Sunday, October 19, 2014

#MTBoSChallenge - Week 10 - Sunday Summary





Welcome to the #MTBoSChallenge! 

Each week there are two options:
  • On Saturdays, you can choose to blog on a weekly prompt.  Go check out the awesome and amazing posts submitted this week at Middle School Math Rules.  No worries if you didn't blog yesterday, you can still submit your post using the linky at the bottom of her post.
  • On Sundays, you can choose to blog a Sunday Summary of your week.  The idea for the Summary is to provide you a way to reflect on the past week and share what you are looking forward to this coming week.
Feel free to choose either option (or BOTH!), add it to the linky on the host page and don't forget to tweet it with the hashtag #MTBoSChallenge as well!

Now on to my post for the day...

My Sunday 3-2-1 Summary

3 things I did on my break:
  • Cleaned and organized my house!!  My house was a PIT!  This year has been full of many late nights and weekends, which means that ultimately my house suffered.  On Thursday, hubs and I spent all day cleaning and organizing the first floor.  Our front closet got a total re-do, a huge load of shoes, etc were donated to Goodwill, the floors all got hand-mopped, etc.  It was an exhausting day, but so necessary!
  • Craft shows!!  On Friday, hubs and I decided to take a day trip to a neighboring state and go to some craft shows.  We didn't really buy much, but I did get some new boots and got to see some cousins that I haven't seen in a while.  It was a beautiful fall day and I loved being able to run around and NOT think of school!
  • Read two books!!  I *heart* my Kindle, with big puffy heart loves!  After two very busy days, we stayed home yesterday and I totally vegged on the couch reading some good books :) 

2 goals for this week:
  • Walk more!!  It's been a while since I've met my 10K daily step goal for multiple days in the week.  When I'm in my classroom working, I set my timer for 30 minutes, then go for a short walk, but that typically only gets me to around 6K steps in the day.  I need to push myself to hit 10K at least 3 times this week.
  • Eat better!!  After 4 days off and not really watching what I ate, my wardrobe this week will pretty much consist of maxi dresses due to the comfort (and lack of a waistband!).  I need to really watch my diet this week to get back to my normal habits! 

1 thing I've missed lately:
  • My PLN!!  It's been a very busy year and as a result, I feel like I'm not growing professionally the way I should be.  I miss having the deep conversations with my #EduRead buddies and the rest of my Twitter PLN. 






Sunday, October 12, 2014

#MTBoSChallenge - Week 9 - Sunday Summary



Welcome to the #MTBoSChallenge! 

Each week there are two options:
  • On Saturdays, you can choose to blog on a weekly prompt.  Go check out the awesome and amazing posts submitted this week at Middle School Math Rules.  No worries if you didn't blog yesterday, you can still submit your post using the linky at the bottom of her post.
  • On Sundays, you can choose to blog a Sunday Summary of your week.  The idea for the Summary is to provide you a way to reflect on the past week and share what you are looking forward to this coming week.
Feel free to choose either option (or BOTH!), add it to the linky on the host page and don't forget to tweet it with the hashtag #MTBoSChallenge as well!

Now on to my post for the day...

My Sunday 3-2-1 Summary

3 good things that happened this week:
  • No meetings!!  This week was the first week of the year where I had no after-school meetings, and therefore, I was able to get things done early-ish and I made it home before dark every day!  For me, that's a VERY good thing!
  • Dinner with a friend!!  One of my colleagues had asked me a few weeks ago about going to dinner to talk about strategies she could use with her class to increase student engagement.  We went to dinner this week and I had such a delightful time talking math and teaching with her. 
  • Former students!!  This was definitely the week of former students as two of them came up to me at the previously mentioned dinner and then more came to see me at school this week.  I love hearing from former kiddos!  It is very reaffirming for me when a former student makes a point to say hi, catch me up on their life, and shares what they've been doing since high school. 

2 strategies I used this week in class:
  • Whip Around!!  We took a quiz this week, so the day before, I decided to try the Whip Around strategy to get the kids out of their seats for a few minutes and to start their brains thinking about what all we had learned.  I gave the kids 2 minutes to come up with a list of 3 things they had learned this chapter, then we all got up into a large circle around the room.  A Whip Around is similar to the Wave in a large stadium, but instead of moving our arms in a wave, we do it verbally.  One person started and we quickly went around the circle sharing one thing we had learned, hopefully with minimal repeats. 
  • Flipped classroom... kinda!!  On Monday, I had to be out in the morning for a required training, so I used the EduCreations app on my iPad to create a short video lesson for the kids to take notes and learn without me there.  It may not have been the most successful lesson ever, but it is totally how I plan to do sub lessons from now on!  The kids were quiet, engaged, and I didn't lose a day of instruction!  YAY!

