Wednesday, December 21, 2011
Monday, December 19, 2011
Saturday, December 10, 2011
Saturday, November 26, 2011
Add the wood base and boards for height.
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
School was only a half-day. I left within 30 minutes of the last bell. Couldn't wait. Went to Trader Joe's for a case of spiced cider then to Costco for several other things. Since I went when I did, it wasn't a horrible experience. Got home and have had a great evening, working on making our home more enjoyable for the little ones who are coming to stay.
We've been converting my husband's office into our grandchildren's bedroom and playroom and we are close to finished. Here's the latest:
Gracie's bed, with a sweet white teddy bear
Sunday, November 20, 2011
Saturday, I sanded, stained and sealed the old crib that I found on Craig's List. Today I asked my hubby to stop at Target so I could pick up some crib bedding. I finished quickly and was ready to head out when he mentioned wanting to check out the toys. Guess who's almost finished with Christmas shopping?! Amazing! This is so much fun!
Saturday, November 12, 2011
Sunday, November 06, 2011
Saturday, November 05, 2011
Today was another tiring day but for a completely different reason. A couple weeks ago, my mother's dishwasher went on the blink and ruined a section of her hardwood floors. Mom's house dates from the late 1940's and the dining room floors were amazing. She decided to pull up all the carpets and have them refinished. A really smart move. They are gorgeous. She's been in a hotel for four nights (she wouldn't stay with us, didn't want to disturb us) and I helped her get back home today. But we couldn't walk on the floors until after 1 o'clock this afternoon so first we raked leaves in her front yard. After that we went to her church for their annual bazaar. Lots of handmade goodies, toys, and such. We each spent less than $20. Not bad. Then we went across the street to Lincoln Elementary for their annual toys and books sale. I got a box of books and several nice toys for $20! The books were a steal, nearly all hardback picture books for my little ones who are coming in a few weeks. Have you priced little kids' books these days? They are so expensive. I think I bought close to $150 worth for that 20 dollar bill! After lunch and a quick trip to the store, Mother and I went back to her house. We dusted walls and doors, got the pictures back up, rehung the drapes, and created enough room in each bedroom so she could watch TV in one and sleep in the other. We can't put furniture back in her living and dining rooms until Sunday evening and may wait until Monday after school. We'll see. She's just so glad to be back home.
Another good thing is that today/tomorrow is Fall Back! I love adding an hour of sleep to my day and of all times to do it, this week is perfect.
Thursday, November 03, 2011
My 8th graders are back in novels of their choice, and the 7th graders are working through parts of speech. My writer's workshop kids are tearing things up! They love writing and I love that they love it! I can't wait to do "monikers" tomorrow. It's a fun little exercise with names. Yesterday we talked about puns and they each came up with five. Some were hilarious and others were quite painful. My favorite assignment that I have them write is the letter to themselves - 15 years from now. But they won't get that assignment for a few weeks, after Thanksgiving. January is going to be poetry, every day, from the beginning of the month to the end of the 2nd quarter. I found a sample unit online from NYC that I am hoping to apply to some of the projects I have used in the past.
The big news is that those two little kids pictured in my previous post are going to have a baby brother or sister in May. Yeah... can you say three under three? My kids can! And I can't wait!
Monday, October 31, 2011
My hubby is mending well. The eye area is healed; the leg is healed. But that arm... it is going to take time, a lot of time! The doctors took a big chunk of flesh from his wrist to patch the hole they made in his face. Since there are no functioning nerves in that area of his face, he feels no pain. However, the wrist is an entirely different story. One wrong turn and the man is in agony! It makes me want to cry to see him suffer like that. Honestly, it is getting so much better. He is radically more capable of caring for himself. He even takes care of all his bandages but one, the ace that wraps around his wrist and forearm. It has been six weeks since surgery; healing is a slow but steady process, and we are grateful for the progress.
