Friday, January 9, 2015

Five for Friday...First Week Back from Winter Break!

      I am linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching for another Five for Friday!  The best part of this week for me was that I only had to work 2 1/2 days!  Not that I don't love my kiddos, but easing back into work after a two week vacation, was exactly what I needed. :)

1. This past weekend we went skiing!  The ski slopes are really just hills, but it is still fun and we went when there was snow, but before the frigid air came! It was perfect timing!

2. Speaking of snow, we had a SNOW DAY on Tuesday!  It was great! I was able to get some school work finished, work on a TpT product, finally go see The Hunger Games- Mockingjay, and go for a walk in my new snow boots! :)

3. Cold, cold, cold! This is what my weather app said on Thursday, hence another day off school.  Yep, as of Thursday I had only worked Monday and Wednesday!  

4. I am currently participating in a book study in which we are reading and implementing Notice and Note.  I love this book.  It really has helped me to teach my students to read more closely and to pay attention to key details within the text.  If you have not read this book, I would suggest doing so! 

I finished a new product that can support Notice and Note, over winter break.  This week, I have been busy teaching about the sign posts that I had not yet taught.  This week in my reading groups, I was focusing on Words of the Wiser.  This is when usually an older and wiser character, pulls the main character aside to give him/her advice.  The kids are realizing that the advice given is essential to understanding the life lesson and therefore the theme of the text. 

The product below has black and white copies as well as color copies.  My school has a poster maker, so I printed the black and white copies. Then I colored them to make them pop out a bit more.  You can see my posters below. You can check this product out, by clicking on the picture below:

5. On my snow day I finished up my most recent Cam Jansen Novel Study!  I love Cam Jansen mysteries and so do my kiddos!  Click on the picture below to check it out!

Happy Friday!  I hope you enjoy your weekend!

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Sad News

      As the new year begins and the second half of my tenth year of teaching is just days away, I have some sad news to share.  I usually do not post sad or even personal information on my blog, but felt moved to share this story.  After teaching 9 1/2 years, I have taught somewhere around 250 students.  Each one has come into my classroom and while I have tried to teach each child, they all have things that they have taught me as a person and as a teacher.  
     I feel that as teachers, we know that some students leave a larger imprint on our lives, more so than others.  They are the students that even after 9 years you know their first and last name, you can quote them verbatim, remember their mannerisms, see the faces they would make, and hear their voice.  
     Just before Christmas I heard that one of my former students was in the hospital.  He had been sick at the beginning of December before an unexpected downward spiral.  This past Tuesday, Ryan passed away. 
      Ryan, was an amazing little boy.  I had him for first grade during the 2007-2008 school year.  It was my third year teaching.  He was bright, funny, sweet, and loving.  He LOVED cars and trains.  With a train track near our school, he could hear the train whistle even when no one else could.  I can still hear him singing "We Are the Champions" all the way to our field trip that year.  I can remember the hugs that he gave me in the hall after he moved on to second grade.  I remember his sad voice when he got upset about things that frustrated him.  
       As much as I loved Ryan, working with him wasn't always easy.  But, I realize that so many students who challenge us are the most memorable students.  Those were the ones placed in my classroom for a greater purpose than simply to learn academics.  Those are the kiddos that teach me and his/her classmates about all aspects of life.  Ryan taught me a LOT that year.  I know for sure that he taught me to be a better teacher.   

     I urge you, as you head back to school after hopefully a restful winter break, to look closely at each child in your classroom.  Even on the hard days, remember that each one is in YOUR room for a special reason.  Cherish each little kiddo that steps foot in your room and know that they may just be there for a special purpose. 
    While I can't be in North Carolina today my thoughts are with Ryan's family and the community in which I used to teach. 

Thursday, January 1, 2015

January Currently- Happy New Year!

Can you believe another year has ended?  It is hard for me to feel like it is a new year because my internal calendar begins in August and ends in June.  Hmmm...I wonder why?!!  It is not only the new year, but a new month and that means it is time for the January Currently.  I am linking up with Farley at Oh' Boy 4th Grade

Listening: After taking down most of the Christmas decorations (except the tree of course), we cleaned this morning.  Trying to get some things taken care of before going back to school on Monday.  
Loving: Winter Break!!! Need I say more?! Two full weeks off is amazing and I don't want it to end!
Thinking: I have been thinking about starting my next TpT product over break, but I sort of took a break from everything, so it hasn't happened yet.  Thinking about starting it up today or tomorrow.
Wanting: My Christmas tree to stay up forever.  I don't know about you, but I love sitting on the couch at night, watching tv, and having the tree all lit up!  It is so pretty and peaceful!
Needing: Our report cards are done digitally and they are due online by JAnuary 12th.  They take FOREEEEVER to complete. I would really like to get them finished up tomorrow so that I don't have to worry about them when we go back and start up the third quarter on Monday.
Yes: I will stay active outside this winter.  So often, in the winter I simply go to the gym, but walking/running outside is something I want to do more so this winter, than last.
Maybe: I would like to run a 10k this year.  I have ran many 5k's and one half-marathon.  There probably won't ever be another half for me, but I would like to try and train for a 10k. 
I wish: I just wish that everyone has a happy and healthy year! 

Enjoy the last few days of your winter break! Happy New Year!

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