Thursday, August 21, 2008

Easel Envy

Someone has the best easel in the whole world. It is the luxury car of easels, complete with magnets to hold big book pages, drawers for books, and little dishes for markers. The best part: the whole thing is magnetic. You heard me, the whole easel - frame and white board - are magnetic. I could make out with the easel right now I love it so much.

I have been a non-classroom teacher for a little over a month. Today, while stroking such a piece of art, I wished I was the main lady in the classroom once again.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Your Thoughts Needed

Yes I am in class. Yes the instructor is holding a discussion with the rest of the class. Yes I am off task. Almost. I am reading The Atlantic Monthly article about technology:

I am not finished with the article, but my need to share is greater then my need to understand. My ideas keep whizzing from classroom ramifications to my own reading process to standards.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Duh! Or Am I Missing Something?

Quotes from fifth grade writing samples:
  • "It was the best first time camping trip I've ever had."
  • "He is the best brother I have ever had plus my other brother."
  • "Some day we'll be better than best friends."
Are these students writing something so deep that I'm not getting them?

Saturday, June 7, 2008

7 Days and Counting.

The sick part of me - the part of me that has a viral rash spreading to her shoulders - cannot wait for the school year to be over. I am afraid that if I spend another month in my petri dish classroom that I will have a double ear infection, pink eye, and whooping cough. I wash my hands. I don't give hugs. I drink plenty of fluids. So how did I end up using about a months worth of sick days? I am still baffled by my weakened immune system, but need to take a nap to process so much thinking.

After my nap, if I took the time to process, I would probably discover something amazing like "But the students need to wash their hands too!" But instead, I will be reading articles, writing papers, grading tests, avoiding bubbling, sulking (re: rash and v-neck dress that will not debut tonight), and writing some more. Maybe, just maybe, the viral rash is less student related and more stress related.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Girly or Not?

These are the two texts one of my students had available for when she finished her state science test. Who knew the same child would be reading both of them at the same time? And, enjoying them both A LOT!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Testosterone Thursday

I teach elementary school. I don't expect to spend a lot of time with men during my workday. I don't see that as good or bad, just an observation of the realities.

Today, however, I found just the opposite to be true. By the end of the day I realized four different male teachers had been in my classroom working with students.

  1. A university student who is observing one particular child for a case study as he works towards his teaching license.
  2. A science graduate student who works with our school through an NSF fellowship.
  3. A central office resource teacher.
  4. Our technology specialist.
And the intern who has been working with us all semester was subbing in kindergarten today - his presence would have raised us to five. Astounding.

If you are interested in the perspectives of men in elementary school, check out this fun blog.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Quotes from 5th Graders

These are from a young man who always makes me smile:
  • I'm trying to find a loophole in this project.
  • You really like to inflict pain on children, don't you?
  • It was highly amusing to watch you both try that. (In response to 2 teachers bowling.)
  • You mean it's not an invitation, it's an obligation. (I'll be using this one in the future.)
During an explanation from the science graduate student who works with our class:
Student: "You use lots of big words."
Science grad student: "What do you want me to explain more?"
Student: "I don't know, you lost me at hello."

Up for a vacation?

Quotes from tourist advertisements for volcanoes:

  • lava lamps
  • free marshmallows
  • hot dog roasting
  • stadium for lava monster wrestling
  • 5 eruptions every 24 hours
  • we also have a church for funerals
  • no souvenirs cause that's just wasting money before you die
  • please say goodbye to loved ones before coming
  • will be the last sight you'll ever see
  • might want to write your will before coming
Lights! Lava! Explosions! Rocks and minerals forming everywhere! But, don't make it angry or else! You have to run for your lives!!!

Monday, March 31, 2008

Teacher Hallway Conversation

First Year Teacher: I'm not sure how to help them see this concept beyond the textbook.

Experienced Teacher: How about in this artwork they have on display in the hallway? The perspective is there and it's their own work.

FYT: Of course. Perfect. Thanks for the random math consultation.

(I love teaching in a school that can have 'random math consultations' happening in the hallway.)

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

From the Point of View of a 5th Grader

We spent a lot of today analyzing various artwork, considering the lines, colors, and shapes, thinking about the emotions conveyed in a painting or sculpture. The discussion was wonderful. Until the end...

Looking at this painting, Niagara Falls from the American Side, William James Bennett after John Robert Murray, published 1840, a fifth grader said, "It looks like a picture we could have taken in the 1970s or 1980s."

I had no response.