Sunday, August 31, 2008
Saturday, August 30, 2008
On Thursday, I was in a meeting with a group of teachers. I was a learner not a presenter. The material was crucial for me as well as the other teachers. I took notes and listened intently. Well, at least I tried to listen intently.
In the last session---three hours---two people sitting at a table near me, made it almost impossible to listen. They engaged in a conversation of their own. The speaker would walk near them and look right at them as she talked...nothing.
My question was: how could what they were talking about be more important than this speaker with specific knowledge? Would they allow their students to behave this way? I hope not.
When the presentation was over and I was helping the speaker clean up, I apologized for these rude individuals. I assured her not all of the teachers in our district are inconsiderate.
I did learn much that day, from these presenters, about our new reading series. I also learned something about being a presenter. From now on I'll begin my sessions by giving some norms:
- If you need to use the restroom---go!
- If you need to have a conversation...go outside and do it, then come back in when you are done.
There, I feel better now!
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Sunday, August 24, 2008
I first went to Haley and led a before school in-service. It was fast but great to see all my friends there and even meet some new teachers. I unpacked my books and got them back on the bookshelves and ready to go.
I spent a whole day at Weisser Park on Thursday in the fourth and fifth grade classrooms. They were doing lessons all week getting a community of learners set up. They asked me to come in and do a Read Aloud/Think Aloud. They all said I was part of their community and they wanted their kiddos to know me, too. I read either: Have You Filled a Bucket Today? or WOLF! It was so much fun being part of those classrooms. They are great kids and fun to share with, too. We ended each session with Quick Writes about what we read. The kiddos were amazing writers already!
On Friday I ran over to Fairfield to deliver packets of ISTEP prep work. I got to peek in on several classes. I met one new teacher and went into a friend's class. She changed from first to fifth grade. She is doing a great job with them. I think it was a wonderful move for her and those kids are so lucky to have her!
So, our year is up and running. I will spend more time in classrooms this week getting to know new teachers, catching up with ones I already knew and sharing with those precious cherubs we get to spend our time with each day!
Sunday, August 17, 2008
First of all, I want to say that I am so proud to be part of the school district where I work. Last week we had a fantastic week of learning. They provided top notch training for all teachers in many, many areas. Then there was the message on Thursday. Dr. Robinson is so upbeat and positive. Her message inspired everyone.
Now for Jen's message. Her letter to all those people who have no idea what teachers do, what teachers feel for their kiddos, and for all those people who trash talk the schools, hits the mark in my opinion. I am not going to try to resay what she already did with passion. Check out Jen's blog. My blog today is just instructions to read her post. Again, I say: Right on, sista'!!!! I am so proud of you and all those teachers just like you that I am so blessed to be able to work along side!
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
This week we had a week long professional development. On Monday, Barb and I did an all-day session on Writing Through the Year for 4th and 5th grade teachers. We shared how to set up a community in your classroom, the new writing curriculum, how to use writer's notebooks and several mini lessons to get them started. We had close to 60 teachers take time out of their last days to join us.
Then on Wednesday we did the same thing with the second and third grade teachers. We had so much fun with them today. They were a wild bunch, but so full of great ideas they were willing to share with each other.
On Tuesday we took a class on how to teach ELL students. Our trainer was Jo Gusman from California. She had us up and moving most of the day. We gained so much knowledge but had so much fun doing it.
Tomorrow the entire school district teachers meet at the coliseum for a full day of training. It sounds like it is going to be great. Can't imagine that many teachers all in one place. We hope to kick off the year with a BOLD new beginning!
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Then it was time to blow out the candles! I don't know what he wished for, but since he put the candles on himself, I imagine it was easy to blow them out!
Happy Birthday, Kiann!
Saturday, August 9, 2008
Friday, August 8, 2008
Another book that was shared is Tucket's Travels. This book again is for 5-8 grades. There is a whole series of Tucket books. As you can tell from the cover, it is a western!
The last book that I will share is Lawn Boy. This looks like such a fun book. It is for 4th - 7th graders. It is all about free market economy and a rags to riches story. When the hero's grandmother gives him a riding lawn mower for his 12th birthday, the adventure begins.Our next book is by Sherman Alexie. It is called: The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian. This is the author's first novel for young adults. It chronicles the contemporary adolescence of one unlucky boy trying to rise above the life everyone expects him to live. Why not read along with us!