Saturday, April 19, 2014

Shark Results and depressing news about next year. . .



The shark worked. like. a. charm.

The whole day.

They were both ;) working their hardest on every assignment and not throwing chairs or scissors across the room.

Dearest Easter Bunny, please let this shark work for at least another week. 
Love,
Mrs. Leeby

And one of my sweet little darlings let me record his reading of our Day 5 Word of the Week assignment.
I love his voice!


************************************
Okay and now for the sad stuff. . . 
Don't worry- I still have my job.

Yesterday at 1pm we all get an email from my boss, whom I absolutely love and adore, saying that we have a meeting with our area superintendent directly after school.
On Good Friday.
With a two hour warning.

Sigh- you know that nothing good can come of that.

We meet and I'm sitting next to my amazingly passionate principal. The area sup. stands up and announces that there a lot of changes happening in the district and that we are getting a new principal next year and we will be the first school in the district to take on the "collaborative model."
My principal NEVER shows emotion and is always professional, so she looked fine.
We are all in shock.
Mouths dropped.
He proceeds to tell us that she will have another position in the district.
Huh?

I want to give a little background info that I haven't shared yet with anyone in the blogging world. 
My school has had the saddest, most tragic year ever.
Ever.
We have had a family with 5 of our students (7 children total in this family) have a mother pass away in October. This was so sad and our school and community came together to support them. In February, this same family was trapped in a house fire that killed 5 out of their 7 children. The two survivors were our students and 3 of our students died. This was all over the news, so some of you might have heard about this already.
This has messed up so many children in so many grades and our kids AND TEACHERS are still struggling with this tragic loss.
Last week, our beloved secretary who is my age, was in the car with her 2 year-old and husband. She was pregnant and so happy. 
Their car was going way too fast and slammed into a semi-truck (also all over the news) and she and her husband died instantly. In front of their child in the back seat, who is now an orphan.
We have such a challenging population of students with such sad stories already. If I had a dollar for every time that I have reported physical and sexual abuse, I could quit TPT. (Okay, not really but you get my point.)
Throughout all of this ADDED tragedy and loss, my principal has been a rock. She's been the face of our school and community and has supported so many people.

I'm telling you, we have the best principal. Great leader. Does everything the district wants. Puts up with parents freaking out every day. Breaks up fist fights hourly. This week alone she broke up two fights between PARENTS and students. Has had death threats. You name it, this woman puts up with it and is ALWAYS trying to be a better human and principal. Always.

The area sup. then proceeds to tell us that we don't exactly know what the collaborative model will look like that we will, "build the plane as we fly it."

AAAAAHHHHHH! WHAT. THE. #%$!?????

1 in 3 of our students are homeless. We can't keep teachers in the building more than a year or two. Our staff is almost entirely made up of Teach for America.
Our children do NOT need more instability.

He's done speaking and I turn to my principal and she says right away, "I'm fine."
I said, "I'm gonna cry. Why would this happen? We need stability. You are so passionate. . "
She bursts into tears.

Everyone started crying and hugging.

Not so Good Friday.

I'm grateful that I can still be at this school and hope to remain a stable force there and in this community for a very long time.  I just don't like this kind of change. :(

I can't end on this sad note. . .
So, let's hear about your plans for tomorrow!
Do you celebrate Easter? Could you not care any less?

I am making brisket and twice-baked sweet potatoes. Yum!

Leave a comment with some happy news and I'll pick a winner (for every 15 comments) Monday night to win my Eric Carle Pack AND Letter and Sound Pictures Sorts. So, there could be multiple winners, depending on the number of comments. 

 Happy Saturday!



Thursday, April 17, 2014

Intervention Update {and my superintendent visited my classroom. . . during end-of-day clean up}


Well, the Koala lasted one day. Today, my little chair-thrower decided in Media that he preferred this dragon. The Media teacher allowed a swap and I wasn't gonna mess with it.
Everything was beautiful. . . 
until it wasn't.

There was a moment in which he decided that the dragon didn't define him anymore.

He set it down and walked away.

I watched in horror.

He took a box of another table's crayons and threw it.

Ugh! No! I used my EnVoy skills and in my PRIVATE VOICE I asked him to pick that up and apologize and teach Dragon, otherwise I was going to let another student teach Dragon instead.