School continues to demand our mental and physical energy. My students are doing back-to-back novels since I missed a critical two-week period in September when they should have been in a novel study. I decided to leave the grammar for the sub and concentrate on the literature upon my return. It was a wise move but there's still a lot to accomplish in a very short time. November is full of holidays, conferences, and potential snow-days. (From my mouth to God's ear!)
In 50 days, our kids from France arrive for their first home assignment. We called it furlough, back in the day. We are looking forward to seeing Gracie and Eliott again.
They are growing so fast. This past week, they moved into a new home in Chartres, France. They loved their little village in Jouy, but this location is more central to their ministry and the house is slightly more than twice the size of their prior teeny 500-square-foot apartment.
So as October fades away, we are grateful for the blessings of the past six weeks. As I look back over all we went through over these two months, I see God's hand of strength and healing. I don't know what lies ahead, not sure I want to know, but more than ever before, I believe God is in control. I'm simply going to let him deal with it all.
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
Sunday, October 09, 2011
Sunday, October 02, 2011
I have a pack-n-play for Eliott but I am looking for a full-size crib that I can set up instead. I have a call into a Craig's list post for one from IKEA. Eliott is not a little guy. He weighs well over 25 pounds and is pretty tall. He'll be a year next Wednesday! Oh how we miss our French kiddos but it's all good; we understand what they are doing and are thrilled that they are able to experience the French world as a family. But I'd be lying if I said I wasn't looking forward to Christmas! They will arrive around the 20th and be with us for six weeks! This will be a super good thing.
And it will be so much fun to watch Eliott grow and develop over that time. What a blessing our little ones are to us.
Friday, September 30, 2011
Saturday, September 10, 2011
Sunday, September 04, 2011
One of the things I do in my Bible class is the Silent Study. I teach a curriculum published by Lifeway called Character Quest - I love it! Each week, I introduce another character trait that should be a part of our lives as Christians. In addition to that, I have gone through scripture (mostly New Testament) and found short passages that apply to the particular trait being taught. Students come in each morning to find a new passage on the board. They get their journal and answer two questions: What does this passage mean? How can I apply this to my life? We just finished the first week of school and the introduction to the textbook. The passage I chose this week was Colossians 3:12-14. Students wrote about verse 12 on Wednesday and verses 13-14 on Thursday. (Friday is chapel - no silent study.) On Thursday or Friday afternoon, I read the journals and jot short response notes to my students. The pain that came from Thursday's passage about forgiving... it took me by surprise. It always does. I know students have broken homes and lives, but I am constantly surprised at the open, intense pain that 7th graders are willing to write about in a journal.
At the end of the day, Friday afternoon, we held our traditional first week finished junior high party. Before we ate all the junk food that the kids brought, we played a game - Just Like Me - students noted their favorites: books, food, musicians, etc. and then had to find someone who marked the same answer. It takes about 15 minutes to play. The 8th graders were acting too cool for the game until I introduced the prize: 1 Free Homework Pass for any of my classes. Suddenly, they were all over it! One new girl had a tough time with the game. She wrote her answers and then wandered the room, from person to person. I could see she was trying. Basically, she placed herself next to someone different every minute or so, and hoped that person would ask to see her paper. Shy is an understatement. But I know a bit about her story (family members with addictions, abuse, moving, legal problems) and her sense of who she is, of what she's worth, doesn't match the beautiful little person I see. And she is having an awful time trying to write. It is as though she is bound with ropes and cannot move off a certain position. I ache for her. She's in my writer's workshop and has yet to get a full sentence on paper. I have a feeling that I need to get into poetry quickly, much sooner than I usually do. I think it will open her more than fiction writing.
Books are therapeutic; they can help children heal. They allow students to identify with characters who have survived similar pain and sorrow. We live in a broken world, with fractured lives and relationships. Anything that helps children find a pathway through the pain is a good thing.
Thursday, September 01, 2011
Saturday, August 27, 2011
I've made a few other changes as well. Last year I placed my parts of speech posters on the back wall but I've brought them to the front again. Students kept getting out of their seats to check out the definitions and examples, so it is worth bringing them back to the front.