1 thing I'm looking forward to this week:
  • Fall Break!!  We have parent teacher conferences Tuesday night and Wednesday morning, then we are off the rest of the week for Fall Break.  I really need this break to clean my house, get some rest, spend time with hubby, and in general, rebalance my life.  Hubs took off from work on Thursday and Friday as well, so I hope we can do a small day trip as well as deep clean our house and do some small organizational projects.











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Sunday, October 5, 2014

#MTBoSChallenge - Week 8 - Sunday Summary



Welcome to the #MTBoSChallenge! 

Each week there are two options:
  • On Saturdays, you can choose to blog on a weekly prompt.  This week's prompt is about organization.  Go check out the awesome and amazing posts submitted this week at Middle School Math Rules.  No worries if you didn't blog yesterday, you can still submit your post using the linky at the bottom of her post.
  • On Sundays, you can choose to blog a Sunday Summary of your week.  The idea for the Summary is to provide you a way to reflect on the past week and share what you are looking forward to this coming week.
Feel free to choose either option (or BOTH!), add it to the linky on the host page and don't forget to tweet it with the hashtag #MTBoSChallenge as well!

Now on to my post for the day...

My Sunday 3-2-1 Summary

3 things I HAVE to do:
  • Prepare for a sub for tomorrow due to a PD training.
  • Clean my house.. it's a pit :(
  • Plan this week's lessons

2 things I HOPE to do:
  • Catch up...
  • Find balance...

1 thing I'm HAPPY to do:
  • This upcoming week has zero after-school meetings!  You have no idea how happy that makes me... :)





Saturday, October 4, 2014

Worn Out

**Warning... this is a whiny post... feel free to ignore and move on**

We are 7 weeks into the school year and I am worn out. 

I want to blog... I *need* to blog... but I find myself with zero energy by the time the weekend rolls around and more weekends than not, I've spent at least one day at school trying (but failing) to catch up.

I still have things on my to-do list that I wrote there in August.  Seriously :(

For the most part, my classes are going well and I would hope that none of my students have a clue about how rough this year has been.  However, I can see it in my lessons over the past week or two because the lessons haven't been quite as engaging as I want them to be.  This makes me sad.

I haven't blogged here because I don't want to be negative.  Good things are happening in my life and in my classroom.  But the other stuff sometimes gets in the way.  I hate the other stuff.  I need to blog about the good stuff, but the other stuff takes more time than I have available.

If you are curious about where I have been blogging, then head over to my 180blog.  I've only missed 2 days so far and I'm pretty pumped about that!  I figured out how to do that blog via my phone and it makes it much easier.  Check it out here:  My 180 blog

Sunday, September 28, 2014

#MTBoS Challenge - Week 7 - Sunday Summary



Welcome to the #MTBoSChallenge! 

Each week there are two options:
  • On Saturdays, you can choose to blog on a weekly prompt.  This week's prompt is about setting goals for October.  Go check out the awesome and amazing posts submitted this week at Middle School Math Rules.  No worries if you didn't blog yesterday, you can still submit your post using the linky at the bottom of her post.
  • On Sundays, you can choose to blog a Sunday Summary of your week.  The idea for the Summary is to provide you a way to reflect on the past week and share what you are looking forward to this coming week.
Feel free to choose either option (or BOTH!), add it to the linky on the host page and don't forget to tweet it with the hashtag #MTBoSChallenge as well!

Now on to my post for the day...

My Sunday 3-2-1 Summary

3 goals for October:
  • Get caught up!  This school year so far has been fitting of a Dickens novel... It has been the "best of times" in many ways as I have some really awesome students and have had some really great teaching days.  However, it's also been the "worst of times" as I struggle to balance my new responsibilities and not let anything crash and burn as I learn to juggle all of the things I do.
  • Redo my bedroom!  Years ago, we ripped up the carpet in our living areas and went with the concrete subfloor as the main flooring.  Hubs has decided he wants to do this in our bedroom as well, so there will be some home renovation projects coming up in the future weekends... (assuming goal #1 is met first).
  • Read more!  I have some really great novels waiting for me on my Kindle.  I've neglected my enjoyment reading a lot this year and I want to spend some time focusing on things that relax me, such as reading.

2 things I'm proud of this week:
  • My students!  We took our first test of the semester this week and I'm so happy with how well the students did.  I believe my kids are really taking this year's mantra of "The best way to learn is to DO." by heart and I often hear them comment about how class goes by so quickly, even though we learn a lot each day.
  • My lessons!  I spent a bit more time on writing descriptions of data this week and I think it's going to pay off in the long run. 

1 fun purchase this week:
  • Jewelry!  Last weekend, I wasn't feeling great, which is why there wasn't a Sunday Summary post.  While resting, I decided to browse ebay for some funky vintage jewelry and I found a great auction of about 50 vintage necklaces.  The box arrived on Thursday and I finally got it all sorted out yesterday.  I can't wait to wear some of them!


Submit your Sunday Summary here!








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Sunday, September 14, 2014

#MTBoSChallenge - Week 5 - Sunday Summary



Welcome to the #MTBoSChallenge! 

