Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The Perfect Send-Off

I know my last post indicated I wouldn't be posting again until next school year but I just had the share this...

Granted, this is my first last-day-of-school so I don't know if this is normal, but on the last day at dismissal, all the teachers run out and line up along the driveway and wave goodbye to every single student. The teachers scream and yell and hold up signs. It's amazing! There is no other way to describe it other than feeling all filled up with warm fuzzies. I heart my school.

Have great summer!

Hip Hip Hooray and Sniff Sniff

I won't lie... I have been looking forward to this day for about 3 weeks now. My first year has been a crazy ride of amazing moments, frustrating moments, confused moments, what-the-hell-did-I-get-myself-into moments, loving moments and I-love-what-I-do moments. That's a lot to deal with. Basically, I've been looking forward to the end so that I may start again, this time feeling like I know what I am doing. Fresh start!

But in all that thinking about me, I haven't really thought too much about the 21 little lovies that I am going to say bye to today. We had a fantastic morning of special projects and a movie... with one small glitch between the project and the movie* everyone has been in a great mood, having fun and well behaved (if kids are happy they behave -- did you all know that? I think a lot of adults don't). I am having a good time sitting back and reflecting at how they have grown this year. Amazing.

Right now they're in the cafeteria eating pizza and rejoicing that it's a Tuesday and they get to sit next to whomever they want - normally they sit boy/girl except on Fridays. We will have a long recess with popsicles and then our last Choice Time. It all seems so final. This is it for them and me. I'm pretty darn sad about it. It's like the last day of camp... always heartbreaking for me.

So I will "see" you all in a month... teachers are due back July 21st. I plan to sleep in, lay out in the sun, travel, and plan for next year. I will soak up the quiet time and enjoy not hearing my name said over, and over, and over, and over... Have a great break!

*My kids don't seem to understand that you can have more than one friend and they choose their one friend by announcing to the unlucky kiddos who weren't chosen. Insults were said, tears flowed, feelings were hurt... oy vey. We had a whole class discussion and explained our heart has room for many friends and each year our heart grows bigger to fit more friends. Let's hope that message stuck.**

**One little girl proceeded to tell another girl she was not her friend 5 minutes after our talk. I sent her to the hallway to think about how she made the not-friend feel. Admittedly I forgot about her and after 25 minutes our AP walked in and let me know that I can't leave a kid in the hall unsupervised. Doh. The teary eyed girl came in sorry for what had happened. Lesson learned by both of us!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Picnic Peeve

I didn't want to sully my previous post with this because the picnic really was fantastic... but it really gets my undies in a bunch when a parent volunteers to help and frankly doesn't help at all. ESPECIALLY WHEN THEIR CHILD IS MISBEHAVING AND I HAVE TO CONSTANTLY DISCIPLINE THEM. Wtf.

Kindergarten Picnic Recipe

39 students
80 Capri-Suns
8 pizzas
10 parents
5 teachers
1 Jug o' Water
40 Water Balloons
5 Hula Hoops
5 Jump Ropes
2 Soccer Balls
85 degree weather with a light breeze...

Mix together and enjoy!!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

You're Not Fat...

It's been an eventful day... I told my principal that I was pregnant and then told my team and then the news spread like wildfire. It was wonderful because keeping it quiet was difficult. But I digress to the point of this post. A couple of my kiddos overheard me talking with another teacher about the news.

Kid #1: "Are you going to have a baby?"

Me: "Yes, I am."

Kid #1: "Where is it? When can I see it?"

Me: "It's right here, but you can't see it this year. Next year when you're in first grade you'll see it. It's still growing"

Kid #2: "You're not having a baby. You're not fat."

Okay then! Kid #2 obviously hasn't noticed my grilled cheese and tuna noodle fat... I look forward to a new batch of curious kiddos, although if anyone has advice on "how did you get that baby?" question from 5 year olds, I'd love to hear it.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Field Day - The Wrap Up

We had a blast. Nothing to be nervous for next year... now my kids are crashed out on the carpet watching Strega Nona, Click, Clack, Moo, Cows that Type, Is Your Mama a Llama and Owl Moon on the Smart Board (yep, still loving it).

P.S. Only one kid did not get all 9 smiley faces and he had to work very very hard and messing it up. I didn't even have to be mean, my kids rocked.

Field Day

Today is Field Day and honestly, I am a bit nervous. We were given a 6 page packet, double sided, full of rules, procedures, maps, schedules, etc. I had a hard time paying attention after 2 pages.

I am to stay with my class as we rotate through various stations* in the heat of a summer day. I am to punch score cards for all the kids after each activity - smiley face if they tried hard, sad face if they didn't. The kids need all smiley faces to get a Popsicle at lunch so I hold the key to their afternoon happiness and honestly I sort of feel like being a hard ass about it. My kiddos have been prone to whining lately and it's driving me nuts. This might be a sick and twisted way to get my revenge. Wow... I am mean.

Other teachers have assured me that once you get started, it's fine. I hope they're right. I've got on my shorts, my school T-shirt, my sneaks, my whistle, and my Sharpie marker that hangs off my whistle (finally put to use - just like the commercial!). So here we come -- crab races beware!!!

*I like to go to P.E. a few minutes early to see what my kids are doing and let me tell you, these Field Day stations are not their strength!!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Smart Interactive Writing

My kids had so much fun writing a story about yesterday's storm and because we did it on the Smart Board it was exciting, new, and I was able to print a copy for everyone to take home. I'm thinking Interactive Writing books next year!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

I HEART the Smart Board

The kiddos are out the door and there are 9 days left of school. It's obvious from the posts that I am counting but our classroom just got a jolt of excitement. We have a Smart Board and boy are we excited!

I used the Smart Board extensively in 4th and 2nd grade but when I came to Kindergarten I wasn't sure how to utilize it, so I didn't ask for one until the end of the year. Now I am using it all the time. Attendance, morning message, math lessons galore, and upcoming science lessons! So fun! Not to mention the fine-motor benefits. This is exactly the shot in the arm I needed to get through the last days of school.

Sure... we've had our kinder-issues. Please don't make shadow puppets. Please don't touch the projector. Please listen when I show you how to use the pens. And sure, the "please" has been dropped off after frequent reminders, but all in all, it's a huge hit. I want to encourage any Kindergarten Smart Board skeptics to get one, and USE IT. It's awesome.