I posted a question on my facebook account about how to sort books in the classroom library and almost everyone said by genre. My initial reaction had been to do that, but getting the opinions of people I respect made it quite easy to follow up on the idea. I'm going to try to push the students to be careful with re-shelving. Right... Oh well, as long as they're reading!
There has also been a lot of renovation going on at school, notably the boys' bathroom near the school library and sixth grade classroom. The day before the Meet and Greet for students and teachers, that hallway looked like this:
Sunday, August 21, 2011
Saturday, as I pruned away at my plants, I thought about my mother's comment. How much am I counting on my children, grandchildren, students... knowing what to do because I assume they have paid attention to what I have done? The truth is that I did watch my mother plant and cultivate her flowers and vegetables for at least a couple decades. But I didn't really learn anything until I asked questions and she provided the answers. She was always willing to share her knowledge; I wasn't always paying attention.
We have to speak the words. Do we want our children to be polite, well-mannered? Instruction is needed. Do we want our kids to love books and reading? We must read to them. Are we hoping our children will find a valuable relationship with Christ? We have to talk to them, share our Christian experience, pray with them. We cannot assume it will be caught - it must be taught.
The other thing I realized as I was pruning was that it was taking a very long time. I spent well over an hour at the job. I realized that I could have nipped the suckers (little growths that appear between a branch and the main stems of the plant) as they appeared and it would have taken just a few minutes. Since I waited until I had fruit-loaded plants, I had to be quite careful when I cut, and the job was far more tedious than necessary. The same is true in our lives as parents, as teachers. If, from the very beginning, we start right and consistently do all that is required to raise up well-mannered readers who love Christ (my prior examples), the outcome may be what we hope for - fruit bearers. I'm grateful to my mother for all the lessons she has taught me over the years. I just hope I remember them better than I did the pruning.
Thursday, August 18, 2011
I have planned five weeks of lessons. I have photocopied all the work I will need, which has turned out to be a mixed bag... I was told my class was full, and I would have no more... and then, yesterday, we accepted another student. I was not happy as that means I get to go back and make one more copy of everything! But I got over it when I realized if we get two more, we'll hire another teacher so I'm really hoping that will happen. Plus the new student is fluent in French! How often does that happen?! Never in this neck of the woods. I'm excited to have her for that very reason. (For those who do not know, I'm also fluent in French - or I was!)
Yesterday afternoon, Mrs. History Teacher and I worked on student scheduling for junior high enrichment and elective classes. Mrs. H.T. is the same age as my youngest son, but we get along as though the decades of separation were not there. She is an excellent teacher, incredibly organized and creative, and I'm so grateful to work with her. We complement each other quite well; what I don't think of, she does - and vice versa. In addition to scheduling, I have the chapels for September all lined up with speakers, and I have my stuff out of boxes and on the walls, journals in the proper bins, books in the cases. Honestly, I could start tomorrow... but have another week to go. Meetings begin the 24th and students show up the 31st. I have a feeling that this is going to be an interesting year!
Monday, August 15, 2011
Wednesday, August 10, 2011
Sunday, August 07, 2011
Today my husband preached both services at our church. He did an amazing job sharing the Word and some of his own story. God used him powerfully. After that, we attended my annual family reunion. My dad had 17 siblings: 10 brothers and sisters, 1 half-brother, and 6 step-brothers and step-sisters. Most left Kansas as soon as they could - around age 17 or 18 - and moved to Western Washington state. Every year since the mid-1940's, the family has come together on the first Sunday of August for a huge potluck picnic. As a kid growing up, I really looked forward to this event. My cousins were more than family; they were my friends. We had a blast as kids. Now things have changed a bit. The main thing is that we only have three of the originals left: Uncle John (90 in January), Aunt Margaret (87?), and Uncle Walter (79). All the others are gone... and we miss them. The stories are not quite so colorful or heart-rending. Many came from the old country (German Russia) and lived through the Great Depression. And every one of them made something exceptional of his/her life. All of us kids were able to go to college if we wanted to and most of us did. The stories we share are memories of them, plus it is good to see everyone again.
