Thursday, May 5, 2016

#MTBoS30 - What's on your To-Do List for Summer?

May and I have a love-hate relationship.

I love May... 
... it's the last month of the school year
... the weather gets warmer and the days get longer
... no more new content in my AP class
... the AP Exam comes, giving my students the chance to "show what they know"
... I start thinking ahead to next year

I hate May...
... I won't see my school friends for a couple of months
... summer heat is coming
... most of my students graduate and run off, never to be seen or heard from again
... I need just one more week... day... hour to cram more info in their heads
... I start planning my summer workload before ever getting to enjoy a day of summer

Speaking of...

My summer started out as a plan to get up each morning for a walk, then come back to relax on the patio while enjoying the sounds of nature and a good book.  

Actually, I suppose that's still the plan.

On my summer reading list:
1)  Every issue of Forensic Science Teacher Magaine
2)  Mathematical Mindsets
3)  Multiple other #EduRead books that I need to go back and revisit
4)  Scoping out the ASCD Member Library (so many awesome books!!!)

On the rest of my list:
1)  Organizing my AP Stat binders
2)  Organizing my Forensic Science files - we are moving to a full year course!
3)  Prepping for a full year FS course
4)  Reconnecting with my MTBoS PLN
5)  Redefining my leadership role at school
6)  Some great Professional Learning Workshops

So who says that teachers have the summer off????

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

#MTBoS30 - One Good Thing

Several members of the #MTBoS blog over at the One Good Thing blog.  If you have a spare hour or two, go read some of the posts over there.. they really can warm your heart!

Today, while trying to figure out if I could really do this #MTBoS30 challenge, I started thinking about my day.  It was a good day overall, but one moment in particular will keep me going for these last 3 weeks.

Yesterday in Forensic Science, my co-teacher was lecturing on bones and the kids (as usual) were very engaged and asking a ton of questions.  One question they asked was answered with "maybe we'll be able to do that next year, but we are out of time this year."  The general response from the class was one of sadness.  This year's group has been awesome, but they are all a bit bummed because next year, we are moving the Forensics class to a full year course rather than a semester course.  One of the juniors immediately came up with a solution - a Forensics Club!  I told the student that we would look into it, but let's finish up the notes first.

Today, the student came to class asking if I had emailed the asst principal yet about Forensics Club.  This young lady went home last night, designed a t-shirt and already had a Google doc shared with some of the other students to generate ideas for club meetings, fundraising, etc.  Wow!  The energy and passion displayed by these underclassmen was just addicting.  The seniors even were jealous that they wouldn't have a chance to be a part of the club and asked if they could still get a t-shirt! :)

Any words of wisdom to a soon-to-be club sponsor? :)

Monday, May 2, 2016

#MTBoS30 - Finding Balance

Over the years, one thing that I have truly struggled with is finding a balance between my home and school life.  This is a common issue heard around the teacher table, so I know I'm not alone and I'm in great company... however, this year the lack of balance is really bothering me.

"Why?" you may ask... Well, that's something I've asked myself too.  I really don't know what is different this year other than I am turning 40 and having a mini mid-life crisis.  As a kid and young adult, 40 seemed the age of "grown-ups".  Now that 40 is just months away, I don't feel very grown up.  I don't feel like I have it all together and I should, right?  For some reason, 40 seems like such a milestone to me...

To be perfectly honest, I think the desire for balance is more than just my age.  My first love is the classroom and that needs to be brought back to the forefront of my mind.  Don't get me wrong, I haven't shortchanged my students in any way and they would never guess that I feel this way, but I really miss having the time and energy to create new engaging activities for them.  I am looking forward to spending time this summer reading and getting myself in the right mindset for rejuvenation.  I look forward to blogging and engaging with my PLN as I tackle this new era of my life.

Next year will be a time of change for me.  I am giving up some of my non-classroom responsibilities and that will be huge for me.  I will be taking on some new challenges as well, which will help me grow as a teacher and as a learner.  I will be refocusing my energies on my students and trying to connect with them on a regular basis.  I will find the balance that I sorely need in my life.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

#MTBoS30 - Happy May Day!

You might have noticed my absence... or maybe not. :)  It's been a good but very busy year.  However, with 3 weeks left of school, I decided to take @sophgermain up on her 30 day blogging challenge.  I can't (and won't) promise that any of these posts will be quality material, but I will try to post daily throughout May.

Spring is in the Air!!
Spring has always been my favorite season.  I love the longer days, the warmer weather, the sound of birds and wind-chimes in the air.  This year, spring is definitely my favorite because we had a door put in from our bedroom to the backyard patio, which has quickly become a favorite spot of mine!

Here's my view as I blog right now... It is so relaxing!  Today we decided to add some color, so we went out and purchased 4 hanging baskets to "plant" in our planters.  I know you can't see them, but they add a much needed splash of color.  I plan to spend most of the summer out here with a book and/or my laptop working on lesson plans!