Saturday, January 28, 2012

Early Childhood Education and Prevention: Will Legislators wake up?

I am on a high horse this morning! I just finished reading several articles and I am needless to say a little miffed. Living in the state of South Carolina, we have always been behind everyone else in everything. Our education budget has been slashed to ribbons, the expectations grow higher and we have some of the toughest state standards to teach. There are those who think we do not do enough and there are those who praise us, but those of us in the trenches feel downtrodden, unappreciated, overworked, and confused as to what is really expected of us. THEN I read these two articles:

    Early Education a Crime-Fighting Weapon?

Large-scale early education linked to higher living standards and crime prevention 25 years later

I have been preaching that early childhood education and parent involvement in the early years was so important for years and when I say years, I am saying all of my 32 years of teaching (maybe less five for the first five years when I was growing as a teacher). I have watched the pendulum of education swing from one end to the other and yet never seen legislators or administrators stop it at a happy medium. When will we wake up and learn that reaching a young child and helping his/her parents know how to help him/her makes for a whole child and helps our society raise children who become successful, capable beings. Please read these two articles and pass them on to administrators, legislators, people of influence within your community. Let this be a wake-up call to others that "reach and teach them" young is so valuable to our communities, our states, our nation!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The 100th Day of School

Today was our 100th Day of school ! Phew! We made it this far and now to work hard and complete the other 80 days. It is hard to believe that it has been 100 days where does the time go! I wanted to share the 100th day collections that my wonders brought in. They did a wonderful job. So here they are and they are "wonder"ful!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

I am truly honored to have been nominated for the Fascination Award. Please vote for me!

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012

I'm a Fascinating blog!

Wow! I just had a most wonderful dinner cooked by my sweetie, Jeff and than as I sit down to read my email and scan over what to open first...I see that my blog has been nominated for this award, Most Fascinating blog award of 2011.

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I am amazed and honored and it was all because I wrote about Crayons and Crayon boxes, which was just a comment on diversity and how I want children to embrace it. You know after having had a holiday celebrating the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr.,  listening to his speech, "I have a Dream.." and seeing the posters and songs and ideas we as teachers use to teach diversity on this one week prior to his birthday, , do we just stop and think our work is done? Diversity is like that box of crayons and we need to keep reinforcing it everyday so that the dream can become truer, truer and finally TRUE!
Pleas vote for me

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Sunday, January 15, 2012

A linky party that shows how our days go as teachers. This sounds fun and it is super interesting to look at all the schedules of other teachers around the blogosphere.

Hook up with Adventures of a 6th Grade Teacher to join the linky party. So in that case here is how my day goes:

5:00-5:45: I awaken. I feed the two dogs and one cat. I stumble around and make coffee and let the animals out. Make a toasted bagel and stare blearily at the TV while I drink my coffee and eat my bagel. 
5:45-5:50: I sip more coffee and ruminate (yes, ruminate over how nice it would be to just sleep for another hour or more).
5:50-6:05: I get moving making sure everything is out for me to wear and shower.
6:05-6:25: dress, blowdry hair, put on makeup, check out appearance in mirror and awaken Jeff, my sweetie so he can get ready for his day. Now some days he awakens me with coffee and bagel and then I ruminate on "how lucky I am to have someone bring me breakfast in bed.
6:25-6:45: I have another cup of coffee and fill my thermos, grab and pack up everything.
6:45: In the car and leaving the driveway.
6:45-7:00: I am driving to work. It takes that long because in our little city, Central Ave. has now become the busiest road in the world as all the commuters head for their jobs in Charleston. And getting to turn out in that road is like taking your life in your hands!
7:00-7:05: Getting in school, signing in and unpacking
7:05-7:35: greeting kids at door, Making sure they eat at the round breakfast table, start their morning work and making sure everything is a "GO".
7:35-7:45: Morning show on the Smartboard, Review morning work, and get the wonders to the rug for Calendar and singing and dancing.
7:45-8:10- Calendar and Singing and dancing
8:10-8:40- Phonics
8:40-9:00- Phonics activities
9:00 -9:45: Go to Specials (YES!!!!)
9:45-10:00:Return to room, story read aloud, and bathroom ( because inevitably six or seven have to go at the same time)
10:00 -10:30: Writing
10:30-11:00: Grade level ( which our district's fancy word for Shared/Guided reading lesson, because we integrate Science and Social Studies at this time for Thematic learning)
11:00-11:10: get ready for lunch, line up and move on out toward the cafeteria and LUNCH
11:10-11:45: Lunch and lineup to go back and enter classroom ( yes we inhale our food haha).
11:45 - 12:30- Math and Math groups.
12:30-1:00: RECESS and snack
1:00- 1:50: Differentiated Groups (centers) and fluency groups.
1:50-2:00: Early buses and cleanup.
2:00: leave for buses and the wonders go home
2:15-4:00: chat, prepare, have meetings, and nosh on a snack and more coffee.
4:00- 4:15: heading home
4:15-4:30: let the animals out and they usually get a treat for being such good boys.
4:30-5:30: usually have a nap while I am watching TV or reading a novel.
5:30- Begin making dinner, chores, load some laundry, etc.
6:30 eating with my sweetie, Jeff and chatting about our day.
7:30-8:00: My best friend and I usually head out for Starbucks (they know us by name and we even got special cards from them at Christmas because we are their favorite customers).
8:30: doing work, folding clothes, playing on the computer, checking email and blogs and then about !0:00 heading to bed.
10:00-10:30: reading and SLEEEEEEEEP! (apparently lately the sleep fairy has been keeping me awake so I have felt extra groggy)

Then the party starts all over again the next morning.

So How's your day go? Link up with                                  and tell us about your day!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

My Core Teaching (Learning) Beliefs

I was reading a blog today, Mrs. Bainbridge's blog to be exact and she asked if we would state our beliefs about teaching. I am very passionate about education for several reasons. My parents instilled in me a love and thirst for knowledge through reading, through history, through any source available. My father was a minister and because he had not had the formal seminary training (although he had been to Columbia Bible College and a missionary in India planting churches) he often felt that his knowledge was not equivalent to his peers. The result was he would study words, their etymology, their history and he taught himself enough Greek and Hebrew so that he could glean more for his sermons as to the meaning of God's written word. My mother was an eclectic woman of many talents. She had a trained voice, was trained as a pianist, she had a degree in music, was a wonderful cook and also as a missionary with my father she ran an orphanage and ran a school for native Hindustani children. Both of my parents had a British education and could quote poetry from memory that they had learned as children. So with all this as my background and early life, I desired to know why, when, where, who at an early age. I devoured books as a child because the took me places and I gained an awesome amount of knowledge just from reading. My first choice in a career was not to be a teacher, but to be a lawyer. I happen-chanced on teaching, by starting a nursery for my father in his church and it was there that I saw the young child learning and discovering and I was smitten by teaching the young child.
 It is with all this in my upbringing, family life, and experience that I state my core beliefs about education:
1. I believe that everyone can learn.
2. I believe that everyone has an unalienable right to learn.
3. I believe that a teacher must teach the whole child, that is to say not just the brain, but the body, the emotions and the brain.
4. I believe that learning is exciting! It is like finding money in your wallet when you thought you were broke and that for me is an awesomely joyful experience.
5. I believe that learning one thing leads to a desire to know more and that the thirst for knowledge can really never be quenched.
6.I believe that learning is a group effort. Learning comes from the learners and the teacher.
7.I believe that everyone should be accountable in learning...the teacher, the child, the parents and the community.
8. I strongly believe that learning is empowering, evolving and exhilarating.

  So along with Christina at Mrs.Bainbridge's Class Blog, join us in listing your core beliefs about teaching, learning and education.