It's been a good weekend of reflection about my family and how they have allowed me to be the person I am today. I am so fortunate, so blessed!
Wednesday, August 03, 2011
Monday, August 01, 2011
Legacy (Nichole Nordeman)
I want to leave a legacy
How will they remember me?
Did I choose to love? Did I point to You enough
To make a mark on things?
I want to leave an offering
A child of mercy and grace who
blessed your name unapologetically
And leave that kind of legacy
The chorus says exactly what I feel. I want my grandchildren to know that they are loved unconditionally, by Jesus and by us. I want them to believe that they can change the world - because they will - for good or not so good, we all do it. I love all five of them so much; we are so blessed!
Friday, July 29, 2011
Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Books Read in 2011
- Essays 1: First Series - Ralph Waldo Emerson
- Stuck in the Middle (Sister to Sister) by Virginia Smith
- Deeper Water by Robert Whitlow
- Hide in Plain Sight by Marta Perry
- Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
- The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
- The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
- Drums of War by Edith Morris Hemingway
- The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins
- The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
- Understood Betsy by Dorothy Canfield Fisher
- Emma by Jane Austen
- Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi
- Heaven is for Real by Todd Burpo
- Fools Rush In by Janice Thompson
- Invisible by Lorena McCourtney
- The Apothecary’s Daughter by Julie Klassen
- Fated to be Free by Jean Ingelow
- Milkweed by Jerry Spinelli
- Fated to be Free by Jean Ingelow
- The Red House Mystery by A.A. Milne
- The Heart of Rachael by Kathleen Thompson Norris
- A City Schoolgirl by May Baldwin
- Secret Adversary by Agatha Christie
- I Have Lived A Thousand Years by Livia Bitton-Jackson
- Evergreen: A Christmas Tale by Richard Taylor
- “Hard Creek Bridge” a short story by Isaac Sweeney
- Dandy Detects: A Victorian San Francisco Story by M. Louisa Locke
- A Chance in Time by Ruth Ann Nordin
- Summons From A Stranger by Debra Diaz
- A Lady of Quality by Frances Hodgson Burnett
- The Cloister and the Hearth by Charles Reade
- Teddy’s Button by Amy LeFeuvre
- The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
- The Summerhouse by Jude Deveraux
- The Pelican Brief by John Grisham
- The Fifth of March: A Story of the Boston Massacre by Ann Rinaldi
- April Morning by Howard Fast
Through it All
You see me through the seasons
Cover me with Your hand
And lead me in Your righteousness
And I look to You
And I wait on You
I'll sing to You Lord
A hymn of Love
For Your faithfulness to me
I'm carried in everlasting arms
You'll never let me go
Through it all
Monday, July 25, 2011
Friday, July 22, 2011
We played games at home and then packed a sandwich picnic and headed down to the lake to play and eat. Sitting on the dock, the two adorables asked Grandpa all kinds of questions about snakes, mosquitoes, and water lilies.
Tired children slept well and after french toast and a few morning cartoons, we headed out to Watershed Park to hike the two-mile trail. It was gorgeous, mid-60's, sunny, and sheltered with a canopy of greenery. When a boy sees a good climbing tree, he has to climb it. It's the law of the universe.
After the hike, the smiles were even bigger than before we started. A perfect summer day.
Wednesday, July 20, 2011
I am more than happy to say it was a good week. All the tests were negative for cancer. We also learned a lot about some of the issues T will face with the orbit. We learned that the skin graft is far more sensitive than we realized and will probably always present some issues. Six weeks of intense radiation will do that. The only awful moment came when the doctor, our fabulous Dr. Esmaeli, decided that the lump needed a needle biopsy just to confirm her diagnosis. It was extremely painful and it had to be done twice! Not fun! However, the reason it had to be done twice was that the doctor doing the procedure was unable to harvest enough cells for the lab. After the second dig, getting what he needed, he informed us that usually when cancer is present, the fluid vomits into the needle. His word, not mine. This did not happen and the initial reaction is that the lump is part of the restorative process: scar tissue, for us laymen.
