"Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will spend its whole life believing it is stupid."
- Albert Einstein

Friday, 6 September 2013

Oh blog, how I have neglected thee...

I haven't written since MAY. If anyone is reading this, I am sorry!  So many things to say I don't even know where to begin... I guess we should start at the end? ;)

Let me take you back to June 2013....

Last year ended with a bang for us in PreK- 1. Our whale watching trip was a tremendous success, filling an entire boat with family, friends, community members and a whole lot of fun! We saw porpoises, humpback whales, eagles, and to top it off we had a beautiful day to do it! Our kids amaze me every day; being on the water was no exception. We witnessed a lot of really great things that day: community involvement, leaders stepping up, adults demonstrating pure joy as if it was their first grade trip, and so much more. The energy on that boat was indescribable. This was by far one of my favourite days.

To continue the end of our year we had our first Kindergarten Graduation. Now, I may be a bit bias but they were hands down the cutest graduating class! I couldn't have been more proud giving out their awards. Giving out awards at our end of the year assembly was actually a lot harder than I was prepared for. Although we work in a small school, and my Grade 1's were moving across the hall to Grade 2, I was loosing a big part of me. I'm not sure if its because my family is in Ontario, but these kids became my family (as well as they staff). I wasn't ready to give them up. They are a large part of why I offered to teach the 1s and 2s in a new ReadWell Spelling and Composition program our school is starting this year! I can't wait to work with them again! I also had a very proud moment yesterday when the "grade 2s" (our old 1's) were being discussed in the staff room. They have been doing extremely well, keeping up with the grade 4's AND being the only ones to use their manners! GOOD JOB GUYS! I am SO proud of you all!! I'm really happy to hear that some have really come into their own over this summer, really pushing themselves this first week of school. Now for some pictures... 

Left: WE ARE THE FUTURE. LOVE IT. Our class and their wonderful, fabulous parents with Miss D's sign that was made by her class for Idle No More!

Bottom Left: Some highlights from K Graduation/End of the Year Assembly! I am a lucky teacher to have such thoughtful parents!

Bottom Right: Besties on their K Grad!


Speaking of summer... I might get some heat for this but... IT WAS SO LONG. I missed the kids! I was bored! I was stuck in my parents house in Ontario without a car (haha)! Don't get me wrong... I had a fantastic time visiting my friends and family, laying by the pool, reading for fun, going to the beach,  all the weddings, wedding showers, baby showers, etc.... but two months of no routine is a long time. Note to self: Next summer - ENGLAND or a MASSIVE TRIP! Kenya? 

Highlight of my summer: Witnessing my two best friends promise to spend the rest of their lives together. It was a fantastic day and I was honoured to be a part of it.

Needless to say I am happy to be back at work! Before summer was even over we were fortunate enough to participate in ReadWell training by none other than the guru herself, Marilyn Sprick! She is FANTASTIC! There were SO MANY "uh-hu" moments where everything just clicked and finally made sense! I understand the program fully now and feel confident that I can do this program with fidelity. I actually feel guilty because, if I'm being honest here, there were so many things I wasn't fully doing last year, I feel the kids missed out a lot. Luckily for me, I get those kids for another year ;)  I LOVE conferences! I love networking with new teachers, and hearing from experienced pro's. Its so powerful to have a room full of the same vision, passion and drive.

Anyway, back to the kiddos! This year our classroom is VERY different! We have 10 Grade 1's, 3 K's and 7 PRE-K's starting next week. Our classroom theme is PASSPORT TO LEARNING: Around the World or "The Ultimate Class Field-trip"  :) So far we have taken a trip in a hot air balloon (see pics), had a Welcome Back BBQ, and been working VERY hard on rules and routines. This year we also started ReadWell on Wednesday, September 4, 2013. THE SECOND DAY OF SCHOOL. This year is already looking so much better than last!

Back to school! Our bulletin board outside our room! 

Our FLOWER POWER clock :) 

Two MUST HAVES! Self-control MAGIC bubbles (Watch this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XCe4AJmKE40 - its AMAZING) and Magic Healing Lotion Potion (AKA - cucumber hand lotion from the Dollar store) -  If a student has an "owie" they can go to my desk and put a little bit of the lotion potion on and it magically heals them. The best part, you ask? They do it quietly without telling a teacher. :)

My new "chair" - a stability ball... the kids love it, I love it... its a win-win! 

Our "hot air balloon" - Note to self: Helium balloons DO NOT LAST. Get them at the very last moment possible! 

Cute :)

Our little explorers! 

The Dollar Store didn't have enough explorer hats, so the PREKs got Cowboy Hats that say "EXPLORER" on them ... worked like a charm! 

Miss C ready to fly away! 

On a personal note, I've decided its time to put myself first (or at least tied with my job). I've always worried about other things (i.e. school, school, school, work), people or silly non-important things and made that a priority. Well, no more my friend! Don't get me wrong, I still love everyone very much I just want to focus on me. I've been eating better, working out a lot and I must say I have a LOT more energy, and I've been sleeping better. Its a new me, and I'm loving it :) It makes handling the kids easier too. Working on myself also means writing in this blog more often - another goal of the year. Its therapeutic for me to write it down, plus it will help me in the long run I'm sure (i.e. remembering good ideas, what worked, what didn't). 

That all said, it's bed time for this tired teacher... is it just me or is the first week of school a long one? Even on a revised schedule I'm ready for the weekend! Who's with me? 

All my Love, 

Miss C