Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Happy Halloween!

This was my first Halloween as a teacher, I was in a short practicum last Halloween but I didn't dress up and it just wasn't the same. What a great day. Aside from the kids being off the wall it was alot of fun. All my kids were dressed up, they looked so cute. I had everything from pirates to witches to Ninja Turtles to princess' and bunnies. I decided to go as King Lang today. Most of the teachers at our school went all out and that made it so much more memorable. I had the kids address me as "your majesty", "your highness", or "your Royal highness", which they loved. They were bowing and curtseying (is that a word) to me all day. The Grade 5's did an awesome job of a spooky Halloween storytelling presentation in the gym for the primary students (you should have seen some of the K's, they were adorable). I had some parents bring cupcakes, fruit, juice etc. and we watched "Monster House" in the afternoon, which was a nice way to calm them down alittle bit. I ended the day with a scary story with the lights down low and in my scariest voice. It ended in me yelling out "I'VE GOT YOU" and grabbing a child sitting near me. They all screamed and then laughed hysterically for about 5 min. Tomorrow is going to nuts with them all on sugar highs. Wish me luck.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Why We Love Kids

I was driving with my three young children one warm summer evening when a woman in the convertible ahead of us stood up and waved. She was stark naked! As I was reeling from the shock, I heard my 5-year-old shout from the back seat, "Mom! That lady isn't wearing a seat belt!"

On the first day of school, a first-grader handed his teacher a note from his mother. The note read, "The opinions expressed by this child are not necessarily those of his parents."

A woman was trying hard to get the ketchup out of the jar. During her struggle the phone rang so she asked her 4-year-old daughter to answer the phone. "Mommy can't come to the phone to talk to you right now. She's hitting the bottle."

A little boy got lost at the YMCA and found himself in the women's locker room. When he was spotted, the room burst into shrieks, with ladies grabbing towels and running for cover. The little boy watched in amazement and then asked, "What's the matter, haven't you ever seen a little boy before?"

5) POLICE # 1
While taking a routine vandalism report at an elementary school, I was interrupted by a little girl about 6 years old. Looking up and down at my uniform, she asked, "Are you a cop?" "Yes," I answered and continued writing the report. "My mother said if I ever needed help I should ask the police. Is that right?" "Yes, that's right," I told her. "Well, then," she said as she extended her foot toward me, "would you please tie my shoe?"

6) POLICE # 2
It was the end of the day when I parked my police van in front of the station. As I gathered my equipment, my K-9 partner, Jake, was barking, and I saw a little boy staring in at me "Is that a dog you got back there?" he asked. "It sure is," I replied. Puzzled, the boy looked at me and then towards the back of the van. Finally he said, "What'd he do?"

While working for an organization that delivers lunches to elderly shut-ins, I used to take my 4-year-old daughter on my afternoon rounds. She was unfailingly intrigued by the various appliances of old age, particularly the canes, walkers and wheelchairs. One day I found her staring at a pair of false teeth soaking in a glass. As I braced myself for the inevitable barrage of questions, she merely turned and whispered, "The tooth fairy will never believe this!"

A little girl was watching her parents dress for a party. When she saw her dad donning his tuxedo, she warned, "Daddy, you shouldn't wear that suit." "And why not, darling?" "You know that it always gives you a headache the next morning. "

While walking along the sidewalk in front of his church, our minister heard the intoning of a prayer that nearly made his collar wilt. Apparently, his 5-year-old son and his playmates had found a dead robin. Feeling that proper burial should be performed, they had secured a small box and cotton batting, then dug a hole and made ready for the disposal of the deceased. The minister's son was chosen to say the appropriate prayers and with sonorous dignity intoned his version of what he thought his father always said: "Glory be unto the Faaather, and unto the Sonnn, and into the hole he goooes."

A little girl had just finished her first week of school. "I'm just wasting my time," she said to her mother. "I can't read, I can't write and they won't let me talk!"

A little boy opened the big family bible. He was fascinated as he fingered through the old pages. Suddenly, something fell out of the Bible. He picked up the object and looked at it. What he saw was an old leaf that had been pressed in between the pages. "Mama, look what I found," the boy called out. "What have you got there, dear?" With astonishment in the young boy's voice, he answered, "I think it's Adam's underwear."

