Sunday, June 14, 2015

My Teaching Quirk!

I'm a bit of an actress when I'm teaching. My classroom is my stage, and my students are both my audience and my fellow players.

Anything to Keep My Kids Interested!
One thing my students will tell you about me is that I like to do voices. They love read aloud time in my room, because I really get into character. One time I was reading from the novel Hatchet. I got to the part where the boy wakes screaming for his mother, which I did, quite loudly and urgently. Not only did my kids stay on the edge of their sets, but a parent heard me from outside and came rushing into the room to see what was the matter!

Seeing me get enthusiastic about stories helps my students get involved, too. It's so much more fun to act out what we're reading, and it aids in comprehension, too!

What about you? What's your teaching quirk? I'd love to hear about it! Please leave a comment about it below. :)

Next, check out the link up at I Heart Grade 3.

Weekly Linkup
Thanks for visiting! "See" you next time!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Summer Linky Party: My Accomplishment

Oops! I’m late to the party! As part of I Heart Grade 3’s summer linky party, many bloggers this week are writing about an accomplishment of which they are proud.

Summer Linky Party

When my children were toddlers, I desperately needed to increase my income. I was divorced, and my ex-husband refused to pay his court-ordered child support. Since he was a self-employed contractor, my lawyer told me it was pointless to go after him for the back support. I needed another way to raise the money.

Since my pay rate would increase by nearly $10,000 a year if I earned my Master’s Degree, I decided that I needed to go back to school. I also desired to gain more knowledge in reading instruction, so I decided to earn my Master’s Degree in Education, with a Reading Emphasis. This degree came with the added distinction of earning a Reading Specialist Credential at the same time as the Master’s Degree.

Thankfully, my Mom helped us out with childcare while I worked during the day and went to school at night. After a year-and-a-half I earned my new degrees, making it possible for me to support my family while I was working in California.

Since then, I have needed the money periodically to protect my children and myself from my ex–husband in court. (He demanded spousal support from me, and used my children to try to get support for himself and his girlfriend.) Although we struggle financially now, at least we are safe from him, as I now have sole custody, and we live thousands of miles away from the two of them.

I know God has a plan for us. As long as I know what He wants me to do, I will work as hard as I can to follow the path He sets.

Monday, June 1, 2015

June Currently 2015

It's time to tell you what I'm doing Currently!

Listening: to Grand Canyon Suite by Grofe. This is one of my favorite works of music of all time. I was fortunate to have a wonderful high school language arts teacher by the name of Mr. Klevos. He taught us to appreciate great works of literature, art, and music from around the world.

During an after school club held in his room he would turn off the lights and have us close our eyes to “see” the story within the music. I still remember visualizing the sun rising over the rim of the canyon, the horse clip-clopping along, and the thunderstorm lighting up the sky.

The influence of this music, and the teacher who shared it with us, are some of the reasons I became a Humanities major in college.

Loving: the chicken soup with dumplings I made in the crockpot yesterday. I used a standard chicken soup recipe with additional spices, then added two cans of Campbell’s Herbed Cream of Chicken Soup once the soup was almost ready. Finally, I created dumplings using the recipe on the side of the Bisquick box, except that I added half a large chopped onion and a lot of poultry spice to the mix before adding it to the top of the soup. It smells wonderful and tastes absolutely delicious!

Chicken Soup with Dumplings, Plus a Glass of Heavily Iced/Watered Down Cranberry Pomegranate Juice

Thinking: about an interview I have this week to work at an open school. (Are you looking for a new job, too? For my series of interview tips, click here.) I really don’t think I’ll get this particular job, since I don’t have any training in that type of teaching environment, but I am curious to see the school and learn more about how it works.

What Does Self-Directed Learning Look Like in a Classroom?

From my online research it appears that open schools emphasize student autonomy and self-directed learning, with the teacher acting as a facilitator. It sounds interesting, and I can’t wait to see it in action!

My own district is already out for the summer, but of you are still in session, you might want to check out a fun little freebie I have posted here. 

Wanting: to lose some weight and get in better shape. Realistically, it’s not happening. Although I lost a few pounds due to my recent bout of stomach flu, I’m a stress eater, and I love my comfort foods!

Dessert, Anyone?

Needing: to get my daughter up so she can take a shower before her doctor’s appointment. Wish me luck, as it’s not fun to wake a teenager on summer vacation!

Wake Up a Sleeping Teenager at Your Own Peril!
Summer Lovin': local trips to Dollywood and Splash Country. I LOVE roller coasters, and Wild Eagle is so fun!

I also want to take my teenagers to Splash Country, which is Dollywood’s water park. We haven’t been there yet, but I want to change that this summer.

Finally, I hope to travel to Murfreesboro, TN on July 28-29 to help Michele Martin-Luck with a display booth representing/featuring a group of Teachers Pay Teachers authors-sellers. Michele travels all around the country setting up TpT booths at educational conferences. I participate through her (and her husband, Steve), but this conference will be close enough for me to visit. (I hope!)

Conferences with Michele Martin-Luck

Thank you for reading my June Currently! Head over to Farley’s linkup at Oh Boy Fourth Grade to read more posts by some of your favorite teacher-authors. Please consider donating to a worthy cause while you're there!

Linkup Here

Before you go, take a look at my sidebar for other topics that might interest you. Please consider following me on Bloglovin’, Instagram, and TpT, too! 

“See” you next time!

Why Did I Start Blogging?

Why Did I Start Blogging? I never intended to blog. Of course, I never intended to be on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or any other social media, for that matter. As a quiet, shy, reserved person (except in front of my students!) I had no wish to reveal myself to strangers. Besides, who would care about what I wrote on a blog? Who would read it? Nope, there was no way I was going to put myself out there.

Social Media

It’s funny how life has a way of forcing you out of your comfort zone, though. When I hosted a giveaway on my Facebook page I asked for other sellers to donate, which many of them did. Unfortunately, I did not realize that they were expecting the giveaway to be hosted on my blog, which I did not have!

Where's Your Blog?

Not wanting to disappoint more than 50 other sellers, I quickly started my own blog, in the midst of my giveaway. What a crazy, hectic couple of weeks that was!

When the giveaway was over, I was left with this little blog. I didn’t know what to do with it (and I still wonder about it!), but I am trying to find my way, kind of like life, I guess.

While I have been typing this we finally got the rain we've been promised for the last month! Yeah! Here's a little video of Simon's Cat in the rain to make you smile, too!

What about you? Do you have a blog? Would you like to share why you started it? 
Weekly Blogging Topics
If so, head on over to Miss Monica’s blog at I Heart Grade3 to link up your own blog, or just to read through some of the other posts. Don’t forget to leave a comment here first, please! I puffy heart comments! Thanks!

 “See” you next time!
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