Friday, January 22, 2016

Five for Friday: Snow Day Edition

It's time for....
I swear that I would never post anymore if it wasn't for Linky parties.    As always, thanks to Doodle Bugs Teaching for hosting!

It also helps when you have a...

Jealous?  If you are on the East Coast, then you are probably off from school too.  My little one has been up since 6 and was outside sledding by 8:00.  Fortunately our neighbors have a steep driveway, so she and her friend are having a blast.  There is about an inch of snow, and now there is some sleet coming down. So, I am inside watching reruns of Beverly Hills 90210 creating awesome lessons for school next week.  Later on my daughter and I may do some crafting or science.  I love snow days!

Grades are done!  Grades are done!  Grades are done!  Our new learning management system has many quirks that we are still trying to figure out, so getting everything entered and finalized was a huge accomplishment.  Second quarter is over, and now we are officially halfway through the year.  

Okay, so this was two weeks ago, but I never got the chance to post from the Carolina Bloggers Meet-up.

I had a great time meeting some fellow bloggers!  I didn't get to talk to everyone as much as I would have liked, but I met some really great people.  Some are very dedicated bloggers, some are intermittent like me.  It was interesting to hear what other teachers across the area are experiencing in education.  Now I have some great new blogs to follow too!
New to teach this quarter: Fractions!  I love teaching fractions, and my students love learning about them because I do a lot of lessons involving food:  fraction cake to introduce the whole, conversation hearts to represent fractions of a group, chewy cookies cut and eaten to represent mixed numbers.  The lessons are always memorable, and my hope is that the content is just as memorable!

My latest obsession...
I watched the first few episodes of this show when it first started, and I was very intrigued.  At that time we had a free trial of premium channels, but we didn't keep it after that.  Now I have downloaded the app for Showtime catching up on the first two seasons during the 30-day free trial.  I am having trouble trying to find time to watch it, but I'm hoping to have some extra time this weekend.  It really is an interesting show, the way that it is told from several viewpoints.  Plus I still have a crush on Joshua Jackson (I heart Pacey!).  Yes, I'm a geek.

Stay warm, friends!

Friday, January 8, 2016

Back Again...Five for Friday Fun!

So it's been awhile, but I'm back to participate in...

Thank you to Doodle Bugs Teaching for the motivation to get me blogging again.  I've always been a fan of participating in Linky parties, and this is one of my favorites.  Another motivation for writing a blog post is

 I'm going to my first blogger meet-up tomorrow!  I'm not very talkative in groups, and I definitely express myself better through writing, so this will be a stretch for me socially.  I work with the organizer (the amazing Amanda from Elementary Teacher Files), so thankfully I won't feel completely out of place!

Does your school do a morning newscast?  Our school has PNN, the Patriot News Network, to do our morning announcements.  Our media specialist and technology facilitator run a daily broadcast through YouTube for classes to view.  This week my daughter was one of the newscasters.  Coming to school each day was even more fun for both of us!

Star Wars, have you seen it?  AWESOME!!!!!  I've been trying to get my daughter into Star Wars, and this movie finally did it.  I loved it.  She loved it.  Rey is my new hero, and I didn't think that anyone could replace Princess Leia.

I don't think that I've posted since we got a kitten.  He is sweet, adorable, and has absolutely no sense of time.  None.  He is trying to get to the fish tank in the middle of the night.  He tries to wake me up for food at 4 a.m. (even if there is food in his dish).  We were amazed that we made it through Christmas without him destroying our tree, but he seems to be going crazy since we have all gone back to school.  

And finally, my favorite Christmas card...

What makes this card especially cool is that the student doesn't know that I love all things Hip.  It's hip to be a teacher.

Teach on, friends.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Five for Friday: July 24

FRIDAY!!!!!  Which means it's time to link up with Doodle Bugs Teaching.  Here are 5 things about my week:

Twitter!  In this post last week, I mentioned how I was in Social Media Overload.  I guess I have been trying too many things at once.  I tried my first Twitter Chat  last Saturday morning, and it was pretty cool.  It was all for newbies like me at #nt2t (New Teachers to Twitter).  It was a lot of affirmation of why teachers should be using Twitter to connect with other educators.  I definitely made some connections and gained several new followers.  Now I am looking forward to participating in some other live chats and really seeing where Twitter can take me. 

Global Connections/Collaboration!  Next week, I get to present at my district's Summer Institute (our annual staff development).  I am working with 3 other phenomenal teachers to develop a session on the value of making connections and how that can be used in the classroom.  It has been a great experience to learn from some teachers who regularly use social media to connect their classrooms with others.  
       Side note: one member of my group is a high school science teacher who just came back from an exploration of the Galapagos Islands and has traveled to every continent except Africa for the sake of science.  Without going into too much detail, she is my new hero.

My new sneakers!  

I wasn't blogging much last summer/fall when I somehow tore a tendon in my ankle.  Before that, I was attempting to be a runner, and I had a really nice pair of Mizuno's.  I ended up wearing them out during while I recovered from my ankle injury.  I mostly only wore one shoe (while the other was in either a cast or a walking boot).  When I was able to wear both shoes, I had my hurt foot in a brace.  The brace must have destroyed that sneaker so that now I have been getting crazy blisters on that foot when I try to go walking.  So...I finally went to get a new pair of sneakers (I'd like to say running shoes, but I was barely a runner before my injury).  I ended up with a pair of Brooks, and so far I am pretty happy!  I like that they have a 30 day return policy, no matter the condition.  After the year I've had, I have a new appreciation for wearing good shoes and taking care of my feet.  I am going for some long walks, and hopefully will work up the courage to run again.

