I would like to say Happy 21st Birthday to my oldest son, Sam. I cannot believe he is 21! How can I have a 21 year old when I still feel like a kid myself???
Sit down or put your shoes back on, I told one of my students. Umm… what??? Yes, you did just read that! I let my students take their shoes off, lay on the rug and read, & pay them (Lakeshore money, of course.). It seems like they’re at home. The class seems so homey, but it’s still school. They have to follow rules, but we have a good time.
Working for L.AU.S.D. vs. working for a private school is totally different. When I worked for L.A.U.S.D., I was always overwhelmed and never able to perform to the best of my ability. So much was required of me, but I couldn’t get it together. Working for a Catholic school where there are no weekly Tuesday meetings and not as much is required, I am suddenly in my element. I’m on top of my lesson plans. I am so prepared and get so much done. I am getting to the place in my teaching career where I’m supposed to be. For instance, the copier that everyone uses has been out of commission since Thursday afternoon. However, I am fine. I have all of my copies that I need for ALL of my subjects. The only copies I didn’t have was my Social Studies homework. The only reason I didn’t was because I just found the books in the closet that was ooooooh, so messy. (I am always inheriting someone else’s mess). It took myself and a parent a couple hours to get it straight.
When so much was expected of me, I couldn’t get it together. It could have been because I had so much on my plate. Whatever the reason I couldn’t get it together back then. Now that I don’t have the weekly Tuesday meetings, the grade level meetings, or the pressure, I am performing at my best.
Isn’t it ironic???
Since the Carnival was over the weekend, there was no school on Friday or today. We had staff development, I worked in my room & came home. I worked a little when I got home. Now, I need to go grocery shopping. It was a pretty restful day. The kids are back tomorrow. So, it all begins again tomorrow.
HERE’S TO CONTINUED SUCCESS!
I have a lot more to do, in regard to my planning & implementation. I knew that it would. This is not a surprise. I’m okay with doing the work because I have a system now. I’m simply refining it. I am in such a creative mode right now. I am definitely using it to my advantage.
Here’s to more work & loving it!
I tested my students’ reading fluency this month and was so happy with the results. One of my 5th grade students, who I knew could read faster, was too relaxed with no sense of urgency. I told him to think of reading the passage as a race. That is when he went from 144 to 188. There were similar experiences across the board. Every single student in my class increased their reading speed.
Student 1 went from 115 —-> 129
Student 2 went from 85 —–> 91
Student 3 went from 182 —–> 189
Student 4 went from 80 ——> 98
Student 5 went from 102 ——> 143
Student 6 went from 70 ——-> 81
Student 7 went from 71 ——> 98
Student 8 went from 169 —–> 179
Student 9 went from 103 ——> 149
Student 10 went from 63 ——> 114
Student 11 went from 135 ——> 174
Student 12 went from 139 ——> 170
& of course
Student 13 went from 144 ——>188
HERE’S TO CONTINUED SUCCESS!
I was recently alerted that my blog appears, in its entirety, @ thebloghub.com. I couldn’t believe it. I checked it out & simply could not believe it. Not only did I never give them permission to use my post (and make money from it), but I contacted them to take the site down. Do you think they did it??? Well, do you??? The answer is a big fat resounding no. I would like to know if anyone knows of any way to sue them or at the very least, get them to take it down. This is very frustrating. I have never made one thin dime from this blog that I have worked tirelessly on for over 3 long years. This is my baby! How dare they STEAL my intellectual property!
Before writing this post, I visited the site & it has changed. It’s not an exact copy of my site like it was this morning, but it has the exact same content with my name. I am so mad I could just spit.
***AGAIN, DO NOT, I REPEAT, DO NOT SIGN UP FOR BLOG HUB.COM. THEY WILL STEAL YOUR INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY & MAKE MONEY FROM IT.***
IF ANYONE CAN HELP ME, PLEASE CONTACT ME @ email@example.com
I love my classroom management system. It works so well for me. I use the Lakeshore money. I even use time sheets.
This is how it works. I have a price list. One list shows how to make money (h.w., classroom job, etc.,). While the other list shows how to lose money & go into debt (bad attitude, being off-task, etc.,).
They keep track of everything with their time sheet. Everyday, they have a list of items to track (See time sheet below). In order to get paid, they have to present their time sheet on Friday. If they lose it, I do not pay them. It is their responsibility to keep up with it for the entire week. Once they turn the time sheet in on Friday, I have them fill out the amount. I then have them write themselves a check that they are able to cash on Friday. This system works on their math skills, their behavior, and their responsibility. It helps them take ownership of their own education & behavior.
If you would like a copy of the time sheet and the price list, email me @ firstname.lastname@example.org
WEEKLY TIME SHEET
Name:__________________ Week of: _______________
|On task||x 2=|
|On time||x 2=|
|Notes:If you have less than $70. Explain why.|
On task= $2/day or $10/week
Job= $2/day or $10/week
On time= $2/day or $10/week
Prepared= $3/day or $15/week
Homework= $5/day or $25/week
Attitude= $6/day or $30/week
Total possible= $100/week
I set up a Scholastic Book Club in 2007, but never used it. Now, at my new school, I’m required to create a class website. So, I went back to the one I made at Scholastic. It’s not sufficient, but I still discovered a couple of features that I really like. I’m pretty happy with their shipping. I received my order within a week. Scholastic book club offers so many extras. I’ve already received 5 free books for my classroom library- Touching Spirit Bear by Ben Michaelsen, The Homework Machine Returns by Dan Gutman, Firegirl by Tony Abbott, Brian’s Hunt by Gary Paulsen, & The Titan’s Curse by Rick Riordan.
