Showing posts from June, 2013

Friday Favorites

Took a couple of weeks off--not because I didn't have any favorites, I just didn't have time to write a post! Lake time has been jammed packed. So Friday Favorites this week is all about the lake... 1. Our cabin.... Which is actually an old camper with an addition. It has two small bedrooms, a small kitchen/dining area and one long addition. In the addition we have added a sleeper sofa and a futon, so we have a little more sleeping space when the boys and their families come to the lake. They have both come at the same time, with their dogs, and somehow, we make it work. 2. Quiet Mornings...... A long summer day, with nothing that has to be done. The possibilities are endless. Read a book, swim,  a little golf with friends, walks with Chloe, watching paint dry. It could all happen. 3. My view from the deck... 4. Special Moments with family... This is our youngest son and his daughter dancing to "Hey Baby! (Won't You Be My Girl?)"  We ge

Confession of a Connected Teacher

Confession Time I have not left school behind this summer. Usually I can. Usually I don't think about school until mid-July or even the beginning of August. Yesterday, I peeked at my class lists for next year. I looked at names, at combinations of kids. I look forward to some and dread others. I'm planning lessons in my head all the time (I do need to get them on the computer!) I'm reading professional books and participating in Twitter chats like it's my day job (which it is, but not in the summer!) Oh, I'm doing summer things I've golfed Gone to concerts Watched the sun set Spent time with friends Visited my family Spent time with 1/2 the grandkids Read books But I feel like I'm not really present, like it's a weekend and I go back to work on Monday. Maybe all this connectedness isn't a good thing. I need to find some balance.


One of things I promised myself after attending FlipCon13 in Stillwater, Minnesota, was that I would be more intentional on reflecting and sharing my flipping journey. In their final "chat" with us, Aaron Sams and Jonathan Bergman asked us all to write down what we would be doing in the next 5 days, five weeks, five months, to move our flipped classrooms forward. And then, we did we see ourselves in five years. That's a lot of thinking. And it's been in the back of my head since last Wednesday. Now it's time to put those thoughts into the universe. These past five days.... It's been percolating (that's what I call prewriting in my little universe) I've looked through notes and visited blogs I've gone back to presentations. Watched them. Remembered the excitement I felt as I listened to those who are flipping with success. And one keynote, one person, stays with me. Ramsey Musallum. I've seen him twice--once in April and again

Most Important Take-Away

This simple tweet pretty much sums up the best take-away from the first day of flipcon13. In fact, it pretty much sums up teaching in general, don't you think? At least for me it does. I've never been able to  teach a kid anything if I didn't have a relationship with them in the first place. That's why I've always spent the first few days of a school year getting to know my kids. I use some silly activities (but not many, because as an adult, I hate touchy, feely get to know you activities), kids give little speeches to introduce themselves, and we talk. We talk a lot. We talk about summer. We talk about sports practices play practices swim practice We talk about jobs We talk about cars We talk about friends And snuck into all that talking... We talk about books and writing and homework and school And I learn a lot. Now, don't get me wrong. I learned a lot in all my sessions. There was a great one just for English teachers and we just tal

Concert in the Park

My favorite thing of the summer--concerts with friends. Last Saturday dawned with the summer smell of the lake--fresh, with a promise, a promise of new memories. Saturday night we went to see 3 Dog Night (yes, the same group you remember from your teen years if you are anywhere close to my age) at an outdoor concert in "The Park" , as we call it. Amazingly, four members of the original band are still together and they have been playing together for 44 years. 44 years! Isn't that amazing? There's always an interesting mix of people at these concerts. Those who come for show, because it's the place to be and the real ones who come for the music. And there are those who must not have anything else to do....they plop down their chair, open a beverage, text their friends, AND THEY DON'T MOVE It's a rock concert. How do you not move? I grew up with live bands. I have many friends who play in live bands. Live music requires you to MOVE, t

Thoughts on Tiggers and the End of the Year

So here we are. The last full real day of school. Tomorrow is a half day of handing things back, an awards assembly, and then they are gone. And, so of course, like most teachers, I look back on the year and think about what worked, what didn't, what drove me crazy and what gave me JOY. There is a lot of end of the year craziness going on. My trusty yardstick disappeared. I looked everywhere for it. I mentioned it the other day in my 8th hour speech class. "Well, yeah, about that....." And the story came out about filming commercials and hitting a ball and, well, let's just say that now I have a half a yard stick. No telling what happened to the other half. Gotta love my SSB's. And my freshmen boys, well they are another story. They are done with sitting still and being quiet (not they ever really did those things). A few days ago, Katherine wrote about how being the parent of boys helps you in the teaching of them. And I have to agree. I thin