Call the Cops! #SOL19

 

screen shot 2019-01-08 at 7.39.10 am

“The Police were involved.” No teacher out of the building for a week-long PD institute wants to receive a text from their sub with those words in it. Especially when they are a Kindergarten teacher!

Here’s what went down.

  • Kindergarten boy asks to use hallway bathroom when classroom bathroom is occupied.
  • Said Kindergarten boy doesn’t return after reasonable amount of time.
  • Sub goes in search of said boy and can’t find anywhere.
  • When returning to classroom to tell co-teacher boy can’t be found, sub finds said boy hiding under coats in cubby area. Said boy find this hilarious. Sub does not.
  • Sub scolds boy and then hauls him to School Counselor’s office. Counselor is running the show while the Principal is with me at PD.
  • Counselor scolds boy. As she is sending sub and boy back to class, she spots School Safety Officer making his rounds and calls him over.
  • Safety Officer scolds boy and then sends him and sub back to class.
  • Mom and Dad aren’t amused when they learn of said child’s inappropriate and unsafe choice.
  • Said boy significantly scared within an inch of his not-quite-6-year-old self.

How was your Monday?

screen shot 2019-01-08 at 7.49.57 am

 

***********************************************

Many thanks to the crew at Two Writing Teachers, and the extended SOL community, for giving us the time, space, and encouragement to live the writerly life here each Tuesday. Won’t you join us?

screen-shot-2017-02-20-at-2-05-35-pm

Advertisements

#OneLittleWord #SOL19

Balloons

Happy New Year! The first day of the new year seems to be the perfect time to share my One Little Word (OLW) for 2019 and reflect on 2018’s word — write. (Click here to see a brief video of how a OLW can be a thread that weaves its way through life’s tapestry.)

WubcfwZqQguG4nscww6fog

Write I did! As much as I would have liked? No, but does anyone ever accomplish as much as they would hope? Enough to feel good about? Yes! A few highlights included:

  • keeping a daily writing notebook, special projects mini note books, and launching my first bullet journal specifically to capture and nurture ideas for future (or not!) use
  • participating in my first month-long February Daily Poem Project on Facebook, an ekphrastic poetry challenge spearheaded by author/poet Laura Shovan throughout the month
  • slicing daily in my second Slice of Life (SOL) Challenge hosted by the Two Writing Teachers blog, writing 31 straight daily posts
  • writing alongside (albeit virtually) author/poet Amy Ludwig VanDerwater during her National Poetry Month Project in April, writing and sharing a new poem every day, each highlighting a different poetic technique discussed in her brilliant Poems Are Teachers (Heinemann, 2017)

That was three straight months of daily writing, creating, and publishing. By May, I was exhausted, but strangely energized, so I also:

Now onto 2019’s word!

IMG_2528

2019 is going to be all about moving and moving forward, both body and mind. My husband and I have lots of fun walks and hikes planned, including a special trip in July. Santa brought us snowshoes, so we are just waiting for snow. And those InkJoy Gel pens (0.7mm, please) will keep moving forward, too, scribbling across notebook pages even more than in 2018. Promise!

Onto 2019! Let’s get a move on!

***********************************************

Many thanks to the crew at Two Writing Teachers, and the extended SOL community, for giving us the time, space, and encouragement to live the writerly life here each Tuesday. Won’t you join us?

screen-shot-2017-02-20-at-2-05-35-pm

Love Note #SOL

Today was one of those days. Come to think of it, yesterday was one of those days, too. When I arrived home this afternoon and reached into my pockets, as I do at the end of the every day, I pulled out a magical slip of paper. I admit in all of the chaos of the day, I had forgotten all about it.

Love Note

Earlier this morning, a very special First Grader, who was in my class last year, had paid her daily visit for a hello and a hug on her way down the hall to class. She dropped her backpack on the floor and said, “I have something for you, Mrs. Wyman. Let me find it.” And find it she did. Reading her special message and thinking about this “tiny” act of kindness made all the troubles of the day slip away.

 

***********************************************

Many thanks to the crew at Two Writing Teachers, and the extended SOL community, for giving us the time, space, and encouragement to live the writerly life here each Tuesday. Won’t you join us?

screen-shot-2017-02-20-at-2-05-35-pm

It Took a Village #SOL

It finally arrived! A few weeks ago my Principal ordered a standing workstation for me. I couldn’t wait for it to come. The old rolling computer cart I’ve had for years just isn’t working for my iMac, monitor, keyboard, external disk drive, and Ladybug document camera. Too much equipment and not enough space!

parts

When I opened the box there were so many parts. An IKEA-like nightmare! How could I possibly get this put together? And I have meetings every afternoon, so not a minute to spare. I needed help. Kindergarteners to the rescue! What better use of a Genius Hour than to work on this project together. We laid all the parts out and explored them together.

helpers

Quite a few students wanted to help and I had stiff competition, including the LEGO table and painting. I was truly honored they were curious and genuinely wanted to help. And they really were helpful! They held up bits and pieces as I began to insert part A into part B and on and on it went. One young man took it upon himself to say from time to time, “Quiet everyone. Mrs. Wyman is trying to concentrate!” I admit that was helpful at times.

table

After school, when it was nice and quiet, I put the finishing touches on. The floor was a mess, but I’d done it – with a little help, of course. It was dark out now, and my helpers had gone, but I really wanted to push through get it all set up.

computers on

Tah day! Mission Accomplished! I can’t wait for my helpers to see the finished product tomorrow morning. When they left, they didn’t know what it was for. Making memories, we were.

