Saturday, May 3, 2014

Celebrate 5/3

Join this fabulous group of bloggers as we celebrate our weeks. You can link up on Ruth Ayres blog at

How did it get to be May already? Lots of small celebrations all around make the week a happy one.

 1. I forgot to celebrate the fun book giving of World Book Night last week. I had so much fun handing out copies of Code Name Verity to students. The thing to celebrate this week was the fact that I saw multiple students starting to read that book right away. I can't wait to talk to some of them about it!

 2. I love seeing my students reading. So many of them are choosing to read during study hall or free time in class. It is so amazing to really have created this environment in which everyone knows to respect the reading space of classmates.

 3. After a week of rainy days, the sun is out today.

 4. On Wednesday, the student council hosted a Teacher Appreciation breakfast. I love the way our staff responded to this nice gesture. These students are such a great group of kids and I love working with them. They wanted to do so much more for the teachers, but setting up the breakfast and being there to thank the teachers was enough.

 5. One of my less structured lessons this week was the one in which students picked groups or decided to work on their own to prepare a spoken word poem. They all had handed in a poem to me ahead of time, so they had to choose one of their poems to perform. I also gave them the option of finding a poem if they didn't want to use one of their own. I was amazed at the good work that was happening. Students were spontaneously revising and editing poems, combining poems to make a new one, and working hard to figure out how to perform. There was one group of boys in particular that I couldn't believe were working so well together. They usually play around and don't get their work done, but they all worked and were keeping each other in check as they figured everything out.

 6. After some disappointment in the job search, it was nice to start thinking about our plans for next year. I really do have some great colleagues and I think we have a great plan for the coming school year. I am working on figuring out a way to be able to teach reading and language arts to all four seventh and eighth grade classes. It will take some tricky scheduling, but I would love the flexibility of only planning for these subjects and the ability to really connect the lessons. Right now, I teach language arts to three classes, but only have one of those classes for reading. My principal has come up with a schedule for our switching that would give me all four classes for language arts and now we just have to figure out the morning and how to make the reading work. I am thankful for colleagues who see that this would be a good idea and are willing to work with me to make it happen.


  1. Love you gave out Code Name Verity, and hope you share more as you get to discuss it. I hope you get to work out the scheduling too. It seems excellent for you to be teaching both subjects. Actually, I'm surprised they aren't 90 minute block classes all mixed together. Best wishes for the scheduling, Andrea.

  2. Sounds like you had a lot to celebrate this week! I loved Code Name Verity, and I'm the people you handed the book to will also. It's so rewarding when groups work well together, and I bet the spoken poetry came out great! Good luck with figuring out your schedule. :-) Have a great week!

  3. Hope you'll post about what the students think of Code Name Verity. I have loaned it to a few of my college students, but it hasn't been that "just right" book for anyone yet. Bummer, as it was my favorite read of 2013! Isn't it wonderful to see students choosing to read when they don't have to? I really felt successful at my job when the principal told me he kept seeing students pulling out their books at sporting events (before the game started or during half time). And I have no idea how it's May already. Seems like it was just April 1! Have a wonderful week!