Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Wisdom for Wednesday - New Adventure (BIG News)!


Howdy partner! 
Today was Rodeo Day (our version of field day) so please forgive me if anymore western slang shows up in this post. ;-)

Another last day of the school year. 

Only there are a lot of other factors that made this last day different, sad, exciting, and even a little scary.

Remember I work in a small K-2 school. This year we had 44 students. Total.

Our staff includes 3 classroom teachers (K/PE teacher, 1st/Music teacher, and 2nd/Science teacher), a Title I teacher (reading specialist shared with the intermediate school), a special education teacher (half-time), 1 general education para, 2 special education paras, a school secretary/nurse, and a school cook/janitor. Let's count the principal, too, even though we have to share him with another building 20 minutes away.

The small staff means we are pretty close and comfortable. People come and they stay...for years...and years. I mean, when I got my job 4 years ago, one of the retiring teachers was my 5th and 6th grade teacher. That means positions don't open up often. And that also means that we are having to say goodbye to some more friends this year. :(

Our Title teacher is retiring after teaching for 31 years (in various postions)--20 of those in our district.

Our general education para is retiring after 14 years.

We are so sad to see them go! I cannot even tell you. Except that I cried. A lot. 

But that is not all...our little building is changing so much! 

With the expectation of a larger Kindergarten class next year, we have hired a new K teacher. TWO classes of K! We are actually having to do some rearranging and turn the music room into a classroom. CRAZY!

And now for the exciting (and a little sad) part...

Are you ready for the big news?

I am leaving 2nd grade. 

I am moving to the Title position next year! 

That means we hired another new teacher for 2nd grade.

Two new teachers AND still looking for a "superpara."
Rearranging and moving rooms.
New position for me.

It's all so different...this quote is fitting and the way I am trying to look at all the uncertainty.


Taken from this pin.

It was a difficult last day. Thinking it was probably my last day as a classroom teacher. I loved having "my kiddos" and my classroom; however, I'm also excited for this new adventure. The students I work with will become "my kiddos" and I will enjoy the challenge of helping them learn to love reading! :-)

That's all I've got for today. 
Meetings tomorrow morning and then check-out! Woohoo! 
Says the gal trying to forget the huge amount of work she has ahead of her trying to condense an entire classroom into an "office" space.


Sunday, May 21, 2017

10 Day Balloons

I know I have shared this every year, but you never know who might be new to the blog...so...

Each morning, I will pop a balloon. 
Inside is a piece of paper with a fun activity or treat written on it for us to enjoy.

I have two simple rules for the balloons that help tremendously with the final days of craziness.

1. If you get in trouble, you don't do/have the next balloon activity/treat.
2. If you complain about the activity or treat, you don't get to enjoy it.

This year our 10 day balloons included the following:

10-gum (Wed)
9-write with pen (Thurs)
8-Art Day (Friday)
7-Nature Walk (Monday)
6-Mystery Reader (Tuesday)
5-Move Desks (Wednesday)
4-Extra Recess (Thursday)
3-Kickball (Friday)
2-Movie (Monday)
1-Ice Pops (Tuesday)

We have 2 more days left for our balloons!
The kids get so excited about the balloons and popping them each morning!

1.  We started with gum day and they were so excited to be able to chew gum in school!!

2.  Pen day-I was amazed of how careful they were when they did their work because they knew that they couldn't erase the pen.  (I might have to let kids use pens more often :-)).  

We had a math competition in math and worked with our partners to finish up our math books.  These two boys were so excited and really thought they were "hot shots"  because they finished their math books and started on Crystal's 2nd grade hotshots packet!  Plus they got to use their pens on the packet!

3.  Art Day-The kids got a white piece of construction paper and used their markers (they were extremely excited to use markers because we don't use them a lot in first grade) to draw and color whatever they wanted.

4.  Nature Walk-Sorry I forgot to take my camera outside and take pictures of the kids on this day.  The kids got to go outside in the field and explore nature with a magnifying glass.
5.  Mystery Reader-We have a nice little patio area outside our room and we got together with the other first grade class and read our story with them outside on the patio area.  It was a beautiful day outside!

6.  Move Desks-They got to move their desks anywhere in the room that they wanted to move them.  They thought this was the absolute best!!

7.  Extra Recess-You know they loved this one for sure!


8.  Kickball-We had planned on going outside and playing a game of kickball against the other first grade class, but it was storming, so we went to plan B.  It became a paint or sand art day.  They got to choose either to paint or use colored sand to make a picture.  