So we are home again and thanking the Lord for health and a future. I am grateful every single day, that I can grow old with his man, my high school boy friend, the love of my life.
While we were there (in 104* temps!) we did some vacationing. We went to Galveston for the first time and returned to Spring, the site of an old-time village, full of cool stuff. We think we found a coffee table to replace our hand-me-down of 11 years. We'll see. We haven't received the medical bills yet and they promise to be significant. Not that I care - I don't care - I'll pay them off over ten years if I have to; I have my husband!
Friday, July 08, 2011
I read something on a blog that I am sure I have seen before but never written down: "Flatter me, and I may not believe you. Criticize me, and I may not like you. Ignore me, and I may not forgive you. Encourage me, and I will not forget you. Love me, and I may be forced to love you." William Arthur Ward.
I think the encourage part is the one that sticks out to me. Many years ago, during some of our initial days in ministry, I heard a sermon or read something about encouragement changing people's lives. Since that time in Vancouver, I have really tried to take that idea to heart and intentionally plant encouragement into the lives of others. I'm not always good at it. Sometimes the critical part of me takes over and I see everything negatively, but that is really not who I want to be. I deeply desire to see the world with optimism. I want to see the potential in people, especially children, and lift them so they can become stronger and have the desire to keep moving forward. As I deal with students and colleagues, I try to ask myself, What if this person was my child, my sister, my brother? How would I want someone to respond to him/her? That helps me a lot.
As much as I want to be an encourager to others, I also want to do it for myself. I want to tell myself that I can more than I can't. I want to forgive myself for my mistakes and keep trying to do better. I want to believe that I will make a difference in the world by making a difference in the life of one child or many, the number doesn't matter so much.
So... time to get moving and start the things I have on my to do list for this day.
Thursday, July 07, 2011
And there is no twin mattress creating chaos in the kitchen.
Wednesday, July 06, 2011
My hubby sweetly gave his school office desk unit to one of his assistants because she kept hurting her leg on the old one she had. That meant we moved his executive desk (read large) from home to his school office. Then we realized he needed a computer desk at school so we took the one I had used for a couple years (pro-cert), painted it black, and moved it over. That made room in the guest room for a chair. Nice.
Next we decided to put a daybed in what was once his dedicated home office. We have four girls coming and I hate putting people on the floor to sleep, even little people. Our kids brought over the frame for their daybed minus the hardware. They're looking for that in between the three extremely active adorables demanding attention, swimming lessons, and chasing after a big dog named Scout who likes to run off. I also have the twin mattress in my kitchen/family room.
The hubby had a tall three-unit bookcase that matched his executive desk so we moved two of them to the hallway (we have a super-wide hallway) and the middle one with doors to his office. It fit perfectly.
Last night, older son and family stayed for dinner because after dropping off the daybed, dad started showing his many books to son and son started packing them into boxes and my laundry basket to take home. By nearly seven o'clock, little Sierra was begging me to feed her so burgers on the grill worked quickly and satisfied her and the rest of us.
So now I have various books, knick knacks, and office supplies scattered in several rooms. I don't know where to start! Augh! I think I'll go find boxes and see if I can eliminate some of the clutter. I'll just stack the boxes in the garage. But I must say, at least the guest room is ready!
Thursday, June 30, 2011
Last Saturday, first-born granddaughter Kayla was a flower girl in her mother's cousin's wedding. At the rehearsal, Kayla met the other flower girl. Evidently the bride's mother works with the deaf and the little girl walking down the aisle with Kayla was one of her students, not completely deaf but seriously challenged. Additionally, the little girl reads lips, a fascinating skill. The connection between the two girls was instantaneous and their practice was flawless.
