dad to help with the team.  Basketball is my favorite sport, so I love that I’ll get to help out.

I go to bed each night with a long list of things I’m grateful for.  I smiled last week when I couldn’t think of just one thing that was the best part of my day.

It’s Been A While

Discover. Play. Build.

Ruth Ayres invites us to share our celebrations from the week each Saturday.  Thank you, Ruth, for reminding me to celebrate. Share your celebrations at Ruth Ayres Writes.

I have so much to celebrate.  My recent trip has changed my view of the world, is making me crave more world travel, and has given me so many stories to someday share.  I love my new job.  (I can’t believe I ever taught elementary school.  My friends who said I should be a middle school teacher, when I was teaching in an elementary school, were right.)  

1. My new job is exactly what I dreamed of.  It reminds me to ask more for what I want and put it out there.  (Everything I want exists.)

2. Teachers are such a kind group.  I’m not afraid to ask questions (sometimes I might feel stupid that I don’t know the answer), but I’ve found a wonderful network of people who take the time to answer.  Thank you specifically to Christy for answering my calls, emails, and sharing your brain.  I’m already a better teacher because of our conversations. 

3. I’ve gotten to spend some unexpected time with my family this week.  My sister is playing softball for her high school, and all of her home games are a few minutes from my new school.  I’ve been wanting to spend more time with family and friends and to have a more healthy balance during the school year, and this has enabled me to do so.  Last night she got called up to play on varsity and had an awesome play at third base.  She’s become so focused on what she wants with this team and even her career.  She always asks my dad to practice with her and keeps asking me for phone numbers of people I know that are veterinarians (the job she wants).  I love that she is starting to take ownership of her life and what she wants. She reminds me of the value of putting in extra effort, and I’m in awe watching the amazing person she’s becoming. 

4. I’m slightly on top of things.  Although I’m unsure of units and specific details, I feel somewhat organized.  People have even come into my classroom and told me how neat it is!  This is so not the normal me.  (My mom would be so proud.)  I’m finally taking the time at school and at home to spend an extra moment putting things away.  It’s making a huge difference, and I really want to keep it up. Even if my list is a million things long, it helps me to feel less overwhelmed. 

5. My kids aren’t readers, well most of them aren’t, but they are starting to bite.  I do book talks every Tuesday and Thursday, and I raffle off the books I talk about to the interested parties.  They are getting excited and slowly, I hope, developing into a group of kids who might read.  I know they’re starting to see the value at least.  I displayed the startling “Why Can’t I Skip My 20 Minutes of Reading Tonight?” poster, and that seemed to at least get them to see that reading can, and does, make a difference.  I also used suggestions from Donalyn’s session this summer on how to conference.  It was so fun to begin that yesterday.  I love how honest my students are.  I used Donalyn’s question suggestions from her conference format, and I had small laughs with many who were afraid to tell me that they preferred video games over books.  I know I’m up against some tough competition with all the social media and tech gadgets, but I’m ready for it.