Starting Overs

Starting over. Nobody likes do it. But unfortunately (or fortunately) we all do at one point in our life or another.  Starting over seems to be a theme in our lives lately. Maybe its our age, or the season of our lives, but whatever the reason starting over is what the theme has become in my family this year.
Its not something I mind too much or become worried about. Maybe its the teacher in me that acknowledges and welcomes the chance to start over. Its a time to try again or sometimes try something wholly different. Ive become accustomed to starting lesson plans over. I often start over with new teaching skills and strategies. I sometimes even completely start over from the very (or new beginning) the next day when things dont go as well as Id hoped.
We have to. As teachers if we see our kiddos struggling or trying to grasp a concept we dont have the luxury of saying oh well. We start again. We find that method or thing that will help the kiddos understand and get what they need to, sometimes its in one or two tries, sometimes its in twenty.
I think starting over gives us a chance to rewrite us. It gives us a chance to put on the slate of our composition the things we hope to be, and then decide what we need to show to others. It gives us that fresh new blank start to a whole new beginning.
Summer is that welcomed time before starting over. Its my time to reflect and relive the things that worked and the things that didnt. It gives me the chance to sort out in my mind and on paper how I want my new beginning, my fresh start of a new school season to play out. Sometimes Donnie will look at me and ask whats wrong? He says I look as though Im mad or looking through him. What he doesnt realize is Im replaying the moments in my school year that I want to give a fresh start to next year. Its not that Im not listening to him-Im just starting over in my mind the school year I just left behind. J How do I explain that??
This year everyone in my family has had a taste at starting over. My son and daughter in law both moved to exciting new jobs. My daughter moved to a new state and a new teaching job, her boyfriend graduated college and started a new job. And Donnie lost his job of twenty plus years and started a new one. Thats a lot of change. Thats a lot of new pages to fill up and begin again. Thats a lot of starting overs.
Soon itll be my turn to start over with a new group of kiddos and a bucket full of ideas Ive been turning over in my mind.  

I can hardly wait. 

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Time To Make The Donuts!

Do you do donut math?
Do you know about donut math?
Am I the last to know about donut math?
I read about this somewhere the other day for multiplication fluency. But I cannot remember whereso I promise I am not trying to steal anyone’s thunderor donuts. 
So if this is your idea please say so! I’d like to thank you.
The teacher I read about drew two donuts on the board. In the “holes” she/he put a number. On the donut itself she/he wrote some random (or maybe not so random) numbers. The students then came up two at a time and raced to find the product of the two numbers. 
Brilliant I tell you.
So I thought why not addition! And subtraction. And money. Really anything could work. I tried it last week by just drawing the donuts on the board and the kids L-O-V-E-D it. They asked each day after that when we could do “donut math” again.
I decided instead of on the whiteboard it work better for me as a center. 
So tonight I am making donuts.
I bought some small cheapo paper plates at the store. I got two different colors of sharpie and wa-la. Donuts.
I decided I would use one color for subtraction and one for addition for better housekeeping and so the kiddos could easily know which is which. 
I’m going to have them write the answers on our little dry erase boards and work in pairs so they can check each other and self-check. I may even throw in a bag of mini donuts as a treat when then finish the center!
So off I go to make the donuts! 

Have a super week Y'all!


Among All The Coughiness and Snores

Today was our first day back to school with kids. Tired? Yep. Beyond tired. The kids were great. But they too were beyond tired. And bless their hearts, sick. Almost every one of them told about being sick over the break. 
As they coughed. On me. 
I tried. Really I did. I was sympathetic and said “I’m sorry” as I quickly directed them back to their seats. Away from me.
One poor little guy even feel asleep during my read aloud. 
And come on I’m a pretty fun reader. 
But we had to stop. 
Because he was sleeping. 
And snoring. 
Poor kid. 
I was so jealous.
So today was the first day back with kids and it was c-o-l-d. 21 degrees cold. Last week it was in the 60’s. Monday it was 69! But noooo not the day we come back it was 21 and we all know what that means. Inside recess. Yay more time to spread their coughy germs. Poor kids. Poor teacher.
But through all the coughiness and all the I’m tireds. I have to say I was glad to be back. I missed my kiddos. They make me smile every day. I was even blessed with a new kiddo today who looks to have just as much cuteness as my other kiddos.
 January to me is the month of recognition. It’s when I begin to recognize who’s starting to move away from me and into the league of “a big kid,” and who might still be a little hesitant and need just a few more weeks of extra support and guidance.
I’m always proud of those kiddos who are soaring to new heights. But between you and me I kinda like that extra time I get with my not yet ready ones. I tell you I am beyond blessed this year. And I am not ready to turn loose of a single one of my chicks whether they are ready to soar, or still need my protective arms.
If today was your first day back I hope it was quick and uneventful. If it’s tomorrow, I wish you warm weather, outside recess, and no coughiness or snoring!
See ya soon! 

Gathering My Thoughts

Where has the blogging world gone? Where have I gone? I can’t believe the last blog post for me was in July of 2015! What happened to me? What happened to my desire to write and connect with all the great blogging friends I had found through the years.
I only have one explanation. I DUNNO! 
Really I have no idea what happened to my drive and desire to write/blog. I may have run out those creative juices I hoped I was WOWING the blogging world with.  I may have felt I paled in comparison to all those amazing teachers and bloggers that seem to have it all together. It could have been that life just got busy. Or maybe it was the onset of menopause and all the “I hate the world” that entails.nah couldn’t have been that.
Maybe it was that Tuesday nights were now spent glued to the couch watching HGTV and Chip and Joanna! (That’s probably it). Maybe it was because I felt all the great bloggy topics were already out there. Maybe it was because my laptop was a whisper away from going haywire all year.  
Or maybe I just felt no one cared. No one read or responded or commiserated with my woes and tribulations of the teaching/living world.
Well wha wha wha. That is not why I started blogging. I started it for me. For my outlet. Not for your comments or responses. I wrote for me. And so I choose once again to write for me. My one indulgence (ok besides cookies, pie, and chips and dipoh and watching Fixer Upper). Writing.
This past year brought many changes and 2017 is looking to hold a few more. I can hardly wait. They won’t be all bad, nor will they all be good. But they will be changes. Life changing- changes. And I will have the avenue to feed them, mourn them, and celebrate them, here. I will cultivate them and then GATHER what I need to move on, even if it means planting a new way of living, and new horizon to start from.
2017 should be an adventure to say the least! Want to come along for the ride?
My one little word for 2017 is “gather.” I hope you have found yours and it makes your year filled with love, hope and harmony, and that your friends and family always gather around you to make your days complete.  

See you soon Bloggy friends! Except on Tuesdays those are saved for Chip and JoJo! J