I had hoped to get to more regular posting; however, my schedule at school and home has been nuts the past month or so. Between our MAP testing schedule, kiddos finishing research projects, the of the school year unwillingness to work, Gaby's birthday, home impreovement projects, and life in general, I have had little time for anything other than what I need to try to get accomplished every single day.
We have jsut two weeks left in the school year. I'm so excited and sad to see this first year come to an end. It has certainly had some ups and downs; however, all in all it's been a great year! I keep telling my kids (and thus telling myself) that we need to finish strong. I know we are going to make it to the end.
Some news professionally, I'm changing to another school in the district. This one is a bit closer to home, so my drive will be shorter each day. Also, I hear great things about the school and the team working there. One other very positive thing is that two of my fellow teachers are moving there as well, and I get along great with them! I will still be teaching 6-8 English Language Arts, so everything I've learned this year, I'll get to apply to next year.
I'm very excited to see what this change brings for me! Plus, I know I'll get to continue working with students who need what I have to offer.
One of my 8th graders commented to me, "Mrs. Green, you always seem like you're in a great mood. Except when you don't feel good--that doesn't count." I told him, "It's so much easier to be in a good mood every day. Being angry or grouchy is too much work for me. I like to do things the easy way." He just knowingly nodded his head and smiled back at me.
This is how I'm ending my year--positively and kindly. I hope as the next two weeks wrap up, my kids remember me for my positive attitude and kindness.
This first year of full time teaching has left me with some apprehension at times. I put so much pressure on myself. No matter how many times I hear I'm doing a good job, I am still insecure and seed of self-doubt enter my head.
I know I've been called to be a teacher. I know I am lucky to share my passion with my students. I love my content area, and I love my students. However, sometimes I get so caught up in my own insecurities that even my facade cracks. I'm pretty good at hiding my insecure and only letting it out with the people closest to me.
This week, I had situations with several students that reinforced I am doing what I've been called to do. I'm teaching what I'm supposed to be teaching, and until I'm certain the signs I'm receiving show me otherwise I'm where I'm supposed to be. When I teach, it's about the students: reaching them, helping them, being a kind face they can see every day. When you see the concept finally click or when the child later thanks you for your patience and time explaining an idea, that's when you know you're doing right.
Wow! This show has me hooked after the first episode. I have two reactions to this show:
1. I love how respectful the show hosts were to all parties involved. I feel like that sets a tone of positivity for the whole series. I appreciate them and what they're trying to do with this show. It would be amazing if everyone could work together to solve their problems. Gosh what a little collaboration and open dialog wouldn't do for people to help solve problems.
2. Israel/Palestine is beautiful. Oh my word. I would love to go visit. To walk where Jesus did and visit these incredible places I've studied since I was a child, would be an amazing experience. As a Christian, I was moved almost to tears seeing this footage and the strife that exists in this beautiful place.
We will be regular viewers of this series. I can't wait to see what's in store.
Although not yet officially spring, I feel the change in the air. Early spring flowers have started to bloom. We've picked up some items for the garden and are prepping our seeds. Spring is certainly in the air, and after what seemed like a long winter I'm embracing the change.
I have two weeks and two days until Spring Break. The kids are restless and so am I. I'm looking forward to some time with my family and celebrating Easter.
I'm also ready for work in the garden--hours of planting, weeding, and tending to provide fresh food for our little family this year. I love the peace I feel when I'm tending the garden. It's just me...and the snakes, and the rabbits, and the bugs, and the spiders...enjoying the quiet time to think and enjoy being outside.
I'm ready for green and to enjoy with all my senses as the earth sheds the gray of winter and revives herself after the long winter slumber.
Ah spring, though you aren't my favorite, I have certainly missed you.
It's easy to focus on the positive and share photos, memories, etc. that only show you in the best light. However, my life isn't perfect. I argue with my husband. I make my daughter mad. I have days where I get down about things and don't want to leave the house. These things are all normal, and they happen to each of us!
Yesterday was one of the days I made my daughter mad. She was invited to a birthday party at our local ice rink. She really wanted to go, but has been dealing with a serious allergy attack that has her sinuses impacted. We chatted and she agreed that she wasn't going to skate. So far, so good.
However, when time came for the kids to start skating, Gab didn't want to leave. She didn't want to skate, but she didn't want to leave. Well, by this time the roads were also starting to get covered with the snow that was falling. I shut her down and told her we were leaving.
As we were walking out, this was the face she was giving me.
My post on Instagram mentioned that things aren't always rainbows and sunshine around here. They aren't! My life is real and I have all the normal struggles anyone else does. My kid is usually very good-natured and we usually get along quite well, but yesterday things were real.
The good news is: she got over her issues. We came home, got snowed in, and had a wonderful evening hanging out as a family watching a movie. We might have some minor storms, but in the end the rainbows and sunshine prevail.
