Monday, December 15, 2014

A Christmas Conversation



The week before Christmas...  It came very quickly for me.

I hope this week will be fun, memorable
and pleasant for you and your students.  

Monday, December 1, 2014

Happy December

Happy December!!
(O.M.Goodness, I could hardly believe it!)
I'm linking up with Ms. Farley over at 
Oh Boy, Fourth Grade
for December's Currently.
( I love these.)

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Unexpected "Wows"



This week went by faster than a speeding freight train.
A lot has happened in a short period of time.
There was plenty to worry about, and much to cry about.
However, in the midst of the storms, a few precious "wow" moments sneaked up on me.  

Sunday, November 2, 2014

This Week's Wows


Celebrating small moments that make a huge difference.  

November's Currently

I always look forward Miss Farley's November Currently Linky Party over at . . .

This month's Currently is sponsored by Kelly at . . .
An Apple for the Teacher

Here's my November Currently.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

This Week's Wows


Here's to the last two weeks!

In the #4 slot . . .

I had a lovely time with a few of my colleagues hanging out at our school's Barnes & Noble Night.  (I should have taken a pic . . .)  I also bought two books.  One was recommended by one of the blogs I clicked on when I participated in the October Currently, As the Classroom Turns.  I also saw it again on a Pinterest pin by Miss Radka's Rhapsody. After reading about "Wonder" by R.J.Palacio in both blogs, I decided to buy the 365 Days of Wonder by R.J.Palacio.  I plan to use some of his precepts as journal reflections.  I also bought Shel Silverstein's "Falling Up".  


I also plan to use some of his poetry as journal reflections this year, as well.  Our first enjoyment was the little poem, "Safe?".  We discussed the vocabulary, the play on words, multiple and deeper meanings.  Even a poem as simple as "Safe?" can be "rigorous" for an ELL.  I've got my work cut out for me this year.  

In the 3rd slot . . .

This past Monday was a Teacher Work Day.
I wish I had a T.W.D. every week.  

In the 2nd slot . . .

My students took their second reading inventory. I had several students raise their lexiles by over 100 points in just nine weeks! Woah! I think it may be due to the Reading Plus program.  The students who have been using it regularly, more than I require, were the ones who noticed more gains.  

And, my #1 "Wow" . . .

My #1 wow for this week was really from last weekend. I spent a lovely time at a Women's Retreat with my mom and sister. The weather was great, so was the company, and the camp was peaceful and pleasant.
Just what the doctor ordered. . .




As the days fly by, literally, I am compelled to look for beauty and blessings, even in the midst of craziness.  If there's one thing I am sure of, now more than ever, is that life goes by way too quickly.  May we find something to celebrate each and every day and take advantage of the opportunities to enjoy the journey.  

I pray you all have a lovely, safe, and memorable weekend.

God Bless, 

Friday, October 10, 2014

This Week's Wows



Each week comes with its own challenges and hardships. We never really know what the next week will bring. If we're not looking, the difficulties can shadow our "wow" moments. Well, not this week!

Here are my "wow" moments for this week :)


I almost jumped out of my skin during 5th hour today.
During a game of Jeopardy, one of mybeginning ELL's was able to steal a point away from the other team by answering this question correctly:

"Which Word Attack word means an agreement made by a group of people?" No one remembered, she did!!!!!  The answer, "consensus". 


My sister is recovering from her partial knee replacement surgery more quickly than the doctor had anticipated.  
We couldn't be happier.  



I watched the marathan episodes of Jen Hatmaker's house renovation.  All I could say after each episode was "WOW!"  If you're into decorating and remodeling, 
this is a must see!


Click on her picture to visit her blog and links to the show's information and air times.


And, my #1 WOW moment for this week is being able to get home early after weeks of getting home after 6pm.  


Wishing everyone a fabulous weekend!
Happy Fall Break to many to all of you who will be on fall break this coming week.
No fall break on my end, but still very grateful.

Friday, October 3, 2014

It's "Currently" October

Hi Everyone!
I'm linking up once again with
Farley, at Oh' Boy 4th Grade
for October's Currently.


To see a variety of fun Currentlys, 
take a moment and click on her site.  

October's Currently is sponsored by 

A Grace-Filled Classroom

Here's Mine . . .

Trick for High Maintenance Middle Schoolers:

In my experience compliments yield more favorable results than any other feedback.  And, negative feedback sandwiched in compliments is received more readily.  
  