This week's read:  A Wedding in December by Anita Shreve.
A few year's ago, I read The Pilot's Wife by the same author.  I loved that book, so I was looking forward to reading this one.  It is an interesting account of a group of high school friends who have their own sort-of reunion over 25 years later when two members of their group reconnect and decide to get married.  It brings up a lot of "what-if's" for all of them as they reflect the paths that their lives have taken.  There were some slow parts, but I love that the book left me wondering about some of their final decisions.  

My daughter is obsessed with pugs.  We don't have any pets at all, but we may have to seriously consider a pug if we decide to get a dog.  They really are so ugly that they're cute.  I can't decide which is funnier, the screaming or the head tilts.  I just don't want one that snores.

Enjoy your day!!!

Sunday, July 19, 2015

The Sunday Scoop

Happy Sunday morning!!!  I am linking up with Teaching Trio for The Sunday Scoop.  Woo-hoo for link parties!  

HAVE to do:

  • Laundry.  Ugh.
  • Does your district use iCurio?  It is an awesome platform for designing assignments, with TONS of ready-to-go resources.  I am working towards my champion status, which is giving me the opportunity to learn even more about this program.  
  • I bought new sneakers yesterday, so I need to try them out by walking.  BUT...I love being able to go bike-riding with my husband.  No fancy sneakers needed!
HOPE to do:
  • There is an art museum in Charlotte that does a free monthly event for kids (half-price for adults: bonus!).  I took my daughter last month and she had a going through the activities and creating with the awesome supplies. Paint pens?  Yes, please!  We didn't even have time to go through the actual art gallery.
  • I have over a hundred years of photos to organize.  I am not exaggerating.  I have taken on the task of putting all of my family's photos into some other format, and there are literally photos from the late 1800's.  Crazy, right?  I have a huge task ahead of me, and I am just trying to get through them a little at a time.
HAPPY to do:
  • I'm really okay with doing anything on my list (besides the laundry), but I really am happy to just sit on the couch in my jammies for a bit while drinking my tea.  Summer will be over too soon, and I just don't take enough time to just do nothing.  
Enjoy your day, friends!!!

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Social Media Overload!!!

Twitter Chats.
Google Hangout.

I seriously am going into Social Media overload.  I always considered myself a tech-savvy person, but I am finding out how behind the times I am.  

Fortunately, I participated in my first Twitter Chat this morning, just for newbies like me!  It was New Teachers to Twitter, otherwise known as #NT2T.  Although I could tell that some of the participants were seasoned Twitter-ites (is that a word?  If not, I just made it one), there were those like me who just struggled with reading the feed of posts.  I was very grateful for those who were helping out us amateurs.  I am also beginning to appreciate the power of the hashtag.

If you have read this and feel my pain of being so new at all of this, please feel free to share your favorite hashtags or live chats to follow.  Thank you!!!!!!!

Friday, July 17, 2015

Five for Friday: July 17

Friday already?  I love summertime, where every day is basically a Friday!  It's time to link up with Doodle Bugs Teaching for the weekly party.  Here are five highlights from my week.

My daughter just turned 8!!!!  I can't believe how big she is getting.  We had a slumber party with a few friends a couple of weeks ago, and this week we celebrated by going to see...
I was an Annie junkie as a kid.  I had the soundtrack (on vinyl) and had it memorized well before the first movie version even came out.  I was about my daughter's age when I first saw it live, so I was beyond excited to get to take her to see it.  And no, I didn't sing along (but I wanted to!).

This week's read...The Castaways by Elin Hilderbrand.  My sister loaned this to me, as I had never read any books by Elin Hilderbrand before.  I was expecting some sort of beach-themed love story, which is totally not my preferred genre, so I was pleasantly surprised by the aspect of mystery to this book.  The characters are far from perfect, although some situations are not the most plausible (although, I could not imagine living in an idyllic place like Nantucket).  I will definitely check out some other books by her.

Next up...

I was a guest blogger on The Techie Teacher!
One of my goals this summer is to increase my blog following, so I thought that this would be a great way to get some of my ideas out there and reach a larger audience.  I wrote about Wixie, a multi-purpose presentation/creation tool that is big in my school district.  It is great for younger students, so I wanted to share some of the things that we have done with it.  Unfortunately it is not a free program, but I find that many free sites are only good to a certain extent.  If there is something good that could benefit a large population of students, then I think that schools should pay and use it to its potential!

Next up is...

I downloaded this app a few days ago and have been using it to communicate with some teachers that I will be working with to do a global connection presentation.  More on that to come, but so far I am enjoying Voxer.  It is pretty much a walkie-talkie that records your conversations/messages.  It's like a collaborative voice mail on steroids.  One member of my group uses Voxer regularly to collaborate with a wide network of teachers.   I can't wait to learn all of the uses for this app!

Last, but not least...


How cool was the flyby of Pluto?  I mean, NewHorizons has been traveling for 9 years and JUST got there.  
 Seriously, though, I just can't fathom that kind of forethought and planning.  Science is awesome, and I'm glad that there are geniuses who can think like this while I can just sit here in awe.  

You are still loved, Pluto.  Science rocks.  

Have a great weekend!!!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Guest Blogger Post: Wixie

Happy Tuesday!  I am excited to be a guest blogger over at The Techie Teacher. Her blog is an incredible resource of all things technology in the classroom (plus her name is Julie, so you know that she is awesome).
Today I shared some of the highlights of Wixie, a multi-purpose presentation tool that is perfect for elementary students.

You can read my post here:

Thank you, Julie, for the chance to be a part of your awesome blog!