First Snowfall

This week we had our first snowfall. It started in the morning and by about 10:00 we had quite alot on the ground. I had the curtains slightly drawn so you couldn't really see how much was out there until one boy, who happened to be sharpening his pencil cried out in glee "Wow look how much snow!" Well you can imagine what happened. Every child in the room ran to an available window to peer out at the carpet of white exclaiming their excitement. It was still about a half an hour to recess but there was little chance of getting any work out of them, they were literally bouncing in their seats waiting for the bell. Oh to be in Grade 2 again and get so excited and full of wonder about something like snow falling on the ground. I was on duty and it was nice to see the smiles and fun all the kids were having, even the intermediate kids who try to act so grown up all the time. I must admit it even brought the kid out in me as some of my students coaxed me into helping them push a gigantic ball of snow along the ground. Winter has come early this year. That snow was gone by the end of the day but it is snowing again today and covering everything in white.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Parent-Teacher Interviews

This last week our school had three early dismisal days so that we could schedule parent-teacher interviews. On Monday at lunch, just before my first was scheduled the teachers in the staffroom thought it would be funny if they retold stories of their worst parent-teacher interactions. Even though I had spent the whole weekend preparing, going through each child's file and writing notes about areas I wanted to talk about, I was pretty nervous. Luckily I had only one interview on Monday, a parent who I had met before at the open house who couldn't make it to the scheduled interviews on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. It went really well and this gave me some confidence going into the next three days. Thankfully no parent challenged anything that I said, even when I expressed concerns about some children and suggesting I refer them to Learning Assistance. I kind of expected some reluctance or hostility but all parents were supportive of me and thought these recommendations would ultimately benefit their child.

On Friday after those stressfull three days we had a Non Instructional Day, which was nice. There wasn't many Pro-D workshops or seminars scheduled so most of the teachers at our school came and planned, did work in their classroom, or went through some of the professional resources in our library. It was kind of relaxed, we all went out for a nice lunch, and I got alot of work done. I've been meaning to start planning my science unit but I've never had the time. For me social studies was more important to get started right away, so it was nice to have time to work on that. I want to be able to report on both for first term report cards, which is the next big stressor. They are due at the end of November.

Because of the NID and all the planning I got done on Friday I had the first weekend where I was able to relax and not have to come into school and get work done. Yesterday, Steph and I went out for lunch and bought my Halloween costume (more on that in future posts, Steph said she won't let me get away without posting a picture on my blog) and today I went and caught a movie I was looking forward to seeing. I couldn't drag Steph to go see the World War II epic "Flags of Our Fathers" so I went by myself (which I really don't see the big deal in, Steph couldn't believe it, and I seem to remember a friend who said she would never be caught dead going to see a movie by herself). Anyway it was an awesome movie and I'm glad I went. The battle scenes were so realistic and there was lots of great shots from the decks of the massive battleships shelling the island of Iwa Jima and from the cockpits of Navy Corsairs strafing Japanese pill boxes and machine gun nests.

Anyway, back to work tomorrow for a full week, which will seem long after two short weeks in a row, but Remembrance Day is coming soon.

Friday, October 06, 2006

NHL Hockey's Back!

I am so happy that NHL hockey is back on the air. I watched two games on Wednesday, two yesterday, and then the game I was most looking forward to, my Canadiens season opener against Buffalo. It was a really exciting game, with the additions of Samsonov and Niinima the Canadiens have really added alot of speed to an already fast line-up and Buffalo with Briere and Affineganov were lightning quick. It was a real back and forth game in which the Habs were winning 4-2 but then gave up two goals in the third to force OT and lost in a heartbreaking shoot-out. Oh well they still get a point. What a game it will be tomorrow against the Leafs on Hockey Night in Canada.

Hockey back on TV is probably something I don't need, as it provides a real distraction from all the work and planning I should be doing. I am happy to say I have the fourth week under my belt and am feeling pretty good about everything (right now, but parent-teacher interviews are coming up on the 17th to 19th and I'm nervous about that, I know I already did an open house but that was alot more informal). Other than that not much else going on. It has sure gotten cold here all of a sudden -5 to -8 at night, which means scraping my windshield every morning. It won't be long until we get that first snowfall, and guess what I found out today. Who do you think is responsible for shovelling the snow off the steps and clearing a path to my portable in the mornings before school in the winter? I really could'nt believe that and might have to check with some other people to make sure this isn't someone trying to get out of some work they should be doing (might as well see if the new guy is stupid enough to do it).