New Year - Great Expectations!
BLINK! We are nearly at the 1/2 way mark. We're halfway there? Halfway to fourth grade? Are you kidding me?
So, this is the thought I recently had. I can't believe how the days FLY. Thank you for being patient with me over the last couple of weeks. I hate that I have not blogged in so long. Here is the excuse: for the first time in YEARS it seems like I've been hit with every virus that has walked into the classroom. It all started at the end of November with a
pesky cold that turned out to be that awful upper respiratory thing, which was directly followed by Strep. I got WELL over vacation and then spent this past LONG weekend with the stomach bug. YUCK. Although I've said this more than once over the past month or so, I mean it THIS TIME when I say I'm done with being sick! REALLY!
Having been "away" for so long...we have a lot to catch up on. First, let me say, thank you for your kindness as all our lives were shaken by the unthinkable thing that occurred in an elementary school full of beautiful children in CT. The supportive emails I received and kind words helped me to get through that painful week. I was especially touched when I returned to school the Monday after to 23 beautiful children to teach. I had perfect attendance! The fact that you trusted me with your children after such a difficult weekend meant so much. As a parent myself, I know how difficult it was to put my own children on the bus. Thank you!
Thank you, too, for the generous
expressions of thanks you showered me with over the holidays. You know me so well! We have enjoyed shopping at Barnes and Noble, warming ourselves with cocoa and coffee at Dunkins, stopping by Target (such fun!), and ordering a few new books for the classroom at Amazon. I LOVE the Alex and Ani bracelets. Thanks for keeping this old lady hip! I didn't even know these trendy, cute, bracelets existed! Oh, and Charlie, our newest family member, loved his chew toy! Thank you from the bottom of my heart!
Onto the business at hand...show business in Brigham Theatre! I'm sure you've noticed lots of changes in the New Year. The biggest change is a greater shift in responsibility from teacher/parent to student. Now that we're midway through the school year, I'm sure your student has a routine down and things are moving along pretty smoothly in your homes. I hope that this routine involves nightly reading and at LEAST weekly opportunities to write plus healthy doses of IXL. I've added in the practicing of multiplication facts and cursive writing to boot. Although these additions may cause a little hiccup at first, I know that the students are up for this challenge.
The students are doing a SUPER job memorizing their math facts so far! This extra work will pay HUGE dividends as they move through elementary school and middle school. Trust me! Also, the cursive is coming along beautifully. Please insist on a proper pencil grasp. Changing to a correct grip now will make middle school writing much easier. Kids will say they HATE to write in middle school when what they really mean is that they don't like to write because it makes their hands hurt. The correct grasp makes all the difference. Initially, there were so many poor grips in the room. We've worked
hard to correct this. Please stay on your student to grasp correctly until the correct grip becomes a good habit.
Finally, I'm getting to the business of show biz! We have another musical coming up. I have no idea how we'll pull
this off but, we'll be performing "Vacation on Mars" for you on February 14th at 10AM. Looking ahead, I had to schedule it sooner than later. I definitely want to get it in during the second term and waiting much longer would run us into MCAS crunch time. I know the students will turn up BIG for this performance just like they did in their debut!
Speaking of MCAS...
No worries, no stress! I am doing everything I can to prepare the students by diligently teaching the third grade standards. I am pleased with the
progress all students are making. This preparation + some very good test taking strategy instruction and I know they'll shine! I promise, I'll devote a whole
blog to the MCAS test in a couple of weeks, but really, NO WORRIES!
Thanks for all you do in your homes to support the work I do in the classroom. The students would NEVER be making this kind of progress without your help. I wish you all the best in the New Year!
New photos in "Scenes from the Theatre" is my goal for the end of the week. Check back soon!
Putting students center stage for 18 years