Monday, September 26, 2011

Dealing with Heart Issues

"Tyler, what are you doing? Stop that!"

So often, those words come out of my mouth. Sadly, often I stop there. However, not today. I am trying to be more intentional about dealing with the heart issues behind behavior. Here's today example:

I give students a post-it note with an ordinal number on it. Students are to arrange themselves in the appropriate order as fast as they can without talking. Tyler has the number "ninth." I hear some commotion as students are pointing to Tyler and pointing to a spot, but Tyler remains obstinate where he is. I check the line. First, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth ... "Where's ninth?" I ask. Everyone points at Tyler. Tyler is at the end of the line. He has taken a pencil and tried to change his ninth to a nineteenth. I now have two options:

1) Ask Tyler to get in his right spot, comment on the silliness, and/or let it go.
2) Deal with the heart issue behind what he did.

Today, I chose the road less traveled and settled for option #2. Tyler waits for me in the hallway. Here's our conversation:

Teacher: "What did you do?"
Student: "I tried to change the number on my post-it and refused to get in my right spot."
Teacher: "Why?"
Student: "I don't know."
Teacher: "Well, if you don't know...who does?"
Student: "Well, I think I might know."
Teacher: "Go ahead."
Student: "I wanted to have the largest number, so I tried changing it."

Do you see the heart issue? It's pride. In his pride, he wanted to have the largest number. It's no different than the child who constantly cuts in line to get his preferred spot, the student to calls out without raising his hand because what he has to say is so important that interrupting is validated, etc... So Tyler and I have a deep conversation about pride and the foolishness of his actions.

This stuff is exhausting, but hopefully will bring forth much fruit.

Friday, August 19, 2011

3 hour, err more like 5 picture tour

And here it is, my room for the school year 2011-2012. The room is about double in square-footage from the old room. Good thing since I have about double the number of students!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011


Why am I nervous?

This is my seventh year teaching - fourth at my school.
This will be my 2nd year in second grade, so I am familiar with the curriculum and don't have to "wing it" as I did last year.

And yet... I am nervous. Why?

It all comes down to the fact that I don't trust God.

I struggle to trust him:
-to provide patience for me.
-to guide me.
-to give me strength.
-to provide for my needs.
-to forgive my failures.

You name it and while intellectually I know I should trust, I struggle to do so.

Hmmm - you'd think after 10 years of following Christ, I'd have this stuff down a little better. Thankful that his mercies are new every morning and that his faithfulness never fails!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Mr. Sandman...

I usually don't dream, but when I do my dreams are usually quite memorable. This summer I have had five back-to-school dreams.

Dream #1 - I go in for my first day of inservice, receive my list of students to's my same darlings! I've been moved to 3rd grade!

Dream #2 - First day of school and who walks in??? My same darlings - again, I've been moved to 3rd grade!

Dream #3 - I go in to talk with my P who tells me I have to switch grades because the previous 2nd grade teacher is returning. Therefore, I get moved - this time, to Kindergarten!

Dream #4 - I am in my 2nd grade room with my soon-to-be 24 2nd graders. One of the students runs away. So what do I do? I leave during my break - walk to his house which is conveniently next door and drag his rear back to school.

Dream #5 - I am in my 2nd grade room with my soon-to-be 24 2nd graders and they.are.wild! It was "how not to do" classroom management.

Wonder what the first days will bring?

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Shiny New Room

Wow it's been like 4 months since I've posted - oops! In the past four months I have:
  • judged regional science fair where all three of my students participating received blue ribbons and one received the judges' award!
  • closed out the school year.
  • packed up my classroom for our big move to the new school.
  • packed up my apartment for our big move to the new house.
  • took two precious weeks off after school was out to organize and unpack at the house.
  • worked part-time (12 hours a week) at the stationery store.
  • traveled to Lake of the Ozarks, MO for a great week vacation.
  • planned, prepared, created, etc.. for the new school.
  • tried not to freak out that I have 24 students!
  • freaked out about having 24 students.
  • set up my classroom.
  • hoping to do as little as possible these last two weeks of summer.

Enjoy these pictures of my classroom pre-set up:

Sunday, March 6, 2011

And here we are 19 days later

  • The potties were fixed and normal classroom life resumed 2/16. Sadly it is a pipe problem so there is always the possibility of it happening again. Good thing we're selling this school building and moving to another!
  • In the past 19 days we have: Celebrated Dr. Seuss' birthday, begun our March Madness Reading Challenge, finished up our Westward Expansion unit, learned range, median and mode, and visited both Venus and Earth in our Solar System Unit.
  • Next up, myself and three of my students will be attending the regional science fair competition. Fun, Fun, Fun!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

No Potties = No School

So, I am sitting at home on my comfy chair pretty much an hour earlier than usual.

Today the bathrooms at our school went down. First the bathrooms downstairs overflowed into the 5/6 grade room. No biggie though - we have the ones upstairs. Then the ones upstairs went kaput. And so what do you do when you have about 100 students in a school with no bathrooms at all?

School dismisses early.