If there is a word to describe Kayla it is Kindness. Although a bit shy, she is extremely tenderhearted and kind to others, always putting herself in the other person's shoes, so to speak. After the wedding rehearsal was the big dinner. I do not know the little girl's name so I'm just going to give her one: Rosa. It solidifies the connection with my Kayla Rose and indicates the little one's Hispanic roots.
My son said there was a big buffet that was well worth waiting in line to experience. My d-i-l's family members were through the line and seated together at a large table, thoroughly enjoying each others' company. Since they don't live very close to each other, I'm sure the reconnecting was a lot of fun. Kayla's mom was at the table with her family, and her dad was still in line when Kayla came away from the buffet with a full plate in her hand then looked around the room. Her dad said that she looked at the family group and smiled, but then she saw her... she saw Rosa with her father, mother, and younger sibling, sitting alone at another table. Kayla's dad watched as a multitude of thoughts dashed through his daughter's mind, and the lump in his throat grew when he saw her move away from the laughter of her own family to sit with the isolated little family; he couldn't wait to join her.
This was not an event that was high on my son's priority list; he went to please his wife and daughter. But even as he thought of what he could have been doing (sleeping) at home, he reflected on how special it was to have that moment of magic when he saw his daughter choose kindness over her own possible pleasure. He was so glad he didn't miss it.
Wednesday, June 29, 2011
Just before we left my house, I handed each of the kids a book. Colton looked at me and wanted to know why I was giving him a book. I told him it was summer reading time. Kayla immediately piped up, remembering our book club discussions from last year. She explained to Colton that he would read the book and let me know when he was finished. Then the two of us would go to lunch and talk about his book. He looked at the book, looked up at me and said, "This is a chapter book Grandma." (He just finished first grade) I told him that he was right but I thought he could read it. He glanced at a few pages and agreed, then responded, "I'm going to read this in the car so I can go to lunch with you right away!" I laughed... I know summer is all about activity with this boy so if he reads a few books, I will declare myself the victor! Long live summer reading!
Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Then last night the hubby decided to move his desk from the home office (which he doesn't use nearly as much these days) to his school office. We're getting ready to have company and need a bit more bedroom space. I am actually quite excited about the change because it means my kids and grandkids will be able to have a comfortable space at our house this Christmas. They are coming for six weeks! That will be so much fun! It's a long way down the road yet so I haven't allowed myself to go there. But it's always in the back of my mind. Family makes it all worthwhile.
Saturday, June 25, 2011
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
My brother owns a condo in downtown Seattle only ten minutes or so from SPU, home of our two-day conference. No one has used his condo in more than a month so he graciously agreed to let us stay there. We drove up Sunday afternoon, avoiding a lot of heavy traffic, and settled in for a relaxing afternoon, wandering the city on foot and thoroughly enjoying Zeek's Pizza.
Monday we drove the few minutes to the university and stay put until four in the afternoon. We called some friends who live in Edmonds, met them for dinner that evening, then headed back to the condo and rested well before our last conference session on Tuesday. Each day, a catered lunch was provided, and it was sooooooo good! Tuesday we knew we couldn't each much dinner after our pasta lunch so checked out a Seattle magazine and found a Caribbean restaurant that specialized in Cuban pork delicacies. After enjoying the early evening at the Ballard Locks, we went to The Paseo and shared a delicious grilled pork, green salad, rice and black bean platter! This tiny space was hopping! Seating was limited to six tiny tables and we were fortunate to snag one of the last vacancies. Don't offer these guys a credit card or check; they're strictly a cash only establishment. This place gave new definition to the proverbial hole-in-a-wall restaurant! And it was wonderful!
