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Saturday, September 14, 2013

This week's Five...

Here are my five random things from the week. I have to say up front that I am sad that my five holds less school and more personal on a weekly basis than what I wish. But this is at least partly because of not being in a classroom this year. I am feeling more than a little bit lost. I have lost my footing. But I want to stay in the habit and I want to participate because it keeps me in touch with more teachers which will continue to help me grow in the future. So.... here's my Five For Friday.  We went out with my family last night, so I'm posting on Saturday (no apologies). To read more or link up with your own Five, visit Doodlebugs page!

1. Changes to my blog. Check out my header now. It's now "officially" Education in Ms. Horn's world instead of Kindergarten in Ms. Horn's world. The lovely Lauren from Teach*Pray*Love Designs updated it for me! Hats off to her for taking the time to help me when she was already swamped with student teaching! Thanks so much Lauren!

2. A new project. I posted on facebook a social media last week that I need a project. After 3 years of going back to school and juggling kids and a job on top of that and then being a first year teacher last year (and still being a Mom), I really don't know what to do with myself with no lesson plans, no evening research, no long hours, no teaching responsibilities, and more than enough time, er, just the right amount of time, with my children.  I am discouraged and depressed. Yes, really. Are there things I can do? Yes. Is my office still in disarray and not fully moved into? yes. But seriously, I need a project. Project found. The guy who takes care of my lawn, the wonderful Sean Simpson, pointed out that if we don't haul in some dirt this fall, we could face cracked sidewalks over the winter due to how much the dirt has settled. So.... now we are looking into hauling in dirt, putting in a patio (whoot!), and planting grass this fall. I am thinking we need to put in a pergola too. Wouldn't that just make sense? And since we are going to be out in the wilderness hunting for flat limestone for patio rocks, I think we should also grab some less than flat rocks to build a retaining wall for my south flower bed to hold in the dirt over there. Right?
We HAVE to fill in dirt under here or it's in danger of cracking in the cold.
The dirt has settled all way back to the driveway.  So.... time to do some work! 

I will probably have to say goodbye to my strawberry patch, because the
dirt has settled here too. I don't know how I feel about this, except that
I am thinking this is a great place to put my PATIO.... 

Side note.... I know most people "love" to work on their own yard, but with the lawn mower that I currently own, I don't. I hate it. I would rather do without than give up my lawn care. And that is where we are at currently. We are doing without some things and holding tight til pay day, but I am still paying for lawncare. Yes, it is that important to me. We still have lawn care and cable. And I don't feel guilty. (maybe a little bit guilty, just not guilty enough to give it up).

3. Classroom management. Something I "pride" myself on being strong at. It has gone by the wayside. I am completely lost. What does classroom management look like when you work with small groups of different ages all the time? Because it isn't really the same. It's more about reinforcing what is already expected in the classroom. Also, I am fairly decent at motivating students at the Kindergarten level, but what does that look like for say... third grade? Because they are minimally motivated for the sticker on their charts, it's not like gold, like it is in Kindergarten. I am exploring options. I blogged about it here. And I would love to hear teachers weigh in, especially if you teach small groups at different grade levels! So comment, or link me to your blog or send me an email! Really, I appreciate the input.

4. Falling in love with not-so-early primary and intermediate grades. It is a huge shift in mindset for me. I taught preschool in a daycare for four years at the three year old level, then I worked in a Pre-K fours class, then I taught Kinder. My heart is truly with these little gems. But I am seeing the value, more and more each day, or the fun factor, of teaching the upper grades.  I am enthralled with watching the brain wake up and learn to process at a higher order thinking level than at primary grades. And I am loving that these students are responsible for their own learning, the teacher is the facilitator, but the student has the responsibility with what they do with the teaching the teacher provides.

5. I am really this person: Whatever you have, you will wish for the other. Last year, all I could think about was "being home." Now I am home, all I can think about is my friends, colleagues and Kinders in the panhandle. I miss them all terribly. I can't wait for my kids to grow up so I can go wherever I want to go! Seriously, that is the truth. (I know... relish every moment, but when I am an empty nester, look out world, here I come). It's hard to focus on gratitude when you are wishing for something other than what you have. I have a mind that sabotages me at every turn but I have the privilege of deciding what to focus on today. I can choose to be grateful for all I have right here, right now. That is my goal. I am choosing to be grateful for all I learned last year, for my teaching partner, for my kiddos, for the friends who saved my drowning soul.  I am grateful for this year, for less responsibility, my lovely home, my children's happiness and relative peace of mind, being close to family and a recovery community that makes my life infinitely better. But it's a choice today. I can wallow and wish, or choose to be content.

Sorry to say... not too much of my random, or not-so-random, week was captured through photos. I know next year will be different, but I can't guarantee that next week will be different.

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