Good, Positive Thoughts

I am so proud of myself!  I finally wrote a book.  It’s for children 8-11 year olds.  It’s 11,500 words.  Fifty pages double-spaced.  And, I like it.  It’s Realistic Fiction for good readers and not so good readers.  It’s the story about a fifth grade boy and how he traverses fifth grade.

If you can give me any advice as to what my next step should be, I will be most grateful!!!!


rainy days and sunny days

It’s going to rain tomorrow. I’m not happy about that. I hate it when I get up in the morning and it’s raining cats and dogs. And it’s thundering and it’s lightning and i hear the sound of snoring coming from the bedroom. I just don’t want to go to school. Of course, I hate it when I get up in the morning and the sun is shining and the air is bursting with the smell of spring and i can think only about sitting on the beach, watching the seagulls and pelicans. And I don’t want to go to school. Only 67 more days until summer. But who’s counting?

Teacher Evaluation

Sure I’ve been away from being evaluated in several years. Sure I was in another state. It wasn’t totally overwhelming. In fact, I did exactly what I always did in my classroom, which was a cut above average back then. I wasn’t aware that as an associate teacher making half the salary of a first year teacher that I would have to go through the evaluation process which is totally appropriate for teachers during their first years of teaching, but definitely not appropriate for someone who was retired and came out of retirement.
My husband and I have complete differences of opinion about completing the evaluation process. He thinks I should complete it. The woman in charge of substitute teaching was thrilled that I will be subbing again next year and said that not completing my evaluation will have no consequences as far as subbing goes. And, yet, there is that 1/10000 of me that wants to complete what I started. And there’s that 99999/10000 of me that really doesn’t want to bother.
Tomorrow I meet with the assistant principal doing my evaluation. I guess our “chat” will determine what I do.

Knowing When

This is a difficult time for me. I have come to the realization that I’ve run out of steam. I’ve run out of time. There was a time when I had the energy and the stamina to do what an excellent teacher should do. All the other stuff besides actually delivering an excellent lesson. This is my last teaching experience in the sense of formal teaching. I’ll sub again and I’ll hang my shingle out to tutor. I’ll teach religious school. My days will be filled without schedules and being accountable. And then I’ll have the time to enjoy just living.

From the mouth of 5th graders

When I got to school yesterday morning, I was informed that we were going to flip-flop period 3 with period 1, which meant we would have math first. One of my kids complained about the switch. Another kid said,”Well, at least we get it out of the way.”
Needless to say, for me that was a confirmation that I must be doing something right and the math teacher is doing something wrong.

Awesome Parenting

As I was walking around my classroom, I noticed Savannah’s pencil box sitting on her desk. It had an index card well-taped to the top. On the card was written “Savannah–As your parents we know that you can do anything you put your mind to. Keep shooting for the stars! Love, Mommy & Daddy.” I thought how wonderful that little card is! Just a few words that said so much! How brilliant! And, believe me, Savannah is just such a lovely, persevering, positive young lady! She’s a great learner, responsible, organized, and very bright! In addition, she runs like the wind! WOW!

Poems for Two Voices

Thursday is pause day. That means we stop and two of the three teachers with whom I teach and I take a group of children and work with them. As the only teacher without a classroom, I take my group to the library. Initially, I thought I would reinforce identifying themes in Aesop’s Fables. I had downloaded 9 of the stories and planned to distribute them to students. I wanted each student to read their story to the group of students at their table and have the other children identify the theme. Mid-morning I thought I should give a list of themes to each student to help them in their task. Unfortunately, I had a grade level meeting during planning time. Another obstacle was not having a computer. I went into the computer lab, typed the list, and then I couldn’t get it printed. I realized that I didn’t need a blinking neon light to convince me that I needed to scrap the lesson and do something else. I had become familiar with some of Kagan’s structures. “Ah ha!” I thought, “Poems for Two Voices!” It took me three minutes to write topics on 3×5 cards and locate some paper.
I gave the kids clear, definite directions and released them. They had a great time and wrote some wonderful poems! I was beaming like a proud momma. Some of the poems rhymed. Some did not. A definite Rocky moment!