Monday, October 31, 2011


I learned...that kids in New England are so immune to the cold that shorts and snow is a common site.

Something great that happened was...I planned for and led Malachi's LC session this morning and it went well and I got good feedback!

Something challenging that happened was...trying to get Connor back into the classroom all while trying to figure out was bothering him.

A question I have do you resolve issues like Connor's "I don't want to be in school" gently but firmly and appropriately.

I wonder hopped up on sugar the kids will be tomorrow...

Friday, October 28, 2011


I learned...praising and encouraging a child can go help limit the number of stubborn moments amazingly well!

Something great that happened was...Malachi was ON today! He did so well upstairs at the learning center and it was so wonderful to see him engaged and doing well!

Something challenging that happened was...trying to help Neila during math while she insisted her answer was correct.

A question I have do you reign in a child who is a bit out of control without hurting their self-esteem?

I wonder about...when it's right to ignore a child who is in a mood or when you should talk it out with them.

Thursday, October 27, 2011


I learned...that positive praise and encouragement can help a child overcome their negativity issues.

Something great that happened was...I taught my first poetry/writing workshop lesson today and I feel like it went well! I was able to hold their attention, explain the prompts, and help them write great poems.

Something challenging that happened was...having Malachi in tears because someone blamed him for something he claimed he didn't do. It broke my heart to see the big tears stream down his face.

A question I have do you break the cycle of a child constantly giving you attitude?

I wonder about...if several of our kiddos actually are taking a break or are just taking an opportunity to wonder away...

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


I's so hard to juggle a reading group and a child having a meltdown at the same time.

Something great that happened was...I spoke up and mentioned to Jane I had a great idea for a type of poem to teach the kids and I get to teach it tomorrow!

Something challenging that happened was...the class was very disruptive and un-attentive today during my math lesson and it was hard to keep them quiet and focused.

A question I have do you really nip the class clown behavior it the bud? When does being gentle and kind about it stop working?

I wonder about...where al the information we fill the kids' heads with goes, it's amazing how much they've learned in 8 weeks.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


 I learned...the best way to start a conference with a parent is to ask them how their child likes school.

Something great that happened was...sitting down and planning with Jane today. It felt good to have a discussion about the curriculum next week and get a sense that she really thinks I'm doing well

Something challenging that happened was...trying to take Bhavya to the office and him refusing to go and then him trying to grab and hit me. I felt quite alone and quite nervous about what to do.

A question I have is...when is it ok to touch a student?

I wonder the moon can seriously affect the kids (and anyone for that matter).


I learned...that even six year olds can write amazing poems. Never underestimate the power of a child's brain!

Something great that happened was...I was able to have the class walk from lunch back to the room silently and orderly! Amazing what the incentive of a reward will do!

Something challenging that happened was...keeping the class focused and quiet during the end of morning meeting. It was a bit of a struggle, but I think I did well.

A question I have walking in the halls perfectly silently actually necessary?

I wonder about...why some kids are so emotional while some are so "tough"...

Monday, October 24, 2011


I learned...that being able to quickly figure out the anticedent of a behavior means an easy fix and a positive outcome for all involved.

Something great that happened was...I led my first reading group and it went really well! I feel like the boys got the lesson, they read the book well, and seemed to enjoy it.

Something challenging that happened was...having to take several of our kiddos to the bathroom since they've lost the privilege of going alone. Not really sure who this is punishing though...

A question I have do you help children learn why they are in school?

I wonder about...what meaning money really has to a bunch of 6 year olds...

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


I learned...that even though they seem so big and mature, they truly are 6 years old and that a simple fall or a hurt feelings can make them cry and remind you they are only 6.

Something great that happened was...I designed and implemented a rhyming bingo game with Malachi and it worked fantastically!

Something challenging that happened was...Shane and Max having a little war of words which resulted in Shane in tears and Max saying they weren't friends anymore.

A question I have do you, as a teacher, deal with "I'm not friends with you anymore" situations? How does one conflict negotiate?

I wonder teachers teach in the Pacific NW where it rains all the time and I bet recess is rare...kuddos to them!


I need to be a psychic and know when a child will meltdown and try your best to swoop in and prevent the meltdown from occurring.

Something great that happened was...I taught the Shoe Game and it went well and the kids loved it! It was a risk to teach a bunch of 6 year olds a game which involves taking off one show, but it was a hit!

Something challenging that happened was...dealing with attitude from 3 children within a span of 15 minutes. Uphda.

A question I have can I deal with attitude without getting sassy right back? What's the responsive class way to deal with this?

I wonder about...what the kids thing of me? Am I making an impact?

Monday, October 17, 2011


I learned...when it begins to click, it begins to click. Malachi was so "on" today and it was amazing to watch him really understanding what he was reading.

Something great that happened was...being hugged by the kids after being gone on Thursday and Friday for Sukkot! It made my morning!

Something challenging that happened was...trying to explain time to a child, they understood the o'clocks but the concept of adding and subtracting the time was a challenge and trying to explain it was a challenge too.

A question I have to really help kids get tricky concepts without actually telling the answers.

I wonder about...what it's like to learn all these foreign concepts. Is it like hearing a new language?

