Wednesday, September 29, 2010


Is it Wal-Mart or is it society? Whatever the answer is...people never cease to shock me.

I am walking along (minding my own business) and I see a lady pushing a cart with a baby carrier in it that is conveniently holding her purse. Interesting. Then, about eight feet behind her comes a little girl (maybe 7 or 8...I could be off just a little) carrying a baby who was probably a few months old. She smiled at me (I'm wondering if I knew her from church as she also slightly waved). I am sure she saw the shock on my face as my mouth dropped open. I don't know about you, but I don't think I would let a child that young carry a baby that young as she's walking around...

Then, after I picked up my cat food, I saw a little girl (maybe 4) run off to the bike section by herself. Wondering who she was inner teacher just had to come out. I asked her where her mom was or who she was with as I started looking for a Wal-Mart employee to help find her adults. I secured an employee and stayed there (again, teacher in control) and tried to help figure out where her guardians might be. I probably talked to her for a couple of minutes and all of a sudden this lady in a pink shirt (which the little girl had told me that Grandma was wearing) had appeared from an aisle. The little girl went with grandma and all was good again. However, as I walked away, there was another lady who told me that apparently grandma had just been standing there watching the employee and I chat away with her. I don't know about you, but if that had been my child that had wandered away, I would not stand there and watch. I would thank the person who had found them. I would have walked up to them as soon as I saw my child.

As I'm finally checking out, I ended up with the talkative and sometimes out of the box cashier. (Again inner teacher, but I think she might have had an IEP at some point in school...socially, it's just sometimes awkward conversation.) As she's scanning my cat food, she mentioned that I could feed her cats. She asked how many cats I had. I replied, "Just one." I ALMOST said that I wasn't a crazy cat lady. She told me she had eight. Oh, thank you, that for ONCE I had held my tongue. Apparently, five of them are newborn kittens.

Oh Wal-Mart...thank you for such an exhilarating time.

Sunday, September 26, 2010


Today I am thankful for many things.

Friday night I slept outside on our courthouse lawn to raise awareness of the homeless problem in my town. It was eye opening. When you have to go to the bathroom at 5:30 in the morning, you can't just get up and roll to the bathroom that is 4 feet away. It was cold. The traffic was awful and some idiot rode by on his motorcycle and revved his engine. Idiot. I wonder about how they shower, where they find food, where do they put their belongings. It makes me excited about the mission organization that I am working with right now on Wednesday nights. They are in the process of renovating a building to have a permanent homeless shelter.

I am thankful for this parent that works at my school. She leaves me notes of encouragement. I find them lunchbox, my computer, my school bag. On Friday, we went to the zoo and she left me one in my bag. I so adore her!

I am thankful for a friend who sent me verses. They were amazing and the constant theme throughout all of them were hope. When I take my eyes off of me and remind myself what truly is important, life is better.

I am thankful for my sister and my mom. They constantly are buying and giving supplies to my classroom. I am truly grateful for their small sacrifice.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Writing Conference blurb

I was talking with my Disliker during our conference. Our focus lesson had been on collecting words. He didn't have any yet. (The students were expected to look for words to collect during no walk, no talk, and then they could choose what to do after that.) I asked him about his other entries...trying to look for another teaching point. He said, "I have to find words. I might as well get it over with."

Oh....I felt so bad that he thought it was a chore. He made an amazing map of his face and after a teaching point on naming your entries, he was off and working on something else.

Tomorrow we are creating wish lists...excited to see what the writers wish for.


If my students knew how I wrote down about them, I think they'd stop talking.

My talker announced that he doesn't hear his thinking voice. I quickly dismiss it, letting him know I'll meet with him, knowing that a few days practice will help. A few days later, I was getting ready to conference with another reader and he lets me know in his normal voice (because the Talker doesn't know softer levels yet) that he remembered that I was going to work with him, and can we work now?

I pulled him over by me and then told him to say his name out loud. Then he was to say his name inside his head. You could see the lightbulb go off. With a big, "Oh...I do hear it all the time. Maybe I hear it, I just don't know it."

Oh Talker, you hit the nail on the head!!! I wish all students had that amazing light bulb experience you had!


