Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Happy Holidays!

May the meaning of the season be deeper, its friendships stronger and its hopes brighter. Wishing you and your family a safe, happy holiday and a prosperous New Year.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Just Getting By

It's funny how my last post was about being re-energized after my time away from work. I have been back to work a little over a month and do not feel energized. Was it all the meetings/trainings that we had at the beginning of the school year? Was it coming back to the States having only a few days off before going back to work? Was it hosting a conference at our school in the first month and all that needed to be done to make it a success? Was it agreeing to teach 3 new classes?

I think that all these factors play into the feeling of "I'm just getting by." I am not that person who likes to just get by. I am a planner...I like to plan at least a week in advance, I like to have a rough idea for the trimester of where I am going with my students, and I make to do lists CONSTANTLY!

I always say that I would never want to be an administrator, but the longer I stay in education, the more I long for administrators who remembered what it was like in their instructional days and empathize with those who are in the trenches.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Time To Reflect

One thing that I love so much about teaching is that we have the summers off to reflect and renew our spirits. I love taking this time to travel…it takes me out of the “bubble” of Northern Virginia to really see what life is like in other cultures. To be disconnected from the everyday pleasures that I am so used to really makes me a better person, teacher, wife, and friend. This summer I am spending 9 weeks in Thailand doing service work and teaching 3-6 grade English through Rustic Pathways. I am living in a little village outside Udon Thani. It is very rural with very little “Western” influences, yet the people here are so warm and friendly, they really make you feel like family. I will definitely cherish this journey and be renewed when it is time to go back to work at the end of August.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

The Final Push

With nine days to go until the end of the school year, I am officially on autopilot. After 13 years of teaching I have realized that I have a love hate relationship with this time of year.

I hate that I get snappy with my husband because of the stress I feel to get everything done. I hate that I don't have enough time to teach my students everything that I had hoped to teach them. I hate that I live on caffeine to make it to the end. I hate that I am emotionally, physically, mentally drained.

On the other hand...

I love seeing the growth my students have made through out the year. I love when students say that they will miss me. I love to start thinking of new projects/possiblities for the next school year. I love taking down everything in my room so I can start fresh in August. I love passing out yearbooks and seeing the kids get excited about seeing themselves in the book. I love the idea of having a new SCA board and all the ideas they bring to make change. I love cleaning and organizing to get ready for the next school year. I love seeing the 8th graders at graduation. I love reflecting on what went right this year and what went totally wrong. I love the idea that I can change what went wrong. I love the idea that summer break is near and my travel adventures will begin.

So...I continue to push on because I love what I do and this makes my soul happy!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Chalkboard Animation

This video from Lucinda Schreiber is just way too cool. Would love to integrate more stop motion projects into our curriculum, but am having a hard time putting it all together. Any ideas?

Firekites - AUTUMN STORY - chalk animation from Lucinda Schreiber on Vimeo.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

A Tribute to My Gram

As I sat in the waiting room of my doctor's office today I listened as two little old men reminisced about the past. They talked about when they bought their homes and how much the city of McLean had changed since 1950. They chatted about their gardens and the wars they were in. As I listened, they really made me smile and remember the chats I used to have with my Grandma Marie. She taught me so many life lessons and there is not a day that goes by that I do not think about her. She always used to say to me "Missy Po each year you get older the faster the time goes, so cherish the time you have." There have been so many times since she has passed that I wished I could pick up the phone and give her a call. Even though I can't, I know in my heart that she is and will always be with me. So, in honor of Mother's day this weekend...I want to thank my "gram" for all the lessons, guidance, love, smiles, and hugs she gave me. Thanks Gram, I love you.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Monday, April 6, 2009

Be Your Own Advocate

I think I have just come to the realization that if you want anything to get done the right way you have to be your own advocate. For the past 16 months we have been dealing with leaking windows. I have been upset, angry, and calm throughout the whole situation. I finally said enough is enough and began making phone calls and complaints. I hope that my documentation of the process (pictures, emails, and service tickets) will help get the job done right this time!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

My Inaugural Post- Take 2

So here it is...my first official blog post. I have started this many times over, but I have never followed through. This is my attempt to follow through. There are many reasons that I feel blogs are a great way to communicate. I have learned so much in the past 3 years because I am reading...not primarily in books, but online. This is and will be a reflection of "My Learning Journey."