He glared at me.
I didn't move a muscle.
He picked up a chair and you know how the rest of this story goes. . . 

I gave Dragon to someone else.
More destruction ensued.

Eventually I calmed him down and my other sweet kiddos helped.

I asked him to please join us. 

He simply said, "I want to teach a shark."

What the?

So, I have a bag of sharks just lying in wait to bring in tomorrow.

Wish me luck.

I need peace my last 35 days. . .

Here's what my kids were doing all day, without stuffed animals.
{BTW, these are all ON SALE TODAY and TOMORROW}

LETTER AND WORD OF THE WEEK LINK


FARM UNIT LINK

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Okay and get this. My superintendent visited MY CLASSROOM at clean up time.
At what time?
You heard me.

Nooooo!

I somehow pulled the kids to the carpet quietly and they started saying the smartest, cutest things like, "We are authors!"
And she said to them, "Did you know that I am visiting your classroom because I have heard so many amazing things about your teacher?"

I blacked out after that and am praying that I acted normal.



All the way. The whole thing. Right into my finger. 
I almost fainted.

Happy almost Friday!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Chair-thrower Intervention! {Yes. . . in April.}


Alright, everyone. 
Yes, you're getting a chair-thrower update. 
In April?
"I thought you finally had him under control," you might say.

I did.

Then I lost control again.

The last two weeks have been filled with chair-throwing, violence, destruction of property, etc.
Even if he isn't doing those things, he absolutely refuses to do any sort of work whatsoever. 
Nothing.
Zip.
Won't even write his name.
I don't let him go to recess, specials, etc. when this behavior is happening and have him stay back to model the correct behavior. Which hasn't happened. I'm pretty strict and wasn't going to let him get away with this again.
Not in April!
I put my foot down and I wasn't going to budge.

He wasn't going to either.

We have been going absolutely nowhere and it is back to consuming my time and energy for the class.

Today I had an intervention idea. . . 
What if I allow him to take a stuffed animal around to Daily 5 rotations, math, etc. to teach it what kindergarten is like?

After the first chair-throw this morning, I put this plan into action and it worked like a charm!


My little guy could not have been cuter all day! He kept talking to, "Koala" and teaching it what to do.
I wanted to cry.
I was so happy for me him.

Sigh.

I don't care where my energy has been going, my little rockstars are SO in their routine and so smart that literacy, math and everything in between is effortless! Thank goodness!
Check out our CUTE Earth Day project! It's a principal/parent pleaser in the hallway!
Boo ya!

Here's a peek at our Daily 5 the last two days:

Grab this freebie here.








The above pictures are from this pack which is on SALE!
Because apparently everyone is having a tax sale today and I didn't want to feel left out... and you shouldn't either.
:)



And I leave you with this. . . 

I wanted to surprise my son after seeing this pin.
They don't tell you that the spaghetti inside the hotdogs doesn't cook all the way. 
Or maybe they do.
I didn't look further than the picture.
We had crunchy insides. Yuck.
Note to self: Next time cut the hotdogs into smaller bites.

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Eric Carle, Bee Hive, Earth Day and More!


I have been meaning to blog for days, but life happens and my priorities had to be my sweet little boy and yoga. 

Namaste.

So. . . let me catch you up on the last week and today. We've had tons of literacy fun, Eric Carle LOVE, science and Earth Day. 
Already?
You heard me.
I want the pictures in the hallway beforehand. . . 
So that I appear on top of things.

Check it all out!

Daily 5

This week- still a letter per day and our sight word is "went."

We had to add in a little Heidi today. WE LOVE HER!

Every single worksheet/activity above (sans Heidi) is from this lifesaver mega pack with super simple printing!


Author Study
We are in the midst of our Eric Carle Author Study, which lasts for a month!
This has been so much fun and I think I'll just let the pictures speak for themselves!

I







Okay, everything above is from this pack that has made this Author Study so much more fun!!!



Spring Literacy
We had some fun with my Spring Has Sprung! pack, as well!



SCIENCE
We've been having a blast in science! We made bird feeders again. The kids are so cute- checking on them constantly!

Check out this hornets' nest that was in a tree at my parents' house! 
The kids absolutely loved the chance to hold it!


And it's that time again- for our Earth Day Promise!
My sweet Nora hung them up today, so I'll take a final pic tomorrow morning. :)

Are you as exhausted as I am?
Happy Monday!


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