Wednesday morning we packed up, left the condo, and headed downtown, specifically to Pike's Place Market and my all-time favorite kitchen store, Sur La Table. I also wandered into a Made in Washington store and bought Goodnight Seattle, a sweet book that I will read to my granddaughter via iChat and then ship to France to add to her expanding library. After our traditional trip to Ivar's on Pier 54, we headed home and enjoyed a relaxing afternoon and evening. Well, I did... the hubby mowed the lawn, weeded, and accomplished several other outdoor jobs. Tomorrow he will go into the office and I will tackle the laundry and then babysit two of our three adorables here in town. The third is headed to Seattle with her mom for a wedding rehearsal. She's going to be the flower girl in a cousin's wedding. And she will do it perfectly!
Such a great way to participate in a conference and spend our first week out of school together!
Thursday, June 16, 2011
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
Part of the success yesterday was finally getting people to see that we are two schools in one, that junior high is simply not the same as the elementary grades, and that we need to acknowledge this and allow for some changes. One of the biggest disconnects for us has been the Grandparents Day celebration. I'm all for grandparents but once students hit junior high, this kind of event is not always successful. While elementary classes have three grandparents for every student, our classes had one or two sets of grandparents for the entire class. It's been like that for years and making this event anything but a boring embarrassment has been a huge challenge for us. This coming year, junior high will opt out of the day and have a normal day of classes. This is so much better for us.
Another issue, a much bigger one, has been the tardy policy, rather, the enforcement of the tardy policy. Our policy is quite strict and consequences are clearly spelled out but when those consequences are not delivered, students receive the wrong message. Yesterday we requested the authority to deliver the consequences ourselves, and it is going to happen. Little by little, we are shaping our part of the school.
I have to say, part of what we do comes from my experience at QCS. When I taught there, we had a principal for the school and administrative assistants for each department within the school. I had that responsibility for the middle school. We had our own staff meetings, dealt with discipline issues, curriculum issues, and made recommendations to the administration that often resulted in change. Teachers had a voice - or at least we believed we had a voice. And that's what happened in staff meeting yesterday. Teachers spoke, were heard, and witnessed change. It was a good thing!
Sunday, June 12, 2011
Saturday, June 11, 2011
Thursday, June 09, 2011
The afternoon was far more successful. It was party-time! Students brought cookies, chips, sodas, fruit, veggies, cupcakes, and Rice Krispie treats! I picked up the DVD Tangled from the local Red Box. I love Red Box... good grief, a new movie for a buck! What's not to like! Usually I don't have too many kids show up in my room for the movie but this year, I had a roomful! It was hilarious listening to them sing along with the characters! The last period of the day, the PE teacher took the students for some outside games so we could clean up the mess in our classrooms. I got everything off my walls and windows and put away. Once I clean off my desk, I'll be ready to check out! Productivity!
On the way home this evening, I passed kids playing outside in shorts and tank tops. It was 62*. I thought about where I used to live in the islands. If the temperature ever plummeted that low, people would wear sweaters and hats and whatever else they could find to get warm. Sun and 62 degrees equals summer weather in the Pacific Northwest!
Wednesday, June 08, 2011
Sunday, June 05, 2011
There are people who want to say that a Christian high school doesn't measure up academically. I know that's not the case! One of the great faculty members that makes such a difference in these kids lives is Dr. Norm Nielsen. Recently he's been chosen as the top chemistry high school teacher in the NW region. This is the link to the article but you do have to scroll past the grads and the summer school stuff. He is an amazing guy and our grads tell us that college biology, chemistry, and physics are smooth sailing for them. They've already had the tough stuff with Norm!
The theme for the high school is Raising the Bar. My hubby is the principal and is committed to academic excellence. It was important to him as a student and it's even more important to him now. I could tell he was happy tonight with all the national and state awards our students were receiving. It is truly well worth the effort.
Saturday, June 04, 2011
Friday, June 03, 2011
Today I removed several things from my classroom walls, mostly schedules for sports, electives, enrichment, and such. I also took down student work and gave it to them. It's always interesting to see which students toss their work and which save it. Nearly all my only children save their work. And yes, I have several onlies in this class. That explains a lot of the conflict these students experience. They are simply used to getting their own way.
So... the sun is shining and I have the afternoon to look forward to. I'm done with most of my work! What joy!