When my students walk in at the beginning of the period, I stand at the door with stickers, yes stickers.  Middle schoolers still love them.  (I collect stickers all year long and I have a good variety.) Without saying much, I just intentionally, and sometimes dramatically, search for students who follow our walk-in routine quickly, quietly, maturely and correctly. 

As soon as I see the first one, I walk to his or her desk, express my gratitude and a specific compliment.  I then put a sticker on the back of their hand.  In less than a few minutes I have the entire class on task, and almost always, everyone starts the period with a compliment.  When an unexpected incident threatens to disrupt the routine, I quickly begin to appreciate and specifically thank students who are cooperating and complying, 
and things get back in order.  

By the end of the year student notebooks, journals and agendas are covered with their rewards.  Some days, I omit the sticker, and I just say, "_________ gets a compliment for _________." And, it works just as well.  Validation, recognition and appreciation goes a long way.

Wishing You All the Best October Ever!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Add and Delete

The Art of Editing

I teach my middle schoolers to edit their writing by using these three steps:  
~ Read what you have written.
~ Delete what doesn't work or doesn't sound right.
~ Add something better.


As I reflect on the last 6 weeks of school, I realize I need to do a little editing myself. 

I've noticed that it's not only new district and state mandates that make my cup overflow, but I have my own mandates that seem to have similar effects.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Wordless Wednesday with Miss De Carbo @ Sugar and Spice

Happy Wednesday, Everyone

Today I'm happy to be linking up with Miss DeCarbo @ Sugar and Spice for


. . . Missing my chug-a-lugs . . .




If you have a moment, check out his website 


Monday, September 1, 2014

Currently for September

Happy Labor Day!

It's so nice to have a day off so soon after school started!  We've only been in school for two weeks, but it sure has been lots of work.  We're gearing up for our Open House next week.  My room has been a work in progress this year.  I "brilliantly" waited to buy classroom supplies for August.  I just thought I'd go to my local teacher store and pick things up there instead of ordering them through our bookkeeper.  Big mistake.  Unbeknowst to me, the two stores in our county that sold school supplies closed down!

Yikes!
Up the creek~

Monday, August 25, 2014

First Week of School Reflection


School is in full swing.

The countries represented in my classroom this year are:

Argentina
Bangladesh
Brazil
China
Colombia
Cuba
Guatemala
Haiti
Iran
Nicaragua
Panama
Puerto Rico
Romania
Ukraine
Spain
Switzerland
Venezuela

Awesome!  They are a lovely group of kids, 
anxious to learn English.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Memories

Every summer I have "organize my photo albums" on my Summer Do List.  And, every summer I take out the albums, become overwhelmed, and leave it for next week.  Well, next week has turned into "next summer".  I hope I next summer will be the summer I finally finish this task.

I did find some memorable pictures while looking through the albums.  These are pics of my old classroom at the elementary school where I taught during the 90's.  We had several ESOL teachers, for a few years I was assigned Kindergarten.  I have fond memories of those days.  The kids were great and I worked with amazing colleagues that are still my friends today.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Meet The Teacher Blogger

Hi Everyone!

So happy your stopped by.  
I just had to join this linky party (even though I'm a few days late).

It's being hosted by Stephanie at 

Photobucket



Singing, Reading, Relaxing, Laughing, Writing, 
Walking by the Water

Monday, August 4, 2014

SMILE

Good Morning, Friends

August is here.  Can you believe it?

This Friday is our first leadership meeting, and next week the 
2015 School Year is officially in session.  

I want to thank everyone who visited my blog this summer.  
I cannot thank the link up sites enough.  They availed my blog the opportunity to have been visited by many readers that I most likely would have never been able to reach all by myself.  

(Standing Ovation ~ Applause!)



Today I'm linking up once more with 4th Grade Frolics for 
Monday Made It.

Today's DIY is a small trinket I made for my own sake, to keep on my desk. Hopefully, this little plaque will remind me of what I mostly want to do this year.  Smile.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

CURRENTLY

Hi Everyone!
Happy Saturday

This morning I opened my computer and saw that some of my favorite blogs had joined the CURRENTLY linky party over at

I want to thank The Teacher's Desk.  I follow her blog and she is very good about letting us know what's happening in the teaching blog world.  
The Teacher's Desk 6

The CURRENTLY link up party this month is being sponsored by
If You Mustache, I {heart} Teaching

All three of these blogs are amazing.  Stop by if you get a chance.  Just click on their button.



My August CURRENTLY


Enjoy your weekend!