Each week there are two options:
  • On Saturdays, you can choose to blog on a weekly prompt.  This week's prompt is about the favorite review activities.  Go check out the awesome and amazing posts submitted this week at Middle School Math Rules.  No worries if you didn't blog yesterday, you can still submit your post using the linky at the bottom of her post.
  • On Sundays, you can choose to blog a Sunday Summary of your week.  The idea for the Summary is to provide you a way to reflect on the past week and share what you are looking forward to this coming week.
Feel free to choose either option (or BOTH!), add it to the linky on the host page and don't forget to tweet it with the hashtag #MTBoSChallenge as well!

Now on to my post for the day...

My Sunday 3-2-1 Summary

3 things that made me smile this week:
  • New Shoes!  Last weekend, I went to Wal-Mart (which is WAY out of the norm for me!) and ran across these fake Toms.  I've wanted a pair of leopard canvas shoes for awhile, so I was happy to have found them AND they're pretty comfy!   (Excuse the dirty floor.. I need to mop!)
  • My friends!  One of my hallmates tweeted me last weekend to say she had purchased a gift for me.  She stopped me in the hall early this week to hold me to come to her room...

 

  • My neighbors!  On Wednesday, I actually made it home during daylight hours (woohoo!), so hubby and I decided to walk to dinner.  On the way home, we took a longer route to burn off some of those calories!  On the walk, here's what I saw...


2 things I'm proud of this week:
  • I feel like I have done a good job with "WICOR-izing" my classroom.  We did a Chalk Talk activity to review for a quiz and my kids really enjoyed it.  I love that every day I am using WICOR strategies to engage my students.
  • I have made it a month with my 180blogging and only missed ONE day!  YAY!  This time last year, I had already missed several days... WIN!  Check out my 180blog here:  http://druinok180.blogspot.com/

1 thing I'm NOT looking forward to this week:
  • This is my week of many meetings.  Lots of late nights in my future... :(

What is YOUR Sunday Summary?  Add it to the linky below!









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Sunday, September 7, 2014

#MTBoSChallenge - Week 4 - Sunday Summary



Welcome to the #MTBoSChallenge! 

Each week there are two options:
  • On Saturdays, you can choose to blog on a weekly prompt.  This week's prompt is about the first week of school.  Go check out the awesome and amazing posts submitted this week at Middle School Math Rules.  No worries if you didn't blog yesterday, you can still submit your post using the linky at the bottom of her post.
  • On Sundays, you can choose to blog a Sunday Summary of your week.  The idea for the Summary is to provide you a way to reflect on the past week and share what you are looking forward to this coming week.
Feel free to choose either option (or BOTH!), add it to the linky on the host page and don't forget to tweet it with the hashtag #MTBoSChallenge as well!

Now on to my post for the day...

My Sunday 3-2-1 Summary

3 strategies I used this week:
  • Word Toss - I learned this strategy in my AVID Critical Reading strand this summer and then ran across it again in the book 'Differentiating Textbooks'.  The idea is to take 6-10 words from a lesson, article, book, etc and ask students to write a single, coherent sentence using as many of the words as possible.  I used this as an exit ticket on the day we started talking about observational studies and experiments.  Next time, I would like to try it as a Pre/Post assessment where the students write a sentence prior to the lesson then again after the lesson to see how their understanding of the words change.

  • 3-2-1 Summary - This strategy is an "oldie but goodie" that I used to summarize a short video that we watched over experimental design.  Students were asked to write about 3 things they learned, 2 vocabulary words from the video, and 1 question they still had. 

  • Chalk Talk - I read about this strategy in this week's #EduRead article and I was quite excited to try it out.  I did our AVID Tutor Training yesterday, so I decided to use Chalk Talk after watching a sample tutorial video.  I really loved the comments and can't wait to use this in my classroom too!
    2 things that I purchased this week:
    • A good friend of mine (C.) introduced me to the Dexter 'DexFlex' flats from Payless Shoes.  I have not purchased shoes at Payless for YEARS because I didn't like the quality or comfort of the shoes they had in stock.  When C. told me that I really should try them, I was very hesitant at first, but now they are my go-to shoe!  I had 4 pairs already (black, pewter, floral, and white eyelet), but last weekend, I decided to check on their website to see if they had any new fall patterns.  I have wanted a pair of nude shoes for a while, but did not like the look of the nude shoes that were in the Payless stores, but I love the nude/black combo that is new this fall!  I think the gray/black combo will also be a great addition to my fall wardrobe!
      1 thing that I'm grateful for this week:
      • Air Conditioning!!  The a/c in my classroom hasn't worked at all very well for a long time.  No amount of "putting the man in the house" did anything to cool my room down.  After some a lot of begging and pleading for relief, it finally was fixed on Friday and my room is now quite pleasant!  Of course, this comes just in time for cooler weather to arrive, but that's okay.. I have a/c again! :)

      What is YOUR Sunday Summary?  Add it to the linky below!










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