Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Field Trip!

Today was the fourth grade's traditional field trip to the Washington State Corn Maze. A good time was had by (almost) all. Farajan was disappointed we couldn't navigate the hay bale maze as well: an unfortunate glass-half-empty girl. But, on the almost completely full side, we spent upwards of an hour deliriously lost in a field of corn manicured to the shape of our beloved state, had lunch with Creamsicles for dessert, saw the Pig Race (funny), the Duck Race (even funnier), and picked the pumpkin of our dreams from the pumpkin patch...oh, and rode home in a school bus singing songs and playing hand games, arriving back at school just in time for recess.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Friday Night

I’ve never been much of a boozehound,
But I really like my liquor:

Tequila straight,
With a beer chaser,
Every Friday Night.

Saturday morning is when I have
Second thoughts.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Indoor Recess

Raining like an old dog outside at noon. Indoor recess: teacher's bane and students' change of pace. Combine that with a full moon. Kind of crazy. We talked about it, the kids and me, at the end of the day. Agreed that next time it would be helpful if we got up and ran in place, did calisthenics.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Ipod Wisdom

Oh, am I ever full of life here
On the health club’s upright cycle,
Facing a bank of TVs silently presenting
College football games.

Ipod is in place, pumping
Bob Dylan into my ear.

“Forever Young!” Bob howls, and,
Head bobbing, my legs churn faster.
Up the burned calories!
Up the heart rate!

“Forever Young!’ Bob Dylan yowls, and
I agree with the sentiment, humping
Legs, heart, hands beating time,
Flailing my upright cycle.

The Ipod shuffles to its
Next random selection:

And the "random selection" is? Check out That Oughta See Us Out blog. Or better yet, finish the poem yourself and send it in as a comment.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

First Day of School, 2010

This is the gist of the Rah-Rah speech I gave this morning to my 31 new Fourth graders:

Is everyone the same height?

Does everyone wear the same size shoe?

Does everyone learn the same way?

No, of course not. In none of those things are we all alike.

Some people are really fast at their basic math facts. Some can already read chapter books that are 300 pages long. Some draw beautiful pictures.

No two people are the same. But everyone belongs.

In this classroom we have a learning community.

A learning community is a place where everyone belongs—that’s the community part—and where everyone is trying to do their best—the learning part.

You might do your best at multiplication facts by learning strategies for finding the products, and by practicing with flash cards.

You might do your best at being a better writer by learning how to make a complete sentence, and how to organize what you write so it is more effective.

Whatever you are trying to learn, whether it’s math or writing or soccer or science, in order to do your best in our learning community there are five things you must do, and our success will be guaranteed:

  3. TRY