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Thursday, May 26, 2011

A good fibro link

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Common Core Standards

In college we had to eat, breath, and live Kentucky Core Content. This was the basis for life. Well, ok, not life but everything we had to do in our education classes. I used to dream of KCC. It was not fun. At one point I thought I would know it word for word. I knew how cite it in lesson plans like a pro. Now, they have changed it again. Apparently KY has adopted the National Core Content. I'd like to go to an interview and make them think I knew this backwards and forwards but the fact is...I've not got to have one Earthly training. Back to cramming and dreaming again. Just like in college.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

What I learned in 5th grade...

Today I realized that every time I discuss anything of any significance that happened in my childhood I refer more to the grade I was in than to how old I was. "Oh yes, I remember that. I was in 'so and so' grade." Not sure if anyone else does that or not. A couple of things crossed my mind today and I thought to myself: "I was in fifth grade when that happened." So of course I go strolling down memory lane.

The year was 1985. Back then we started school about the third week of August. At the beginning of August the Lord saved my soul and the day after I was baptized I got braces. There was a horrible car wreck that killed an elderly lady who was a neighbor to my sister. How do I remember that? I am not sure. I was excited for school to start because my teacher was a young lady that graduated with my brother. She was very sweet and liked hugs. I think it may have been her first year of teaching. Two of my closest friends were in the same room. Of course being such a tiny school I already knew all my classmates. 

I learned a lot my fifth grade year, more so about life than academics but I learned several new things in that area too. In October only a few short weeks before my brother was to move back home from the Air Force my grandfather had a massive heart attack. He survived but it was very serious. I was afraid I would not have him by Christmas. I really didn't realize how much this was affecting me until my mom met with my teacher. The next day of school she sat with me and ask me about my grandfather. My initial thought was, "Why does she care she is a teacher?" That is when I really realized that teachers were people too. She had grandparents, parents, and siblings. She was a real person. I had always had awesome teachers that were very caring but personalization never occurred to me to mind.

That fall the Titanic had been "rediscovered" by and was being explored by a man who had invented some robotic machines that could navigate through the wreckage. The St. Louis Cardinals were in the series again. This thrilled me to no end. That same fall I started realizing how different things were becoming on all levels. I was not as shy as I used to be for one thing. My feelings were changing about different things. I was on the road to adulthood and I had no idea what was happening. Things were getting a little confusing. Fortunately at this time in my life I started realizing what true friendship was. Friends were not just people you sat beside at lunch and talked to or played with at recess. Bethany and I started hanging out more and more. She wasn't even in my class. We started having sleep overs, something I had never really done before nor did I want to do. By the end of my fifth grade year things were getting very scary. I was going to have to go to Middle School and there would be a bunch of kids I did not know unlike my cozy little little elementary classrooms I would have to change classes, have different teachers all day, and go my locker when I was supposed to. On top of all that my sister was getting married before school was even out. I came to school crying. This was a lot for one little girl to take in and what happened? There was my caring teacher with her arms out and my real friends around me trying to make me feel better. Did I learn something besides life lessons that year? Of course!

We had reading worksheets with a few paragraphs and questions at the end to assess comprehension. That year I learned that Mt. McKinnley is the highest mountain in the United States and it is located in Alaska. I learned that Bill Cosby had a troubled childhood but he prevailed (the Cosby Show was popular that year so that interested me).  I also learned that there was a dreadful disease that doctors did not know much about called AIDS. An actor had already died from it and a little boy named Ryan White had this. He was not allowed to go to school and this stirred national attention. We discussed this as a class. We also talked about a little boy named Adam Walsh who was abducted from a New York mall and killed. Our teacher told us things we could do to stay safe from strangers. We even did a finger print kit. In social studies we learned how our country started and with the help from my teacher's husband I learned that Hooker was the name of a general and the way that prostitutes got the name "hookers" was because of that guy. I learned that I had a hard time with converting measurements and cheating was not the answer. Science was a big deal. Though nothing pops in my mind about it right now if the right thing is mentioned I'll say: "Oh yes, I learned about that in the fifth grade." I could also ask my very best friend if she remembers, after all she was in my fifth grade class.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Fate is a wonderful thing

