My Threshold!


Dear Readers,

I discovered something about myself last night. It was always my belief that I could take a nap later in the day in order to last long into the night. Well, I discovered that I was wrong. Even though I took a long nap and woke up at 7:30 p.m., I still tapped out about 10:30. I thought I could write and complete other work, but realized that I’d reached my threshold. I was beginning to do Midnight thinking. That’s when I realized that I needed to throw in the towel.

-Signed, No Longer in Denial!

 

***WATCH THE VIDEO from 19:17-19:37- This is what my writing is like when I’ve reached my threshold.***

 

 

So Much To Write About!


Dear Readers,

Usually at the end of the year I have what I call The Quickening. For those of you who are not Syfy fans, that’s a reference to the movie Highlander. In the movie there are beings- Immortals- who are fighting for the right to be “The Only One.” In order to be the only one, the Immortals hunt each other down, fight to the death with swords and chop off the other Immortal’s head in order to claim their knowledge (usually hundreds of years), which comes out in the form of violent lightning that engulfs the victor & literally deposits the knowledge in the victor’s head. Well, I said all that to say that’s how I feel. The only thing is that I usually feel this at the end of the year when I’ve had time to process and sort through everything I’ve learned up until that point. My new job is so intense and so all encompassing that I feel The Quickening now. What’s even stranger is that I felt it as it was happening. I even helped encouraged the process.

At the beginning of the school year I could tell that I was in for quite an experience; I could feel it. There seemed to be magic and a sense of the possibilities in the air. I could feel that this job could be what I needed and more. I have my church’s breakfast banquet to attend, so I will write more later about my Quickening.

 

Resource Lab, Final Part 2!


Dear Readers,

The finals went very smoothly. I was able to see in real time who did or did not complete it. One con: it would have been easier to have a paper final. I was so in love with the idea of a paperless final that I didn’t stop to think it all the way through. Unless I can think of a better plan, next semester I think I’ll give a “paper” exam. I’ll keep you updated!

Resource Lab Final!


Dear Readers,

FINALS

I’m so proud of myself. This is my first year in a Resource Lab/Learning Center. As a result, there were so many things I didn’t know I had to do- namely create and administer a final. I wasn’t really sure what to do, so I cobbled together everything we’d done, reviewed it, and gave a final on it.

Well, the thing I’m particularly proud about is how quickly I threw my final together. Not only that, I’m proud of how I put it together. I used Google forms. That way I was able to see who completed the test right away. Not only that, I’m getting ready to grade them and it should be a snap. Wish me luck. I’ll let you know how it goes.

]ust One More Day!!!


Dear Readers,

Shorter Christmas Vacation

I simply cannot wait until tomorrow @ 1:00 p.m. Why? V-A-C-A-T-I-O-N!!! I will be off for three, read ’em, three glorious weeks. I’m going to do a lot of resting and preparing for Christmas during the first week. After that I’m going to get down to planning at least a month’s worth of lessons. I have a list of things I want to teach my students. The first one being Executive Functioning skills. If you don’t know what that is, I guess you’re just going to have to read my blog to find out!

Until then!

Overdue Book Reviews!


Dear Readers,

I haven’t posted a book review in a long time. I’m going to remedy that during the break. I may even post a few. I think I’ll review Patricia Polacco’s “January Sparrow.” It was such a fantastic book. I loved it like I love all of Patricia Polacco’s book. I honestly haven’t read a book of hers that I don’t like. Others that I think I’ll review are: Applemando’s Dream, Pink & Say, Mr. Lincoln’s Way, Bully, Junkyard Wonders, & My Rotten Redheaded Older Brother (in memory of Patricia’s older brother, Richie, who recently passed). I’ll kick them out over the break. Until then!

Sicky McSickerton Me!


I am so sick. It hit so suddenly that I was totally unprepared for it. I didn’t think I’d get sick this year because I’m happy and I’m not super-stressed. I was ridiculously sick on Wednesday morning, but since I only teach in the mornings on Wednesday, I knew I’d be finished before 10:00 a.m. Once I finished my 2nd period, I went home. I got in the bed and have not been out of the house since. I’m debating whether or not to go to work tomorrow. It all depends on how I feel in the morning. Hopefully I’ll feel well enough. If not I will simply stay in the bed and recuperate. It’s Friday, so I’ll have the rest of the weekend to recuperate and be back at work bright & early Monday to give benchmarks on Monday & Tuesday, & finals on Wednesday, Thursday, & Friday.

Here’s hoping I feel better soon!

Knocked it Out the Park!!!


Dear Readers,

I’m not sure why I’m surprised that I knocked the ball out the park with my latest PD that I presented with my co-teacher. Presentations are my strong suit. So, it should have come as no surprise.

The purpose of the PD was to explain what Passports are and how they’re related to the IEP. Let me explain what Passports are. They’re documents created by my charter school organization that include the student’s lexile level, present level of performance, and goals for the GenEd teachers to use in their planning.

Well, the Passports were updated and given out during the first month of school. However, when they were given out, only 3/4 of the SpEd staff was present. The 11th/12th grade teacher was absent because his son was having medical complications, my assistant was on her honeymoon, and I had a PD to attend at the home office. I said all of that to say that we were unavailable to explain to the GenEd teachers how to use them. Needless to say, some of the teachers weren’t using them because they didn’t know how.

To help the GenEd teachers, we (the SpEd staff) created an AT-A-GLANCE spreadsheet for 9th-12th grade that listed important accommodations across the top, students names down the left hand side of the spread sheet, and then checked off which students received which accommodation. I, along with my co-teacher, explained all of this to the teachers. They were very grateful. They asked many questions and received clarification on questions they had.

My A.P. even sent me the results of the PD survey. The results were overwhelmingly positive. I have to say that the best thing to come out of presenting the PD was the teachers’ understanding that the IEP is a legal document because I kept hammering it home. Whenever someone asked a question about accommodations, I related it back to the IEP being a legal document. They got it!

I’ll keep you updated on further PDs. Bye for now!

I Should Have Known!!!


Dear Readers,

As I was pushing into one of the math classes I support, I was taken aback that a student I was helping in 9th grade didn’t know her multiplication tables. Now, this particular student is something. In the beginning of the school year she was constantly being put out of the English class for misbehavior. This goes with my post on the chicken or the egg years ago regarding students who would rather be thought of a “bad” than “stupid.”

I am so mad at myself for not connecting the dots faster. I was so shocked as I had to scaffold lower and lower to accommodate her lack of basic foundational skills. She was just sitting there with a blank look on her face. Once I “really” saw that blank look, I knew that she’d been misbehaving at the beginning of school because she didn’t want anyone to know about her and her lack of knowledge.

I should have known!!!