What Would You Do?

Bully, bully, bully. Bullies are everywhere it seems these days. In our professional development. In our reading. In our classrooms. They are everywhere, and we are ultra-aware of their presence. We deal with them. We counsel them. We punish them. We intervene on their behalf. We develop policy for the bullies and because of the bullies. And if we’re honest we even find ourselves wanting to bully them, just to show them. So they know it’s not ok.
But then it happens. AN actual bullying event. In your classroom. With your kids. And all the professional development, all the training, all the reading, and all the policies feel useless. And inadequate to deal with what has happened.
The parents become involved. The bully’s parents deny and the victim’s parents cry. And you cry. And feel helpless and lost all over again. How could this happen on your watch? How could you not catch it, prevent it? How can you make it right? Who do you protect the child that was hurt, the parents that are outraged or the now “outted” bully that is still just a child. 
What does the policy say about that? What do the experts know about this child and the life he lives? What do you say to both sets of parents who love their children just the same?
They are both victims. Both products of their environments. One sweet and kind hearted, but in his way so is the other. One given his every wish, and praised each day for his accomplishments. The other so desperate for a friend and understanding he battles his way through every day. One that was given love from day one. The other found his love at the back of a hand.
We never learn what to do for the victims of bullies. We never understand that the bullies are victims too.    

Knock Knock Who's Still There??

I really want to write, really I do. I think about it all the time. I think I should write this. Or maybe this. Oh I know I’ll write about that. And then I don’t. I don’t know why. Really I don’t I have time. I have ideas (sorta). I just haven’t. I have probably been expelled from the blogging community. But that is ok. I can start over. Sometimes starting over is fun. That’s what I’ll do I’ll begin againagainJ.
Hello my name is Tammy and I teach first nope second grade this year. And all I have to say about that is itttttttssssss harrrrrddddd. Can you hear the whine? I don’t mean it’s hard in the way first grade is hard because there is so much to get through AND teach the kiddos to read. I mean it is hard in the way that the kids areare.areolder? Different? Less lovey? Less needy? Yes that’s it. They just don’t need ME as much L. I KNOW! It is SO hard!
Really I have to say it is kind of refreshing to let them go earlier than you do in first grade. Sometimes. It’s exciting to watch them do more (especially knowing I was part of what got them there). It’s rewarding to have them take the lead on many things.
This month I am giving them their chance at being the teacher. Because you know they ALL want to be the teacher. I have given them a few subjects to choose from to research and “teach.” I have been so impressed! They have done an amazing job. We will be doing it again next month with a few Christmasy topics. It should be fun!

I’ll leave you with a few photos of my room this year. This is another change that I am in love with. I have been in this room before. Ten years ago. I hope I don’t have to move for another ten!

I have learned that the Expo Neon markers make for great writing on my windows. The fire marshal came early this year and was quite picky, so anchor charts are at a minimum, so my windows have become my anchor charts! Those and my super cool blackboard cupboards!

Sorry I’ve been gone so long. I will try to do better!