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


I learned...that when you tell 553 children to (practice) evacuating the school they will all fall silent and walk orderly out of the school, around the block, across a major road, and sit silently in a church. But ask them to walk to lunch, and you'll be lucky if two of them are facing forward and quiet.

Something great that happened was...I taught two whole class lessons, they went well, and Jane gave me positive feedback and excellent suggestions for the next time!

Something challenging that happened was...trying to begin using Bhavya's new behavior plan and figuring out the kinks and how to make it work best so that he is successful in his earning of rewards.

A question I have is...How long should one expect to wait to see if a behavior plan is making positive changes in a child's behavior?

I wonder well my student's really understood our lessons, did they just know it for the moment or really, really get it...

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


I learned...that something as simple as the wrong shirt can spoil a child's morning and once they're in their favorite shirt all can be right with the world!

Something great that happened was...I received my formal lesson evaluation from my supervisor and it appears to have been received well, and the constructive criticism I will value and apply to my practice.

Something challenging that happened was...trying to work on all the mini issues that came up during lunch without everything slipping into a full scale meltdown for a student.

A question I have is...does lesson prep become more automatic and less nerve-racking the more you do it?

I wonder much English Jonathan is really getting, he seems to be catching on a lot more, and I wonder what it's like in his head now...

Thursday, October 6, 2011


I learned...handwriting is far more involved than when I was a student. Frog-jump letters, songs about where you start your letters, and

Something great that happened was...I received good feedback from Jane about how my morning meetings are going, actually it was more of "I had such confidence in your ability that I actually haven't paid super close attention to them." But I'll take it!

Something challenging that happened was...having to give Malachi a consequence for his noncooperative attitude in the LC. It was hard to take something away from him, when I know he has a hard time going upstairs each day.

A question I have do you break students of annoying habits, like talking in voices (ala Jarjar Binks) without being rude or squashing their individuality?

I wonder about...what they will all be like tomorrow at 1:15 after we sugar them up with ice cream....

Wednesday, October 5, 2011


I learned...butterflies emerging in the middle of morning meeting is the best reason to toss the routine away for a bit!

Something great that happened was...I survived my first back to school night - and it was a great experience!

Something challenging that happened was...being confronted by an unhappy and slightly forceful parent at 8am, but the good thing was I was able to deal with it appropriately.

A question I have do you gently and appropriately deal with forceful and upset parents?

I wonder about...what it's like to be a butterfly emerging from your chrysalis.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


I learned...releasing a butterfly into the world is such an amazing experience!

Something great that happened was...I made it through my first lesson with no problems, and received great feedback, phew!

Something challenging that happened was...having to have Malachi come in at the end of our butterfly release party to go upstairs, it broke my heart to have to bring him in from such a great activity, and I knew his tears were real and hurting tears.

A question I have do you differentiate between a child who just needs to get there own way because of how they've been raised at home and a child who has "rock brain" moments because of actual special needs?

I wonder about...where our butterflies are flying off too...


I learned...that in your eyes it may be a "small problem" but to your average six year old, someone being in their rug spot is a "big problem" - no matter how you try to tell them otherwise.

Something great that happened was...a great morning meeting, I felt like I held their attention, got my messages across and had them learning without them really realizing that they were.

Something challenging that happened was...dealing with Bhavya having several rigid moments today over seemingly "small problems" which he saw as "big problems."  Even more challenging was trying to work with him while Jane and Jen looked on, no pressure...

A question I have do teachers do it all if they have no intern or aide or para? Two teachers in the room and we have 19 kids calling out names...I guess this is what Michelle and Jim Bob Duggar feel like all day every day...

I wonder I can get it all done, classwork, lesson/teaching work, MTELs, and manage to eat, breathe, and sleep.

Monday, October 3, 2011


I learned...there's a difference between hyper/active and silly. A child can be both and as a teacher it's up to you to sense when they've crossed from hyper/active into silly.

Something great that happened was...being able to approach two parents at dismissal and discuss small issues that happened during the day. I felt confident and respected.

Something challenging that happened was...having a student tell me they don't like me because I made them "do boring things" - not easy to hear, but bound to happen eventually.

A question I have do you guide children and maintain the structure of the classroom without making them not like you?

I wonder about...what's going on in the mind of a hyper/active child? Are they truly going 5 miles a minute? Do they realize it?


I learned...even on a personal (religious) day I think about the class and what they'd be doing at any given time of the day.

Saturday, October 1, 2011


I learned...that it's super hard to not just tell a student an answer and let them solve the problem themselves.  It may be clear to you, but it's not to them. Just try to explain the problem to them and help then see what you're seeing.

Something great that happened was...I successfully used the countdown timer and music to regain control of the class during the end of the day transition.  I could have lost my temper, but I was able to maintain my composer and keep the class focused.

Something challenging that happened was...trying to keep the kid's together and in line while at the same time deal with a student having a meltdown. I've never wished more that there were two of me, but there wasn't.

A question I have is...does the time teachers spent working with and assisting students with special needs, like Bhavya and Connor, help or hinder the rest of the class. Does it teach them how to work and exist with others or take away from their instruction time?

I wonder about...what it's like to be learning all this new information, so much math, and words, and rules, and more.