Sunday, September 14, 2014

Nightly Walk

September 14, 2014

On our nightly walk tonight we stopped into Walmart. I spotted in one of the middle aisles a stack of boxes containing camouflage reclining chairs. (Aside: a Box o' Recliner? Really?) Me, to Hubby: "Who buys a camouflage recliner? What need do you have to hide in the living room? 'Hey look at Elmer--he appears to just be floatin' in the middle of the room in front a' the t.v. set!'"

Also, in a nearby aisle, Hubby says, "Look over there-do they have hookers in Walmart now?" Me: "You can pretty much get everything at Walmart these days."

Walmart always provides fun topics of conversation...

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

We're All A Little Mad Here...

September 9, 2014

Nicholas' new acquisition.  He's really bummed that dress code won't allow him to wear it to school, but I'm sure he'll find other places to sport his style.  I love that he's got his own thing goin' on!


Thursday, September 4, 2014

Senior Pictures, Round One

September 4, 2014

I can hardly believe that we had our appointment for Nicholas' senior pictures today.  We are planning on doing a full sitting at a later date, when I do a photo shoot with Nicholas, Taylor, and Devin, but today we went to Larson Brothers Photography to get the shots we'll have to choose from to go in the senior yearbook.  Obviously, I wasn't allowed to take pictures inside the photography studio, but Nicholas was game to let me catch a few extra shots when we got home.  Just like when I took Bree to get her senior photos, there was something surreal and exciting about seeing Nicholas taking his picture in a graduation cap and gown.  Even though we're only in September, the end of the tunnel is going to come in the blink of an eye.





Wednesday, August 27, 2014

These Are The Days

August 27, 2014

Today's the kind of day I'd like to mentally file away for future use, perhaps sometime in early December when fatigue and senioritis have taken hold in my students and the over-scheduled stress takes its toll on the kiddos. Today, with the exception of a minor cell phone conversation we needed to have in one class, every one of my classes was invested, engaged, and actively participating in the conversation and practice of how and why we read. I loved the things the kids were saying and the way they were thinking. These are the days that see me through the tougher days. Lovin' this week. Lovin' this start to my year!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Reading Identity

August 26, 2014

I'm often amazed at how many of my students see themselves as 'non-readers'.  Then we get to talking and sharing all of the different kinds of reading we all do in our everyday lives--traditional and non-traditional--and they share ALL KINDS of things they read.  Novels, sure, but also cookbooks and gaming magazines and baseball stats and computer code and music notes and movies and even body language, just to name a few.  My job is to teach my students to think through processing the written word, but often they haven't seen that their skill sets in other kinds of reading--sometimes quite deep and intuitive and very thoughtful--can translate into application to the written word.  It's pretty cool when students feel validated in their own areas of expertise and can begin to see the transfer potential.  It's my goal to help all of my kids see themselves as readers, because ultimately what I mean when I say that is that I want them to recognize themselves as thinkers.  This week, we begin that journey together.

Monday, August 25, 2014

First Day Pics

August 25, 2014

It's getting harder to get my kids to humor me and let me take 'First Day' pictures, but I managed it!  I even got Bree to send me a picture of her first day of her senior year of college (since I couldn't be there), and Danielle took a picture of my first day of my 25th year as well.  Since the kids have to have their experiences documented, I might as well too.  Senior year, senior year, and sophomore year--here they come!

 Danielle and the bestie, Megan.
 Duty bright and early the first week of school.  Me in my safety vest.

 Photobomb.
 Bree and the bestie Brandon--representing SDSU Ambassadors on the first day of school.


Nicholas and his girlfriend Treasa

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Year 25, Here I Come!

August 24, 2014

Bookshelves are stocked, copies are made, posters are up, lessons are planned, rosters are printed, and teacher is ready to open up the doors to welcome her students.  It's the beginning of my 25th year, and I still think it's the best job in the world.  Bring on the kids!  (Two sections of World Lit, one section of Expository Writing, and two sections of AP Lit.)


Saturday, August 23, 2014

The Calm Before the Storm

August 23, 2014

It's the last Saturday night before the kids show up in my classroom on Monday morning.  Dinner at home, swimming and then hot tub, and a quiet comedy movie to round out our night.  The calm before the storm...

Friday, August 22, 2014

Family Dinner Night

August 22, 2014

It's Friday night--the last Friday night before school starts up again.  As usual, we did Family Dinner Night.  It was my choice tonight, and I decided I was feeling hungry for Wingstop.  We're really loving that this place has opened up so close to our house.  Nicholas asked to invite his girlfriend Treassa to join us tonight, and it was a lot of fun having her along.  She was a good sport about our Family Dinner Night question tradition, and even offered up a question of her own for all of us to answer.  (My question to everyone, since it was my choice tonight, was "What will you do this school year that you didn't do last year that will make this a better year for you?"  My answer was that I was going to implement some of the strategies I learned about this summer at my workshop into my classes this year.)  We then invited Treassa to give us all a question, so she wanted to know what each of us considered our favorite memory.  It was a lot of fun to hear everyone's responses to that one!  After our dinner at Wingstop, we popped in next door for frozen yogurt for dessert.  Despite the goofy looks on their faces, we had a good time!




Thursday, August 21, 2014

Rah Rah!

August 21, 2014

Today we had our annual Rah Rah General Session to kick off the school year.  We gather every employee in the district to celebrate all of our accomplishments and generally get inspired to go out and help make a difference in the lives of the the kids who will walk in our doors this coming Monday morning.  I actually really like General Session.  In the past, Mom and I used to go together every year.  For the past several years, I've gone with my good friends Victory and Allison.  I seriously love these fantastic women, and I seriously love my school and my district!