My eight grade year, 1989, I had a boyfriend that was a Jr in high school. I was one of the older kids and my class and he was one of the younger so the age thing was barely two years. I was allowed to see him every two weeks during that short lived relationship. He was allowed to go to the 8th grade dance with me. I was sure I was in love. When the time came for his prom we both agreed that my parents would never agree to let me go as young as I was, so he took someone from his church. It was a set up of some sort so she could meet her boyfriend or something. She looked like a model, I did not, but I trusted him with her. She was a good person. I didn't think about it much. Most times like that I would pout and stew for quite sometime. The day of the prom I hung out at my sister's beauty shop and went home with her. For some reason her husband decided to ride around and we came to the lake and drove down to Site 1. It was cool and rainy that day. My sister and I stayed in the truck and watched coons play in the garbage cans while my brother-in-law looked around. We talked about me not going to the prom and how I felt about the situation. Still didn't care...even as much as I wanted to be with my "true love." A couple of weeks after the prom my mom told me I could have went. I was a little confused but still not bothered and had no regrets for not pushing the issue. 

Three years later I met Chris. It was a blind date. I was hearing he was a little on the "wild side." I wanted to have some fun, but that was not my idea of fun. He had heard I was a good girl and his cousins I went to school with compared me to Mother Teresa. That is just hilarious. I was far from perfect but I knew what I wanted. As I was about to tell him I didn't think we should hang out because I didn't agree with his lifestyle he told me it was time for him to put all that behind him, he knew it was wrong and he was done with that life. Wow. I gave him the benefit of the doubt and kept seeing him. Of course I was already falling head over heels for him. He told be about some of the stupid things he had done. One of those times was his Sr. Prom...in1989. Had I have seen him that night I would have probably never thought about going out with him at all. I probably met him on the road that evening while I was riding around with my sister and her husband. Actually during the course of that evening I had remember another time I was with them and had crossed the dam. We went to "Ann's Beauty Shop" that day. We also went to someone's house named Jannie Bell. As we were walking in this meany looking boy with blond hair and brown eyes wearing a tank top ran up to me and assured me he could start a fire with the rocks he had in his hand. Then there was a few moments of the "Unh uh" "Uh huh" game. I was convinced that was the meanest, most stupid boy in the world. I must have said a few negative things about him, well as negative as a five-year-old can get. My brother-in-law teased me about that boy for months nonstop. He still was teasing me about that boy when I started dating him eleven years later...To this day I still tell that mean little boy that there is no way he could have ever started a fire with those rocks. After being together for 20 years, he knows not to argue with me about it anymore. He just rolls his eyes.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

The Titanic: Just a little piece of history between my Mammaw and me

I was four weeks old when Mama went back to work. She left me in the care of my Mammaw Elmore and my Papaw retired when I was one year. Every work day from 5:30 a.m until 4:00 p.m. until I went to school I was at my Mammaw's and Papaw's house. I learned how people lived without t.v. through no intentions of my own. The youngest child of four and a child of technology I was rarely bored. During the summer I stayed outside. I have a vague memory of them letting me sit on a  pillow cushion and playing in the dirt with a spade Daddy had made while they gardened. When I was older I would dig and attempt to dissect worms, ride my bike, and use my incredible imagination I must have inherited from my Mammaw. Every afternoon they read the paper, every afternoon she cooked fried potatoes in lard, horticulture beans, and cornbread. In the summer there would often be green onions and other goodies from one of their monstrous gardens. There I learned about life, how to treat people, stories from the Bible, and so much more.

When the other grandkids (mostly grown and ready to start families by the time I was born) were younger my Mammaw bought a chalkboard. At the top the ABCs were painted in print and in cursive, both upper and lower case letters. It was there where my passion for education started. My Mammaw loved history and algebra. I got the history gene, definitely not the algebra one. During breaks from the garden and in the winter time as she sowed on her quilt pieces we would play school. Of course I was always the teacher. It was this manner I learned to count, write, and gained a massive amount of history lessons. One of my favorite historical stories she told was of the Titantic. She was not even two years old when this monumental catastrophe happened. I have often wondered how quick they got the news as there were no regular newspapers, t.v.s, and very few telephones. This is one of the many stories I'd have her to repeat often. "The only reason that ship sank is because people said 'Not even God could sink it.'" She always added that part. She told of a little boy who knew he was doomed to perish in the icy waters below climbing the mast of the ship and singing a hymn. This was probably just one of the many legends passed down with Titanic tales but her point was made clearly. This young man seemed to be a born again Christian and knew where he was going. He sang to comfort all those whose fate had come before them. She said he was a poor boy and most of the passengers on the ship were rich and didn't care about what happened to the few poor people that was on that ship. 