My class was super excited about receiving The Homework Machine Returns by Dan Gutman. They are really looking forward to the November 7th release date of the 5th Diary of A Wimpy Kid. I am so happy to have a class of readers!
I slept in this morning before the wonderful Home Going celebration I went to today. After I returned I decided to indulge in more of the napping. I woke up feeling refreshed. I’d been working so hard and been so tired that I am sleep deprived. However, I completed so much planning that I had time to relax today. Imagine that! I’m ahead on my planning. I will stick to my plan & stay ahead. As of now, I’ve completed planning my unit lesson plans for Phonics, Religion, & the 1st chapter of Social Studies. I will do the Reading lesson plans tomorrow. During the week, I will complete the Math & Science unit lesson plans. So, since it’s after 11 p.m., I hear the bed calling my name. I will heed its call.
HERE’S TO 2010!
I cannot believe how things just clicked for me this year. I was so scared going into this year. Quite frankly, I didn’t think I could do the job. Of course I took the job anyway & prayed. I didn’t stop there though. God helps those who help themselves. I knew none of the programs, so I buckled down.
- This Is Our Faith- the Religion program
- Oh, California & America Will Be- the Social Studies program
- Houghton Mifflin Reading- like Open Court Reading
- Discovery Works- the Science program
- Modern Press Study Curriculum- the Phonics program
- Houghton Mifflin English
I’ve looked at all of them thoroughly except the Science program. From the little that I’ve seen, I like it because it’s pretty hands on. I’m not going to start until next Friday when the parents donate the materials necessary to perform the experiments. I’ve worked harder in the past month than I ever have. But, it’s paying off.
One way that I’ve managed to complete so much is because of better time management than before. I’m going to post tips from my guest blogger, Brennon. Be on the lookout for his time management tips next week.
I know tomorrow will be better. It has to be! I honestly felt like quitting today. Yes, it was one of the days. The students just wouldn’t be quiet. I don’t know if it was because of the rain & the fact that they couldn’t go outside to play, but they were acting crazy. Four students were so disruptive that I actually had to put them in front of the class while I talked to make sure they didn’t interrupt me.
I used to be terrified of Sundays. Not anymore. I don’t dread them anymore! They are once again my friend. I can remember a time when Sunday was not so kind to me. It was during my first year of teaching, I was so excited to see Friday come because I didn’t have to teach for two whole days. They were heaven.
I loved Saturday because I could sleep in. Saturday was the best day because I got to spend it with my family. Something I didn’t get much of a chance to do during the week because I was so busy planning. It was the best day of the week to me.
“Oh, glorious sleep! How I missed thee!,” I would happily think, once I got a chance to do it.
But, Sunday! Oh, Sunday! Why did you have to come so quickly? Why did you pass by so quickly? Why do you haunt me Sunday???
Sunday can be a new teacher’s worst enemy. It should be a day of rest, but sadly it is not. It is a day of dread. It doesn’t have to be though. There are so many ways your first year can be easier. Look out for my series next week on how to make your first year easier. So, bring it on Sundays. I’m not scared of you anymore!
Until then! HERE’S TO 2010!
It’s a lot of fun getting to know your students. I’ve spent the past couple of weeks getting to know my students. It’s only been a month, but I know them pretty well. I have a pretty good class. Of course they’re not perfect, but who or what is!
It’s funny how every class is different. This class is a classroom full of readers. Since all of my experience has been with Special Education, this is totally new to me. I’m looking forward to discovering just how different General Education is. I’m working so hard and really enjoying it.
HERE’S TO 2010!
This week was very tiring. It wasn’t such a good week. I should know by now that that happens. Somehow, though, it still seems to sneak up on me. But, I digress. The reason I’m so proud has to do with one of my 4th grade students’ (Who I’ll call Michael) moment of epiphany regarding ownership of his education. Prior to this, he had no interest in school, class work, or homework. Don’t even mention reading!
Fast forward to the second week of school when I brought in my chapters books that include: Diary of A Wimpy Kid, The Secret Series by Pseudonymous Bosch, The Mysterious Benedict Society and Captain Underpants just to name a few. My students have been devouring them. The Secret Series was a really big hit with the girls; while Captain Underpants & Diary of A Wimpy Kid was a resounding hit with almost all the boys. Most importantly, it has been a huge hit with Michael. He absolutely loves Captain Underpants.
Here is the story of how he got started on his road to being a reader.
His father has thanked me profusely. He is very happy with Michael’s progress. So am I. But, I’m rambling yet again, so I will digress yet again and get back to the lecture at hand. Since I’m keeping better track of my student’s work (by way of portfolio), I have actually been on my P’s & Q’s. Today, I had my students complete a self-assessment of their progress for the month of September and was so, so, so, so happy with Michael’s response.
Michael finished his self-assessment and was ready to leave when he suddenly said, “I changed.”
Even though I knew perfectly well what he meant, I asked him what he meant.
(His words) Well, I like doing my class work now. I like reading. And I think I can. I think I can do it now.
I asked him when he thought he changed & what made him change. We talked about the moment during the second week when he half-heartedly completed an assessment in 10 minutes that should have taken 30. I knew that he hadn’t tried, so I refused to accept his assessment.
“No,” I told him. “I am not going to accept this. You did not try. Go back and really try. I will NOT accept this until you have given it your all.”
He was plenty mad at me, but he went back & tried. HARD. He got it after I had a small discussion with him. That is when everything changed. He turned his work in with a smile after I high-fived him. History was made for Michael at that point and time. I love those moments.