It's something I don't have much of right now. I'm frustrated. I'm thankful God closes doors and sometimes quickly, but it always leave a little pang in my heart. Sometimes I wish I knew more of His plan. Sometimes I wonder if I'm following His plan or if I'm wandering off on my own. I know He knows how much it hurts. I just wish He'd provide more during that ache.

For now, I wait...and wait...and try to remain hopeful.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

They said it...

For some reason we were talking about the word revolution in our morning meeting and its meaning. I jokingly asked the class if we were going to have a revolution in our class and they all said no...then my Star Wars boy says, "But we will have revels." He means rebels...he just doesn't know it's with a b. Not sure when I'm going to burst his bubble.

I was walking by my Disliker...the only thing he likes is drawing monsters with three heads and creating puppets for writing workshop (future unit will probably be writing plays!). He said I looked like my hand was mad. I looked down and noticed my veins were popping a little from my hand...and as I was standing there near his desk, he reaches over and traces my bulging veins. I had to laugh (inside of course!).

When I give spelling tests, I always give a sentence with the word in it to help build context. Of course, students have to comment on my amazing sentences. The spelling word was "of". The sentence was...The pencil is made of wood. One of my students asked, "That's true, isn't it?" Another one popped in with, "She tells only absolutely true stories." (They got it from Gooney Bird...I just smiled.)

Knowing that I tell only absolutely true stories, I have somewhat warped my class. I teach, every year, the reason the trapezoid is the way it is, is because King Zoid was trapped in a pyramid where they cut off the top. Brilliant! Star Wars was cutting out pictures of Egyptian writing (because he likes Egypt) for his writer's notebook when I realized that maybe my stories are going too far. He showed me a picture of an Egyptian king and asked if it was King Zoid. Whoops!

I was meeting with students going over short vowel sounds when my pirate boy was trying to explain the word puch to me. It was supposed to be push and he had written a -ch instead. I asked him to give me a sentence with puch in it. Without hesitation, he said, "I caught a puch." I asked him what it meant and he then honestly said, "I don't know." At least he tried!

At the beginning of the year, I taped black paper over all of the baskets in the library to show what was open and what was not. One of my students talked about the baskets the other day and was very excited that a basket had been unlocked. I loved the choice of words they use.

One of my girls was given a different spelling list this week. One of her words was quaint. I asked her if she knew what it meant. She didn't. I told her that it meant an old fashioned sort of way. Without a pause, she came back with, "Like in the 80's?" I just sat there for a minute dumbfounded wondering if she knew what she had just said. Oh sweetie!

And the reason why I am loving the class right now...when I was conferencing with one boy about after we learn new words, we remember them. He said, "Because it's in my lexical system." They get it. They use it. They do it. We created covers for our writer's notebooks on Thursday and Friday. I am blown away by how much they got it. They chose pictures that were meaningful to them. My Star Wars boy wanted a picture of an old video game, but couldn't find it. I grabbed it off Google Images and went on. Hummingbird found a picture of Johnny Depp for Pirate boy. Another boy cut out a picture of a crayon because he likes to color. I am truly impressed!!! Excited to see how they grow this year!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


So, when I signed into my hotmail account, I was shocked to see I had 37 new e-mails. However, it turns out I was the victim of spam (don't know how that happened) and someone hacked my account and sent out a phony e-mail with probably an inappropriate link.

That's not the worst part. Turns out I did NOT delete some old contacts of guys I had gone out with. Yep...they got the e-mail and unfortunately, I did not receive an e-mail saying their address was insufficient.

Whoops...thankful this day is almost over and I can try again tomorrow!

Open mouth, insert foot

I always do this to myself. I speak before I think. I vocalize what I should only think. Today is no exception.

At the end of the day, I made a comment...I'm not really sure why, but I did.

Twenty minutes later, a person somewhat involved with the comment walked into my room. It was odd to see her, since I haven't seen her lately, but I wondered why she was in my room. Oh stupid me.

Thankfully, she honors our friendship enough to call me out on my stupid comment. Thankfully, she loves me enough to question why I would say what I did. Thankfully, she has the grace to forgive me.

While it was humbling to receive the correction, I am thoroughly ashamed that my words hurt two amazing people who I dearly love, honor, and admire. I can only move forward. Tomorrow I have the choice to stop and think before I speak. The bigger question is, how do I do that?