9.  Tomorrow will be movie and popcorn day!

10.  Tuesday will be ice pops day!

Have a great week!



Thursday, May 18, 2017

Wisdom for I Guess Thursday!!

Well, after making a little fun of Crystal for missing her Wisdom for Wednesday, I forgot all about Wisdom for Wednesday as well this week.  So, I'm making up for it with a little Wisdom for Thursday!

We have 3 days left of school and I always forget how busy and tired I can get this time of year.  I found some cute little sayings that I thought says a lot about how it is like at the end of the year. 





Finally, as the year starts to come to an end, I thought this says a lot about our years as teachers:



If you are finished with school, I hope you are enjoying your summer.  If not, I hope you are getting enough rest!

Have a great day!



Saturday, May 13, 2017

End of the Year Craziness = More Than Five for Friday!

Hey there! 

How are you holding up? Are you done yet? Still plugging along?

I have 8 more days...which is especially painful after my FB memory this morning was from the last day of school last year! Now don't misunderstand, I love my kiddos, but this teacher is completely past end of the year teacher tired. ;-)

So tired, apparently, that I completely spaced the Wisdom post on Wednesday. Sorry about that. It did not even cross my mind until last night! Kristi says that I have to make up for it by posting for the next six months. LOL! 

Anyway, all this end of the year craziness that is wearing me out has at least given me PLENTY of pictures for Five for Friday.


Let's get started, shall we?

1

Prairie Day!


Our little rural school is in the heart of the Flint Hills, and we received this map exhibit as part of an effort to give students a deeper understanding of the place where they live. 

The Flint Hills Map & Education Center gave a presentation earlier in the year at an inservice and encouraged teachers to try more place-based learning. As the K-2 science teacher, I felt like I needed to give it a try.

Fortunately, one of the teachers with many of the lessons on the website is one of our own former teachers. She agreed to come out of retirement for the day and help with Prairie Day! We had six rotations throughout the day where students learned about the Flint Hills, prairie grasses and plants, old sod houses, and prairie wildlife. Next week, we will visit the Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve for our field trip.

2

Balloon Countdown


Yes, I do a countdown.
No, I am not a bad teacher.
Sorry, I get tired of some of the "articles" I see floating around on social media.

Every year, I do a balloon countdown. Inside each balloon is a special activity or treat for my kiddos to enjoy. It makes the last 10 days a fun way to celebrate a great year together (it also could be considered bribery for good behavior). 

I had to miss our first balloon this year for a teacher training. :-(

But I prepped the kids and they handled it well. So far, we have had Bubble Gum Day and Art Day.

3

Mother's Day


We baked muffins for our moms and made these cute paintings.



4

Team Builder


I organized a painting party for our staff. Due to busy schedules this time of year, I included some other people too (i.e. my daughter on the left). We had a fun time and I liked my painting until I say hers... ;-)

5

Farm Day

Our FFA teacher and members put together a great Farm Day where we got to learn about farm equipment and animals. We also made ice cream (baggie method) and planted flowers. 
  



Bonus

Date Night


Nice weather means we get the hotrod out for date night...only this time we had a little trouble. Thankfully, this guy knows his engines. We coasted to the parts' store. He bought a new alternator, put it on, and away we went. My daughter has decided she should marry a mechanic too. :-)

That about covers it! 
Hope you have a wonderful, rest-filled weekend!



Saturday, May 6, 2017

Field Trip

We made it through our field trip to the zoo on Friday!!!  I don't know about you, but field trips exhaust me (mentally and physically).  I tend to worry the entire week, praying that I have done everything and set up everything that needed to be done and set up.  Then on the field trip, I'm praying everything goes well and nothing happens.  I saw this saying and thought how true it was.........

I don't know how many times I counted on Friday!

The kids had a great time and it was a beautiful day to go to the zoo (74 degrees!).  I think some of the animals at the zoo were feeling how I was feeling (many of them were asleep).  Here are some of the pictures that I snapped:







This is exactly how I was Friday night!

Have a great weekend!



Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Wisdom for Wednesday-Trusting God

Welcome to this weeks:  



Have you ever had a time in your life when you find your self asking "Why God?  Why?"  A time when you just don't understand why what is happening is happening and you just don't understand it?  The truth is God loves us and he has good for our lives, but that doesn't mean life is always easy.   We all go through difficult times and things happen that aren't fair.  Jesus tells us in John 16:33, " In the world you have tribulation and trials and  distress and frustration." I feel like it is important for us to understand this so we won't be confused and lose our faith in him when life is hard.   


Have a great day!




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