I wasn't sure which way to go with the title. Honestly, I've appreciated the snow days; however, winter isn't over and we have more nasty weather on the way this weekend.
More importantly, I need some of our spring break. I need a few days (where I'm not sick) to reset my system. I need some quality time with the family. I need some time for myself. I need time to read. I need time to write.
Again, I'm not trying to sound ungrateful, but I really want a few days for break.
However, I was able to make decent use of today. I drove around taking photos of our lovely town. Have I ever mentioned how much I love the way the river looks covered in ice and snow? When I was a little girl I always thought the floating ice/snow rings looked like doughnuts. I still call them that.
I found a new angle of the bridge, and I really like how this image turned out. Take a look, here it is below. I see this bridge daily, but its beauty never ceases to amaze me.
Oh and it was SO cold, I had to take a photo of my rosy cheeks. Happy snow day!
I posted around New Years about goals rather than resolutions. For me, goals just work better. One thing I want to make a priority this year is my writing. That is a huge goal for me.
I have always been the type of person to notice beauty in unusual places, to celebrate the ordinary along side the extraordinary. I'm not trying to brag or set myself aside from anyone else; I just look at things differently some times.
To help me achieve my goal, I want to regularly keep a journal. I picked up some nice, green Moleskine journals to help motivate me to write. I will continue refining the more interesting pieces and then share the best here with you. My ultimate goal: to get work I feel worthy of submitting for publication.
We have some trips planned for the summer, so I want to write travel essays for these. Some events are as small as camping at the lake, while another is a trip halfway across the country for a family vacation. (Side note: I'm incredibly exciting we are returning to Myrtle Beach this summer!)
Goals: make them, measure them, hold yourself accountable, watch yourself accomplish something! I'm still debating whether or not I'll share the writing here or dedicate another space for that writing--probably the latter.
Changing the subject slightly but still on the goals theme. I recently snapped this photo of myself with my phone. I didn't think too much of it except that I thought is was nice and used it to update my Facebook profile picture. Holy crap! My friends know how to make a girl feel good about herself, even if it's only superficial. Ask my husband, I actually am very insecure and have rather low self esteem. Honestly, I have work up my courage to get through uncomfortable situations. I'm a firm believer of "fake it until you make it." So I'm giving myself another goal to work on: continue to put myself in uncomfortable situations and work on my confidence.
Here's the link to the writing section if you're interested. Angie Writes I'll get a link in the sidebar soon.
This was a response from my dad that frustrated me to no end as a child. We would ask, after he made a request of us, "Do we have to?"
His reply was always, "No, you get to!"
I understood where he was going with his response then and gained a somewhat greater appreciation for this response as a parent. However, as a teacher, I have renewed and even excited passion for this phrase.
Recently, it seems the students want to check and see if I'm really serious with my request of them. So, I reply with my serious tone and face that they don't have to do the activity but rather they get to. I want them to know I'm not trying to be smart, but rather that there is an alternative.
Finally, today, one of the kids asked me, "Mrs. Green, why do you make it sound like we have a choice when we really don't?"
Ah, the moment I had been waiting for had arrived.
What followed was a wonderful and sincere conversation about attitude, perspective, and how we handle things that come our way.
It was one of those moments where a few kids look at you like you're crazy because something in their life keeps them from seeing the positive side of things. However, you could see the light bulb turn on for many of the students.
Those are the teachable moments. The kids didn't learn a thing at that specific moment about English, but they did hear a lesson about keeping a positive outlook and perspective is everything.
Sometimes it's not about the standards we teach but the lessons the kids learn.
Thanks for the lesson, Old Man. I know it will continue to frustrate and enlighten children for many years to come.
So, what kind of day did you make for yourself? Mine was awesome...as good as I could have anticipated.
I'll admit, all weekend I was in a bit of denial that we had to go back to school today. Didn't we just start break? Oh yeah, I wasted mine between the couch and bed not feeling well. I really would have liked a couple more days.
However, my drive this morning allowed me to focus on my blessings. I made the choice to go in with a great attitude and make today a great day.
Did you know you have that power? You can make the choice to have a great day. I could have let myself get down a couple times, but I opted to make things great instead.
Today was a great day getting back into the teaching groove! I couldn't have asked for more than what I received.
I'm not much for New Year Resolutions, but I'm a big fan of setting goals. Resolutions imply pressure, unrealistic expectations, and failure a few months into the year. I don't enjoy feeling like I'm setting myself up for failure. I can, however, get on board with setting a goal for myself.
My 2015 goal is to leave the year deliberately. I want to feel as though I'm making decisions and treating myself and others with thought and purpose. I want to get away from doing things out of obligation, self-imposed responsibility, or even simply routine. I want everything I do and say to be thoughtful and purposeful.
Why don't you join me? What is your goal, theme, or even resolution for 2015?