The heat has kept us indoors during the day and everyone was becoming a bit antsy. So, my family and I hit the road. We had no particular destination in mind – just a map, a Tom-Tom (we call it “Sam” because it sounds like Yosemite Sam), and a list of ghost towns. The cooler was packed with bottled water, tea, and sandwich fixings. The kids had books and MP4 players that kept them occupied in between the bouts of never-ending slug-a-bug. The excitement was palpable.
We cruised down dirt roads and winding roads and painfully narrow roads. We took the kids to see the Regency suspension bridge and scared the daylights out of them. A little more than halfway across we met an oncoming car. For those of you who have not yet seen this bridge, let me tell you two cars will not fit on that bridge. The oncoming car backed up, and we made it across. At this point my youngest daughter exclaimed breathlessly, “I had my eyes closed over the whole first half of that bridge!” In response, my husband immediately quipped, “Me, too!” much to the dismay of the children.
I’ve learned much from my children. There are things I have learned just since this summer began. It’s quite amazing, actually, the little tidbits you can pick up from kids. I thought I would share some of these little gems with you.
1. “Oh, my gosh.” Believe it or not that phrase is incorrect. Based on my children’s use of this phrase, I’ve been saying it wrong all my life. Here is how it should be used:
Young son: “Mom, can I have a little more?”
Me: “Sure.” (put barely a bite more on the plate) “How’s that?”
“The future belongs to people who see possibilities before they become obvious.” -Ted Levitt
Educators at all levels are those who see the possibilities. We see the success in students who often do not see it in themselves. We see the possibilities – the strengths and potential. Does that mean the future belongs to us? I’m not sure about that, but I do believe educators are crucial in the nurturing of those to whom the future does belong.
I had planned an article with some funny signs of summer – like the volume on teachers’ cell phones turned up full blast after a year of silent ringers. However, I saw this quote and received some disappointing news of my own. So here I am, reminding myself and sharing with you the idea that we should always look for the possibilities.
Well, the 2010-2011 school year has ended. The hallways are empty, the lockers are echoing, and the teachers are….working?? What??? What about summers off? There are many people still in the schools – administrators, custodians, cafeteria crews, and teachers. Summer school is in session – along with all the various camps that provide students with extra opportunities. There are tennis camps, football camps, volleyball – on our campus this year we have a computer camp! This is the first year we’ve done this, and our camp is small – but we are having a great time!
Ok. I have to tell you…those little stools in the school cafeteria are not made for sitting on for hours at a time. Just saying. For the 15 minutes it usually takes a student to inhale -er - eat lunch they are fine. For the long haul, however, it is a different story. Teachers, luckily, are flexible and able to find ways around everything.
You see, this week many teachers from the district are meeting for additional training in the use of our online curriculum. Where are we meeting? In the high school cafeteria. Trust me when I tell you those little stools are not good on the back or the hindquarters! Luckily, teachers are a creative breed – able to solve problems and overcome obstacles in a single bound!
It may come as a surprise to some, but teachers are generally just as excited for that last bell to ring as the students. While we wave our students off, sniffling and hoping for their every success in the future, in the back of our minds remains one thought….SUMMER!
Summertime for teachers is a chance to catch up – on housework, reading, learning, resting, playing – and any number of things we don’t have time for during the school year.
The last week of school is traditionally filled with a flurry of paperwork, last minute grades, awards, celebrations, and cleaning. This year has been no different. We watch our students for the last time, knowing they are on to bigger and better things. Leaving sixth grade means entering a whole new world of education – increased responsibility, increased opportunities – and we are very excited to see our students embark on this journey.
The word “technology”, when used in conjunction with “education”, conjures up images of laptops, desktop computers, and other familiar tools. However, there are more types of technology to be taken advantage of. Cell phones, mP3 devices, and so on. Recently, my students got to experiment with and use another type of technology – the hand held GPS.
As parents, we are often trying to find things to do with our families that are affordable and fun. Geocaching is one of those things. We took our kids geocaching and had a blast. We ended up at a fort, and took the tour. We saw an old cemetery and read some amazing epitaphs. We climbed nature trails and saw some awesome sights. All it cost us was time and a little gas. It was worth it for the adventure we found.
Well, here we are in May. The last month of school has arrived to the relief and excitement of students and teachers alike. However, there is an ailment that overtakes students in this month, and I am hoping that this article will help bring it to light. It is whispered about, but I think it is time to bring it out into the open.
That disease is called Mayersummeritis (aka “May is here and summer is coming”). This disease is not fatal to anything except student grades and teacher sanity. The illness lasts a month, and there is no known cure. Luckily, there are some symptoms to watch for and ways to help prevent this dreaded disease. With everyone’s help, the effects of this ailment can be minimized and help to ensure a pleasant last month of school.
You know, as a parent and an educator I often find myself saying things I never in a million years could have imagined myself saying. For example, as a mom, counting has become a bad thing. “Don’t make me start counting.” Ooh. Scary. On being asked why…”Because I said so.” On being asked when…”When I am good and ready.”
Well, you get the idea. There are just some things we all swore we’d never say when we had kids. Then, next thing you know those very words are spilling out and you find yourself looking around to see if your mom or dad are hiding someplace and are practicing ventriloquism.
As a teacher, there are some things you just can’t imagine. I mean, literally cannot imagine. Then when you have said it, you have to just sort of stop and say to yourself, “Huh?” I had one of those “Huh?” moments last week in my classroom.