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Audiobook Tuesdays

22 May

Books get published on Tuesdays. By that I mean that new books come out on Tuesdays. Don’t ask me why the publishers do this. They just do.

Because publishers publish on Tuesdays, I know that, when I get up Tuesday morning, I will have a message from my local library. You see, I am not an audiophile, I am an audiobookphile. I always have the maximum number of audiobooks on hold – sometimes I even exceed the maximum because I recommend books for purchase. When you recommend a book for purchase, you are automatically placed on its hold list, even if your holds are already maxed!!! Biblioheaven

This morning, when I got up, there were two new, just released audiobooks waiting for me. They are downloading to my iPad as I write. And I already added two books from my wishlist to my holds list, so my holds are maxed again and all is right with the world.

My next recommended book comes out in two weeks.

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In the meantime, I have 19 other holds to think about and several borrowed books to get through. The last month of driving to and from work will be just delightful!

 

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Testing is snot funny

15 May

SBAC testing is very serious, and yet, I couldn’t help but laugh at the cacophony of upper respiratory noises emitted during our first day of testing – a mix of allergies and a feverish upper respiratory thing that has had kids out for a week, was sweeping my classroom. So many kids had to get up for tissues during the test period that I decided to put a box on every table for the next class.

As I knelt to pull out the last tissue boxes from the cupboard, I uttered a small gasp. The last boxes, in a Target multipack, were perfect for test season.

 

Although all the teaching posters were covered, I decided these were completely appropriate.

 

Ode to Dandelions

30 Mar

I saw these dandelions (Scientific nameTaraxacum) on a walk. As I said the Latin name, the rhythm of O Tannebaum popped into my head. A new song was born.

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Taraxacum, Taraxacum,
How yellow are thy petals.
Taraxacum, Taraxacum,
How lovely are thy petals.
Your leaves are green and edible
Your roots grow deep – incredible!
Taraxacum, Taraxacum,
How yellow are thy petals.

Taraxacum, Taraxacum,
How yellow are thy petals.
Taraxacum, Taraxacum,
How yellow are thy petals.
You’re often called a noxious weed
Your seeds fly far – that’s guaranteed!
Taraxacum, Taraxacum,
How yellow are thy petals.

Taraxacum, Taraxacum,
How yellow are thy petals.
Taraxacum, Taraxacum,
How yellow are thy petals.
Kids turn you into crowns and chains
Then return home covered in stains!
Taraxacum, Taraxacum,
How yellow are thy petals.

Spring Break

26 Mar

Spring Break is
staying up late Sunday night
and waking up
Monday morning
after the dog
whose needs must be met.

Spring Break is
a cup of coffee followed by
a pot of tea
left of the burner
to stay warm all day.

Spring Break is
watching the neighbors
climb into cars,
walk to the bus stop,
going to work
while you stay home.

Spring Break is
joy at the graded papers
left at school
so I can read and knit
and walk the dog
to my own drummer.

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Corn v. Flour

24 Mar

corn-tortilla-stack-g18-56a8c1e15f9b58b7d0f4da37  VS   download-1

The first tortilla I ever ate was in Antigua, Guatemala and it was a corn tortilla. I stayed in Guatemala for a month, learning Spanish and ate tortillas almost every day. Each and every one was a corn tortilla.

That first impression has shaped my world view. I always chose corn tortillas over flour, if given the choice. Alas, the choice isn’t always given. If you are a fan of flour tortillas, let me tell you some reason why you should switch to corn.

First, corn tortillas came first. Mesoamericans ate corn tortillas over a thousand years ago. Flour tortillas are an innovation the Spanish devised because they thought corn wasn’t a fit product for humans. Although flour tortillas roll better for burritos, corn tortillas are more authentic.

According to Prevention.com, the online version of Prevention Magazine, corn tortillas are better for you. Made only with corn and water, they have fewer calories,  more fiber, and less salt than flour tortillas. It might surprise you to know that, despite corn’s sweetness, flour tortillas have more sugar.

Spring Break started for me yesterday and one of my gals is to make my own corn tortillas. If it goes well, I might have another slice of tortillas.

 

 

Things parents said at conferences

16 Mar

“She spends too much time doing homework”

“This has been his best year yet.”

“We have that problem at home, too.”

“No teacher has ever said that about his bad handwriting. Thank you.”

“She’s up until 11:30 doing homework.”

“In the Fall, you said she didn’t speak up. This is a big improvement.”

“Do you teach grammar?”

“Just wait ’til you get the next one!”

“She loves the independence of middle school.”

“How can I help?”

“Do the children have chores? We are trying to have them help more at home.”

“He talks all the time at home!”

“Think of a few ways you can participate in more. But be specific and make it concrete.”

“Humanities is his favorite.”

“I’m afraid to touch the pile of papers beside his desk.”

“Thank you.”

 

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#Enough

15 Mar

National-Walkout-2018

I worried no one would walk out.

I figure a lot of 8th graders, and many 7th graders, would. But 6th graders are on that funny cusp. It is one of the things I love about teaching 6th graders.

The Walkout was schedule for 10:00 a.m. My first class began at 9:50. To my relief, kids came in talking about it. I acted all stern, insisting they sit quietly and read, which is our custom, but inside I was doing a happy dance.

At 9:58, I caught the eye of a girl looking at the clock and gave her a “two-minute” signal.

I got weepy at 10:00 when the majority of my class got up and left.

And then I laughed when, at 10:01, the announcement buzz sounded, not in a call to arms, but in a call for band and choir students to go to their field trip. Two more left.

I was left with 5 kids in class and a heart full of hope for the future.

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