Back At It

I know… I know… How many times can one start over and pick it up, only to be dropped again?  I don’t know if there is an answer to that question.  My answer is as many times as it takes.  Things slow down, pause, and ultimately stop for one reason or another.  The big question is, does one have the courage to pick it back up and persevere?  I have started, and paused, and stopped, and ended this blog more than once.  But ultimately, here it is.  The mission the same. The voice very different.  I am now a mother, soon to be wife, a teacher of 15 years, and a new teacher to be next year.

So it is finally happening!  Next year I will take on the honor of being the technology teacher/specialist for my school.  Everything that I had put aside and let linger in the background is now moving to the forefront.  I have to re-emerse myself into the world I only watched from afar.  I am super excited and apprehensive.  Let’s see where this takes friends.

Time to “Get My Life”!

Well, yes…it is another Back to Work post.  Yes,  It is only July 13th.  Yes, some of you just went on summer break less than a month ago.  And, YES, it’s HOT!

One week from today I will greet my new 2015-2016 6th graders for their first day in their last year of elementary school.  I am still fortunate enough to be a pairing teacher, meaning I only teach half the required subjects, and my partner teaches the rest.  So I will challenge two new groups of readers and writers and historians beginning next week.

IMG_2142 But it’s also a new adventure for me personally as I usher my son into his educational career (10,ooo hours folks).  I have a four year old that will start kindergarten this year.  (I can’t believe that is true!!!!)  Having children does change you as a teacher. I like to think for the better.  But today I signed up to access his grades online, and the rest of this week will be spent fulfilling the school supply and classroom donation request of his new teacher and shopping for school uniforms after I spend my days preparing for the new year for my new students.  I know that she will be doing the same for him and that makes it a little easier to swallow.  So it will be an exciting new school year on many levels.

So, YES! It is time for me to get my life.  My little one is growing up.  I have let some things go to be with him and take care of him because nothing is more important than that.  But that is all changing now.  Homework after school, practice, dinner, and then bedtime.  If that all goes as planned it will be an early bedtime, which means more time for Mommy to get her life.  No promises, but folks, it’s that time.

What time is it for you?


Back to What???

Well, it’s hard to believe but I officially go back to work on Tuesday. Yep, tomorrow, Tuesday, July 15th. There were so many things that I wanted to do this summer and it feels like only half none of them got done. So what’s the holdup?


1. I moved classrooms this year (again) so I planned on unpacking and organizing my room over break. There was a lot of planning going on in my head but not a lot of unpacking. That means I would actually have to get dressed and drive all the way to school and then actually empty boxes.
2. I had also planned on reading some novels and professional books for the new year. Since I now will be teaching 6th grade language arts with social studies integrated, I planned on getting ahead with some reading. I have started to read one of the three professional books.
3. I took a summer gig taking our 6th graders to college.  They got to spend three weeks as community college students.  They attended morning sessions with professionals in the science and educations fields.  They got to use the college library and computer lab each day.  They also designed and constructed solar ovens and tested them out by making smores.  It was very cool.

So this week I will move forward, full steam ahead to two groups of new students and I really can’t wait. What do the next couple of weeks have in store for you?

The Revolution Has Been Televised…Sort of

Part of our American history curriculum  this year is learning about the American Revolution.  I used this topic to have my students learn and practice writing a research report.  Then when we came back from winter break, we were suddenly thrown into Breakfast in the Classroom.  In an effort not to lose those instructional minutes, I  quickly googled American Revolution videos and discovered the world of Liberty Kids.

Now don’t fret.  Although those videos are long off tv, you tube always saves the day.  (At least for me!)  What did I find but all of the Liberty Kids episodes in convenient 10 minute-ish chunks.  Perfect for Breakfast in the Classroom!  We are just about halfway through the series.  The kids are engaged while they are eating and learning about the American Revolution.  Win-Win!

What educational videos have you stumbled upon that you use in the classroom?

Pinned Up on Pinterest

Well since it is summer that means that as a teacher I have lots of time to WORK! Like most teachers my summer will not be filled sitting on a tropical beach somewhere enjoying this “vacation” (although kudos and enjoy to those of you who do get to). I am spending my summer taking classes, some required, some optional, planning for next year, and of course catching up on Pinterest, Facebook, and Instagram.

My hope is to get these all into meaningful and reasonable time allotments to be beneficial to you and to me. So I have polished up my Pinterest Boards and they are ready!


So what’s the big deal??? Well if you only follow my Teach Me Board or a couple of my boards, you won’t benefit from the fruits of my labor. So come and check out my new boards!



An Unexpected Gift at an Unexpected Time

I was on Facebook, I think, and  I saw this comment or link to Reddit Gifts.  They were doing a Gifts for the Teachers event.  Now I had never heard of Reddit Gifts before and really didn’t understand it, but I read, “FREE GIFTS FOR TEACHERS.”  Well, I’m a teacher, and free is my price, so what the heck.  The event was to gift teachers a $15-20 gift for the classroom.  Great!  We were already starting to go through our dry erase markers, so I thought I would request some Expo Markers to add to our room. (They really do last longer.)  Honestly, I really didn’t think that I would get a gift at all.  But, lo and behold, we were gifted.

So 2 boxes arrived at my door. (2?)

I opened the first (rather big) box and my jaw hit the floor.  I started to pull out box after box after box of colored Expo Markers.  Then there was box after box after box of black Expo markers.  Then there Expo Erasers and refills.  Then there were Expo white board wipes.


Then the next day, another box came.  WHAT???  More erasers and refills.

Here is what we received.  We really didn’t have to do much in return.  I just wrote a thank you note and we took a couple of pictures and that was it.  But words could truly not convey how excited and grateful I was, and then how excited my kids were.   It was truly an unexpected gift at an unexpected time.

What unexpected gift have you received?

The Third Time is a Charm

Well I have been working to relaunch this site and get myself situated to finally get this where I want it.  I’m a little anxious about how this will work.  I know that there are only good times ahead.  I think I am finally positioned to truly make this a community where we can all help problem solve the many situations we find ourselves in education today.

What do you think?

Welcome Back!


Well, it’s that time again. I have to say this year I have probably been the most excited to start a new year than any other. I was most excited to start a new reading journey with kiddos this year, given the arsenal we developed last year. Most exciting (and scary) was starting the classroom library over again. It was very difficult not to influence them how to categorize the books, and very intriguing to watch the ones that did develop.

But most of all, I am excited for the room of readers that I have! I can’t tell you how many kids wanted independent reading in the first day when we had books literally all over the room. They are going to keep me on my toes. So to that I say, “let the reading begin!”


Beat Me Up

I am not going to beat myself up. And I know none of you will either. But I haven’t been writing here. I haven’t been writing NaNoWriMo either. I finally got some time to write and I was too tired. The only reason I’m writing now is because we have an hour wait to be seated for dinner. I thought I should be productive. (I knew I should have brought my ipad!). But as you know, I haven’t been writing in public. It’s been too long. Somehow I’ve got to figure this out. A colleague or two have been toying with the idea of doing National Boards. I really would like to try again, but don’t know how in the world I can make it happen. So for now. I will try to write in public more often. (Baby steps to everyday) And for now it will be badly. (Baby steps with that too).


I ran into some hiccups and have been silent for a week. I have the post in my head, but it’s still not here. Here’s what happened.

I didn’t have anything to say.

I was behind in reading my RSS feed and so I had no material. I’m not to the point where I have a multitude of original sources to talk about. So once I realized I didn’t have anything to say, then I had something to talk about. But then a day became two days and I let life take over again.
So here I am again, writing poorly in public. Everyday part 2.