***********************************************

Many thanks to the crew at Two Writing Teachers, and the extended SOL community, for giving us the time, space, and encouragement to live the writerly life here each Tuesday. Won’t you join us?

screen-shot-2017-02-20-at-2-05-35-pm

Thanksgiving Table Traditions #SOL

It’s been a few years since we actually hosted Thanksgiving at our house, but every year my husband insists on cooking the turkey for my family — and the roast at Christmas, and the lamb at Easter. He’s fussy like that. Wants it cooked just so! I can’t complain. He gets up at the crack of dawn and does his thing while I sleep in. It works and boy does the house smell amazing!

When it comes to side dishes, there are two that are always on our family’s Thanksgiving table — my brussels sprouts and my Aunt Cindy’s fruit compote. I’ve been making the same Stout and Orange-Glazed Brussels Sprouts recipe since I first discovered it in Bon Appetit back in 1994. It sounds a little unusual, but is delicious. The combination of broth, Guinness, orange juice, butter, brown sugar, and pepper boils down to a delicious glaze that you saute the sprouts in. So good, you’ve got to try it! If you are not a fan of sprouts, try this and it’ll win you over. Promise!

Now onto the fruit compote. My Aunt Cindy has been gone for while now. We lost her –my dad’s kid sister — far too early from a brain aneurism when she was in the prime of life with two young boys. They are grown now, with children of their own, but every year we honor her legacy by enjoying her “famous” fruit compote, a concoction of canned pineapple, peaches, and pears swirled around in a bowl with cranberry sauce. It’s divine served with a dollop of fresh whipped cream, the perfect complement to the Thanksgiving bird.

What’s on your table, that you couldn’t live without?

***********************************************

Many thanks to the crew at Two Writing Teachers, and the extended SOL community, for giving us the time, space, and encouragement to live the writerly life here each Tuesday. Won’t you join us?

screen-shot-2017-02-20-at-2-05-35-pm

First Ever Data Meeting #SOL

“Data meetings? We’re doing data meetings?” “What’s a data meeting?” Yes, that was pretty much the range of responses from colleagues when our district announced late this past summer that we’d be embarking on a new journey — data meetings. One more thing. Ugh!

Last week I attended my first data meeting…ever. I know for some of you this is a regular routine, but in our district it’s something new. Sure, we’ve always assessed kids (have we ever!), discussed results in grade level meetings, and the odd Child Study Team meeting. We’ve implemented interventions here and there, but what’s different this time is that everyone is coming to the table. And I mean everyone. It’s no longer just the grade level teachers, an administrator or two, and a service provider that happens to be available after school. In these meetings we are looking at the whole child, not just one area of need. Our team consists of:

  • Principal (meeting convener)
  • School Adjustment Counselor
  • Team Chair/SPED Coordinator
  • Occupational Therapist
  • Physical Therapist
  • Speech/Language Pathologist
  • Math Curriculum Specialist
  • ELA Curriculum Specialist
  • Science/Social Studies Curriculum Specialist
  • Instructional Coach
  • Math Interventionists
  • ELA Interventionists
  • Grade Level Team Members

The team is enormous I know! Everyone on the team, apart from the grade level teachers, attended for the entire day — from 8:00 AM-4:00 PM. Grade level teams attended for 90-minute blocks, a team of substitutes moving from grade to grade providing classroom coverage. It really was quite something.

Prior to the meeting, each classroom teacher filled out a Google Sheet with required assessment data and additional information for each child we had concerns about. By the end of our team’s 90-minute block, we left with a plan for each child we had concerns about. In January, we’ll return to share updates and make new plans. The cycle will continue two more times as the school year progresses. Fingers crossed, we can make a difference and support students better than we have in the past.

Does your school conduct regular data meetings? I’d love to learn about your process!

***********************************************

Many thanks to the crew at Two Writing Teachers, and the extended SOL community, for giving us the time, space, and encouragement to live the writerly life here each Tuesday. Won’t you join us?

screen-shot-2017-02-20-at-2-05-35-pm

It Matters #SOL

Screen Shot 2018-11-06 at 3.11.56 PM

Please vote. Need I say more? What a privilege it is to have an opportunity to make a difference. So many are robbed of or denied this very same privilege the world over. I’ll never take this for granted.

***********************************************

Many thanks to the crew at Two Writing Teachers, and the extended SOL community, for giving us the time, space, and encouragement to live the writerly life here each Tuesday. Won’t you join us?

screen-shot-2017-02-20-at-2-05-35-pm