Saturday, September 10, 2011

Short but long... the story of my week. It was a 4 day week at school but it sure did seem to drag on forever!

Hubby and Tobie went with me to school on Monday (yes, I worked on Labor Day) to help me get some things done. My big project was to get some nap packets together. What is a nap packet? Something quiet for my non-nappers to do while the others are napping. Many of my non-nappers entertain themselves quietly during rest time but I have a few that just can't seem to get a handle on that. I don't expect them to fall asleep but I do expect them to respect other people that want to rest. So, I am creating a packet that they can get out after 20-25 minutes (so the ones that want or need to rest can).

Tuesday, I was able to laminate all the stuff for the nap packets. I even drug it home to cut it out but ended up dragging it back to school in full lamination--- none of it cut out.

We read The Little Engine That Could to get an understanding of Expectation #6- 'We will help recognize every effort and applaud it.' The little people colored their own engine to take home and I made a class train to hang up. Each child put their name on a 'box car' to go behind the engine. It looks pretty cute.

On Wednesday, we read The Recess Queen to go with Expectation #7- 'We will encourage each other to do our best.' 
"A schoolyard bully is enlightened by the new kid in class in this lively story about the power of kindness and friendship. "Mean Jean was Recess Queen/ and nobody said any different," the tale begins. Each day at recess, Mean Jean blasts through the playground and her cowering classmates so that she can kick, swing and bounce before anyone else. No one dare cross her path: "She'd push 'em and smoosh 'em, lollapaloosh 'em." But when tiny Katie Sue, a new student, arrives, all bets are off. Unaware of the playground hierarchy, the new girl enthusiastically kicks, swings and bounces before the Recess Queen gets the chance. Her role usurped, Mean Jean moves toward a meltdown, until Katie Sue makes her an offer she finds difficult to refuse: an invitation to play together. O'Neill's (Loud Emily) text brims with fun-to-say phrases that fit a rollicking rhythm, and her assessment of recess dynamics feels authentic. Huliska-Beith's (The Book of Bad Ideas) memorable Jean busts out of the pages, all sneer, bluster and freckles. Swirling perspectives in the gouache-and-collage artwork provide a sense of movement and largesse. And humorous details, such as steam coming from Mean Jean's ears, or her bouncing another child like a ball, playfully convey the underlying drama of the situation."                 -Thank you for that synopsis of the story
After reading the story, we made crowns out of bulletin board border. (I knew keeping that would come in handy some day) Then, I told my kids they could 'wear them to Rise and Shine tomorrow' thinking that "tomorrow" was Friday. I was really disappointed when I realized "tomorrow" was only Thursday.

Day 13 (Thursday) was a really long day. It felt like my very first day of teaching. ever. I can't put my finger on what made it seem so draining but it did. One of my friends just has a hard time staying focused. Always in their own world, never in line order, I felt like I was on a chase all day to keep up.

In trying to 'scare' this child straight, I said they might have to hold hands with another student in the hall. About an hour and a half into school a sweet little friend offered to hold hands to help make better choices. It was precious. They are now hall partners.

I also received a new student. Funny thing, I knew the day before but did I get anything ready? No; however, I remember last year complaining here about not knowing in advance. I guess I thought the family may not actually show up. OR maybe I have just gotten more seasoned in flying by the seat of my pants. Who knows.

We finished up our 8 Expectations with the Lion and the Mouse fable. #8 is 'We will practice virtuous living using the life principles.' We made a lion mask on a paper plate and a little mouse.

I bolted right after school to head home and on our way to Stillwater for a Thursday night game, which made for a long Friday.

Thursday night Stillwater experienced a BLACK OUT... on the field!

My Boogley Bear and I

Isn't this SWEET?! I like it.

Friday wasn't as draining as Thursday but I started out tired from the day before. I went up to Rise and Shine only to hear, "I thought you said we could wear our crowns today.?!" Crap! So I ran down to get them and passed them out. They looked really cute in them! When we got back to our classroom, I told them to "put your crown on your wrist and swing it around. Now throw it in the air. Pick it up and throw it again. Now pick it up and put it on your head because that is the last time I want to see it off of your head." Sneaky, I know. It worked though. I only had to tell one kid to put the crown away and there were probably 6 of them that were actually wearing them at the end of the day. Most of my friends asked me if they could put them in their backpack!

In the middle of the day, I decided after school I was going to have a 'power hour'. I started this a couple days before school started because I never could get anything done. People coming and going, me leaving my room, whatever the distraction, I couldn't get anything done. So, I hung a note on the outside of my locked door that said, "I'm having power hour. Unless you are bleeding, barfing or being bullied, please come back at ___. " Fortunately, I didnt have to do this as all my work peeps left since it was Friday afternoon. I got a lot put away but still have some work to do. I worked in my room until 7, then finished cutting out lamination in the gym while my PE teacher worked on cleaning. It is fun to have friends to work with but stinks that we never see each other during the day. So, we stayed until 10:00 catching up.

Another thing that may have made the week seem hectic was the 3 substitutes we had for our assistant. Not that the ladies were bad but the kids were used to their person. Now, we are on the hunt for a new assistant. Here's to hoping we find a good fit. :)

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