Friday, December 13, 2013

3 and 1/2 days

Yes that's right just 3 1/2 more days until Christmas break! I can not believe how fast this first semester has gone by although this past week seems to have been the longest.:) In just the last few weeks, I have seen my sweeties grow up so much. It is amazing how that seems to happen this time of the year in Kindergarten and even more so after Christmas break.
Next week we will be busy with Christmas activities- a school trip to the theatre to see Santa Buddies, a special animal show at school, the 2nd grade Christmas program, our Polar  Express pajama day, and last but not least our Christmas party on Thursday morning.
We have been busy making Christmas ornaments, reading lots of Christmas books along with Reading, Math and finishing up 3rd six weeks assessments.
I have been thinking a lot lately about how we are assessing these poor kids all the time. If it's not one kind of test,it's another. I can't help but worry about those kids who are struggling and some of them are aware that they are not performing as well as other kids in their class. I worry that these children are going to get to where they don't want to come to school, have poor self esteem and will begin acting out because of the pressure we are putting on them to perform at levels that some of them are simply not ready to. When I think about these things, it reminds me that I need to spend time focusing on each child and making sure that they don't start feeling this way. If I spend more time focusing on an assessment score than I do a child's heart then I have lost all perspective as a teacher.
As far as my own three k's they are all doing well. Kirk finished his first semester of college and is back home for Christmas break. Kara continues to stay busy with school, club activities and babysitting. She was sad that the St. Jude half marathon in Memphis that she trained for months for had to be cancelled last weekend due to the ice. She is planning on doing a half marathon in the spring that will also benefit St. Jude. Kali seems to have been overloaded the last few weeks with school work at night. Another reminder that I am blessed to have children who do well in school and to be patient and understanding with those students who it doesn't come so easy to.
I hope that all of you are looking forward to a wonderful Christmas break and I hope it allows you lots of time to spend with your own families because as teachers I feel that we often spend more time devoting our time to other people's children than our own.
Just a reminder that I write this blog as a journal for me to always have of  my life as a mother, a wife, a teacher and a child of God. I am not trying to glorify my life as any of these things. What I choose to do is focus on the good in all of us-my students and my own family and friends. We all face daily struggles at work and sometimes home that I may express to others on a personal confidential basis but I would never put anything on here regarding students or family and friends for all to read. Just another reminder to myself to seek out the good in all of us as I hope you will in me. If you take the time to read my blog via Facebook,then take the time to click follow me on my blog because sometimes I don't share it on Facebook.:) You can sign up to receive an email notification when I make a new post. God Bless you and yours!!!

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Cotton gin, Thanksgiving and Christmas Oh My!!!!

Woo hoo! We had a wonderful Thanksgiving feast last Tuesday in our class and I had a wonderful break with my family!!! It just went too dog gone fast. It does help though knowing that Christmas break is just around the corner.:) We will hit the ground running tomorrow to make sure we finish up all the standards addressed during this six weeks so that we can get those assessed. Of course, I stated pulling out all my Christmas books to take and get started reading on at school. To say I have a lot is an understatement!!!
The Monday before Thanksgiving break our kindergarten classes toured the cotton gin in McLemoresville, TN. My brother is the owner there as well as a cotton farmer. The gin has been in our family for MANY years. Thankful for my brother and all of our farmers. :) As I said, our Thanksgiving feast went off great! I had lots of compliments on how well the students were behaved and that always makes me happy to hear that.:) Once again, I have been blessed with a class of sweeties and I'm so proud of the progress they have made this year.
Kara is participating in the St. Jude half marathon this Saturday in Memphis so Kali and I are going down with her the night before. Marty has to leave Thursday morning and stay through Sunday at Nashville for guard duty. Kirk will come home and help hold the fort down.:)
In closing, I'll leave you with my thoughts that I posted on my Facebook status:
Every year I look at Christmas trees in the stores and of course I have seen lots of pics on Facebook and it seems that many of the trees seem to have a theme to them. I caught myself the other day saying "my tree is nothing fancy it's just simple with lights and ornaments that we have collected through the years." I thought about that and realized in some ways that's true because it's not fancy in the likes that you would ever see one like it in a store display but it represents our family and that makes it special. Marty and I married on December 18, 1993-that's right almost 20 years in the books. and one of my wedding showers was a Christmas decoration/ornament one so many of the ornaments date back to then and are even engraved with our wedding date. Each child has their own collection of ornaments from their first Christmas to all the ones we made at home or made at school through the years. There are ornaments from various countries and favorite vacation spots that we traveled to or Marty traveled to on his deployments/guard duties. There are ornaments commemorating the year Marty was away and spent Christmas in Kosovo. We have ornaments from Ft. Campbell representing the years he served there while we were dating and even some we got from the cruise ship on our honeymoon. Many of the ornaments have been given to me through the years by my students. There are ornaments for our dogs that we love and others we have loved and lost representing the joy they have brought us. There are ornaments from Ms. Elizabeth Radford because each year she would give the kids an ornament. Last, there is an ornament from the Christmas of 1985. We never dreamed that would be the last year that my daddy would spend Christmas here with us. So my tree does have a theme and it's called "our lives"-by no means fancy but definitely a wonderful and blessed life!!! I pray that as you decorate your tree this year that you too are reminded of the love of family, special memories from the past and the precious memories of the loved ones who are celebrating Christmas in heaven!!!!