Saturday, February 8, 2014

Celebrate 2/8

Discover. Play. Build.

This is a fabulous idea from Ruth Ayres in which we write about something to celebrate each Saturday. I am looking forward to participating in this link up each week and hearing about the awesome things happening in everyone's classrooms and lives.


Working with the student council this year has been super fun.  We have an excellent group of leaders that are enthusiastic about doing good things for their school.  One of the fun things we arranged this year was a middle school dance.  Last night, the dance happened and it was so fun to see how much the students enjoyed themselves.  Everyone behaved, the student council was stellar in setting up and cleaning up afterwards, and we all went home happy (but tired from the extra long work day).  


I get to be a book giver for World Book Night 2014!  I didn't remember if I had filled out the application or not, so I was super excited to get the e-mail confirming me as a book giver.  I will be giving out 20 copies of Code Name Verity to students at my school and my husband's school.  I love this idea and I am so happy to be a part of it this year!  


On Friday, I was super indulgent with my coffee stop.  I try not to go to Starbucks on Fridays because it is always a madhouse.  However, I woke up late and the travel mugs were all dirty, so making coffee at home just wasn't happening.  I stopped at Starbucks and purchased my coffee, along with two breakfast items.  One of these items was their new Chocolate Caramel Muffin.  Oh. My. Goodness. Such deliciousness!  The warm caramel oozes out of the chocolate cake and the mix is perfect.  I am almost sorry I got it because it will surely lead to cravings in the future now that I know how good it is. 


After weeks of feeling like I was in a teaching slump, this week I felt the energy returning.  In my reading workshop, I conferenced with about half the class so far and asked them to evaluate themselves as readers.  I was so pleased to hear that all of these students felt like they were improving.  They were all able to give me concrete evidence to back up their thoughts: some said they were reading more, some said they were reading faster, and some said they now like reading when they didn't before.  All of these were reasons to celebrate with each reader.  I was also impressed with their abilities to pinpoint weaknesses and set a goal for improvement.  I am glad I decided to do this goal-setting/evaluation conference with my students.  I think it will help all of us to get back on track.   I also have focused our energy back to the strategies we have learned so far this year and the signposts we have learned.  I would like to start some literature groups soon and I was glad to get all my readers focused again.  (January was such a weird month with a lot of days off, planned and unplanned.  I think all of us lost our school mojo for a little bit).

What do you have to celebrate this week?  I would love to hear from you in the comments!


  1. I bet it was very hard to get in any kind of rhythm in January with so many days off. I love Code Name Verity--my favorite book last year. I haven't yet found that "just right" reader for it. The couple of students I've recommended it to haven't connected with it. But I might have someone this semester who would love it, so I will keep trying. That muffin looks amazing! Don't go to Starbucks often (love my indie locals!), but if I make it there this month, I'll definitely be looking for that muffin. Interesting observations about having your students do a little reflection and focus on their goals. I think I need to do that next week in my Children's Lit class.

  2. Connecting with readers in workshop can be so overwhelming. It's like cat wrangling. The fact that your readers have a good sense of where they are and what they need to do says a lot about what you are teaching. You may have felt in a teaching slump, but they obviously held on to what your were giving them and making something of it!

  3. Great feedback in your reading conferences! Sounds like so much is going right! Much to celebrate!

  4. Ahh I hear the excitement of a Friday trip to Starbucks in your post! I cannot indulge in that splurge anymore....but I can surely appreciate how it fueled your way towards the weekend!@

  5. Your number four is such a great example of refocusing. It's a good reminder for anyone who feels the teaching slump to take time to reflect and then move forward. A bit of chocolate muffin helps too. :)

  6. I can totally relate to the teaching slump - I think January threw us all off. With all the snow interruptions, it was hard to maintain enthusiasm and focus! Teachers lost teaching stamina and students lost learning stamina for sure. Let's hope we all get back on track! :-)