Around 1985 the wreckage was relocated and talks of using modern equipment to bring up the ship were abound. That was usually the main story on the news. For some reason I didn't talk to her or don't remember talking about that with her. I guess I thought I'd know her answer, the same as mine. Leave it be and let is stay at the bottom of the sea as a reminder that God should not be tested. Now they have memorabilia and recreations of the Titanic that "travels" around our great nation but as far as I am concerned, as horrid as a tragedy it was, it was a great lesson in life.   

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Common Core: Now It Gets Interesting

Common Core: Now It Gets Interesting

Act like a lady?

I hated wearing dresses as a child. My mom, sister, grandmother, or someone was always whispering to me: "You need to sit like a lady so no one will see your panties." GRRRR! I more than likely did not pick out that dress and I certainly did not want to act like a lady. I wanted to do back bends, turn flips, and climb trees. By the time I got in middle school those words echoed and I did not mind to sit like a lady. My mom, sisters, grandmothers, aunts, etc. also taught me that I should ACT like a lady for those who did not act like ladies had ugly reputations and they were not good girls. I wanted to be a good girl that had good friends and eventually good boyfriends. I thought of myself as a rebel in some ways but acting like a lady was important to me because if reflected on my church and family, my friends and my school, my get the point. Now when you tell a teenage girl that they look at you like you just took a stupid pill and have a somewhat dumbfounded look on their face like they have never heard such a saying and they don't know what you are talking about. They do not understand why you should not sit in a guys lap in the middle of class or on top of the desk with their legs spread. Is society so bad that we have stopped teaching kids appropriateness? Gee whiz. They make out in parking lots, flip each other off, and scream obscenities in public without blinking an eye or having any awareness as to who may be around. Boys and girls. Was I a total and complete angel? No, not by far. I made my share of mistakes and when I did slip up and say or do something I wasn't supposed to I knew it because I was taught. I sure did regret doing it too. 

Until next time: Act like a lady.

Stop the summer slide for elementary age kids

Repetitiveness is very important for every one especially kids. Students learn better by repeating even if it is done in different fashions. Do not let the summer slide affect your children. That does not mean you have to drill them several hours each day. By simply reminding your child about something he/she learned during the last school year will help greatly. Take advantage of those "cool down" times when you come in from playing or right before you go to bed to read books and words, spell, and do simple math facts. Encourage them to watch an educational video or rainy days or help them look up something that is interests them. Expose them to new things by visiting a museum (they are generally free) or take to them to a free concert. Go on a picnic and talk about different food groups or identify things  that are around you such as types of trees, flowers, or grass. Look for "Indian Beads" (fossilized plants) and oddly shaped rocks. Teaching and learning does not have to be a chore. Have fun. Get out and soak up some sun for Vitamin D and jump into a large pool of H20. Memories will be made on several levels.

If you would like extra help stopping the summer slide please contact me! I will continue to do tutoring this summer. I charge $10 per hourly sessions in my home.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Teacher-paraprofessional relationships

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Printable Certificates, Certificate Templates, Free Award Certificates, Blank Awards to Print, Certificate Templates for Word

Printable Certificates, Certificate Templates, Free Award Certificates, Blank Awards to Print, Certificate Templates for Word

Awesome Clipart for Educators!

Awesome Clipart for Educators!

Education Oasis - Teaching Resources for Educators

Education Oasis - Teaching Resources for Educators

Freeology - Free School Stuff

Freeology - Free School Stuff

I LOVE graphic organizers. This site has that and much more!

Search - An Educational Resource Site for Teachers and Kids

Search - An Educational Resource Site for Teachers and Kids Worksheets, crafts, lessonplans, printables, flashcards, games and other free resources for kindergarten, primary / elementary school teachers and esl learners Worksheets, crafts, lessonplans, printables, flashcards, games and other free resources for kindergarten, primary / elementary school teachers and esl learners