8.16.2015

It came and it went

Wow!  I have officially survived my 18th first day of school.  It's hard to believe that this is my 18th year teaching.  It doesn't seem possible, but when I realize my first class of kids now have kids of their own, it makes me feel old...and I'm only 39!  Yikes!  Where does the time go?


I have ZERO pictures of the first 3 days.  I never took my camera out.  I wanted to, but there wasn't time or I didn't think of it.  I had the best intentions at 4:30am, but then before I knew it, it was 1:45 and the kids were gone!  Maybe this week...maybe. 


I have 19 kiddos on my roster.  18 have shown up so far, and I got an email last night from the other one that they will be here tomorrow.  I guess it's a family court issue, so that will make things interesting.  Makes me sad to know that a little one is dealing with big family issues.  I don't get it, but my parents have been married forever (44 years next month) and my hubby's parents were married forever and all our grandparents were married forever.  Heck, we've been married for almost 13 years!  I just feel bad that the little guys have to worry about their parents' lives and can't enjoy being 6 anymore. 


Anyway, the first day of school felt funky.  I don't really know why, but it did.  It felt all out of whack and I felt like we didn't get anything accomplished.  We went over the rules (again and again and again), did a little tour (even though it was 247 degrees outside) and did a little project.  That's it!  Thursday felt a little better as we tried to follow some semblance of a routine, but even that will be changing soon.  Friday is our PE day, so that took a chunk out of the day and it was another funky day since it was hotter than hades for the kids to be outside.  You know it's too hot when it's 110 at pick up time and it's only 1:45.  Yeah, I don't know how teachers in Arizona do it! 


So far my kiddos seem sweet and eager to learn.  I have a couple of squirrely kids who don't know the rules apply to them yet, but I will get them under control!  I have one on "meds", but I don't know how well they help.  Cute as can be, but ZERO impulse control.  He'll come over in the middle of a lesson and do push ups on the floor, just because.  And he brings a whole new meaning to LOUD, too!  He's super smart, but has no social skills, so that will be our goal this year. 


We are all at about 18-19 kids.  Rumor is our super doesn't want anyone about 24 kids in K-3, so we will see.  I'd like to stay at 19, but I have a feeling we will be moving kids, closing classes and moving teachers to other sites.  :(  It's not good for anyone, and it throws the whole class out of whack when they make the changes.  Our principal has a meeting on Tuesday, so we might know more then, but I doubt it.  They normally wait a month before throwing a monkey wrench into our classes. 


This coming week I need to get my testing done so I know where my kids are.  I know the really high ones and the really low ones already, but I need to figure out the in betweens.  Luckily I think most are pretty solid in their kinder skills and are ready for first grade!  That's half the battle right there! 


Here's to a great second week of school.  It won't be as hot as it has been, so that's good.  It is going to be about 115 today, so I am staying put in my house with the AC on, enjoying the morning still in my pj's.  There are worse ways to spend the day! 


8.02.2015

'Twas a week before school started...

...and I might be stressing out a little bit!  I realized there is a box in the garage that I brought home and I don' know what's in it.  I was going to get it tonight and look through it, but I didn't.  I can wait one more day!  I have little piles here and there that are slowly being whittled down, taken to school and put away.  My room is almost done, and as long as I don't mess it up tomorrow, I think it will be about done!  I will put my calendar back up, put a couple more things on the wall, put the junk away from my table and then I can get planning, copying and organizing my weeks.  I say weeks because it's my goal to be about 3-4 weeks planned and prepped at a time.  I can always move things around as needed, but this way, I am more prepared and hopefully not staying late on Friday afternoons. 


I am trying something new this year (lots of new things, really) - math binders.  Our math person in the district is really into Common Core.  He believes that we teach students the answers too much and not how to find the answers.  I can sort of agree with that, but then other times I disagree.  Anyway, they have created/found some masters that are number lines, 120 charts, ten frames, etc that we have copied and will put into sheet protectors and then into binders for the kids.  The idea is that the students will use whatever they want in order to solve the problem.  I can see that being very beneficial, but I will spend quite a bit of time teaching and having the kids working with each sheet so they know how to use them, why we use them and what manipulatives are the best.  I won't jump into my curriculum for a couple weeks, so we will "play" during math time!  I am hoping I can get away from the idea that I must do a formal lesson each day, when I can see the same results with having the kids experiment with their learning.  Wish me luck...I'm a control freak!  Anyway, I still need to put my binders together!  All summer and they are still stacked in the boxes and the copies are elsewhere...maybe in the garage!  Yikes!


I am hoping this week to go into school 3 days - Monday, Wednesday and Thursday.  Tuesday I have an appointment and it's when I would go to school.  My daughter is in an art camp this week and it ends at 1:00, so I need to pick her up.  By then, no one wants to go work at school!  So tomorrow she and I will go and get a lot done and then on Wednesday and Thursday I will be there for about 3 hours both days.  Friday I mm NOT going in.  Instead I will go get a pedicure with my daughter, do a little bit of shopping and maybe grab some lunch before her 4H meeting.  It'll be our last day of vacation together.  :(  Man it goes by so fast!  She will start school on Monday and I have kids on Wednesday (Monday and Tuesday are get your rooms ready days!).  It'll be here before we know it.  Then it's back to the routines and the craziness of the new year - after school functions, appointments, meetings and life!  Busy, busy! 


Here's to one more Sunday night before the crazy chaos begins!