Resolutions...or things I want to get done this next year

Wow! I can't believe that 2011 is almost gone.  It was quite a year, really, but I am not terribly sad to see it go.  There were a lot of good things that happened this year, so I can't complain really.  Hubby passed the bar, my daughter started Kindergarten and I finished all my classes forever.  Or until I decide to learn something new!  ;)

Come January, I am always excited for the new year.  I always set lofty expectations for myself that I rarely accomplish.  And then the following December (like now) I tell myself that this is the year I will do it.  I am trying to set some loftier goals, but let's face it...that's not me!  I always say I will lose weight.  Thanks to Weight Watchers, I am on that freaking long ass journey.  Who knew it would take me forever?  I always say I will be more organized.  What I should say is I will buy less crap and not have it in my house or classroom.  Ha!  If I don't buy it, I am printing it off from other fabulous bloggers and adding to my collection of files that I may or may not use in the future!  But, at least I am trying!  :)

This year, I have thought of a couple goals more school related.  I feel like in the last couple years I have slacked off as a teacher.  It's not from laziness, but from the fact that things have been so scripted and we have been told what to teach when, so a lot of the fun has been lost.  I am slowly trying to bring back some things I used to do that my students have liked, plus trying new things.  Sometimes I feel like I really suck at getting my kids excited about learning, but I am also comparing it to the classes that have more fun than learning, yet the kids "magically" are at grade level (but not really!).  I have come to understand that I have a job to do (teach my kids), but that I need to bring some of the joy back to learning.  I think I can do that with a little hard work and thinking a bit outside the box.  Thanks to wonderful bloggers who share their creative abilities with us, I am able to provide my kids with some "fun" while they are still learning. 

Another goal I have is to be more creative.  After taking 3 art classes this summer, I feel I am a little better prepared to teach my kids art.  It's been hard finding the time to fit it in, but we are slowly getting it done.  I am planning to doing some more formal art lessons when we return and get them thinking more artsy...or as artsy as we can be!  I know there are times when I am too rigid and by the book and making sure I follow my plans to a T, but I am going to try to go with the flow a bit more and see what happens.  My husband would die laughing at this thought, but hey, it's the thought at this point that may make something happen! 

Along those lines, I am going to try to be more creative and make more things I use in my class.  I have tons of teacher resource books, but some of them aren't the greatest or they are boring.  I'd rather make what my kids need.  I love everything that Kristin has and I am loving everything that Heather has, too.  I feel I am becoming a bit more creative by using their things.  I don't have the creativeness in me like they do, nor do I have (or make) the time to sit at the computer.  I don't buy clip art to use, nor do I want to.  I am trying to get more, but I buy a couple, use them and then see all the cuter things everyone else has.  But, I am going to try to see what I can do this year and make for me and my kids. 

Sitting here tonight with another week of vacation ahead of me (go ahead, make nasty faces at me!!!!), I am thinking about all the things I want to do in my classroom that I can't get into yet.  I never have liked the set up, so I think I may stay late one day and move it all around.  Yep, craziness talking, but move things to make it better.  Or at least get my desk away from the door.  I hate it there and don't use it.  I need it to be more teacher friendly and kid friendly.  It may take me a month to get it done (our school will probably be closed all week, lucky us), but I want it to be done by February so I can feel more at ease with my room.  I also need to organize things better.  Since I had to move in in a hurry, things are shoved here and there and there isn't a lot of rhyme or reason as to where things are.  That project may take me the rest of the year, but I can manage. 

Well, my pizza is ready.  Time to make a salad, sit down to eat dinner and start watching one of the 4 movies we got this weekend!  Happy almost New Year to you all! 

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