Saturday, April 30, 2011

Summer preview

 Spring break has consisted of two things:
beach and pool
I listened to waves crashing and read a book as I floated along in the pool. There are only 29 more days left of school...which I am a little worried since my students have to start and finish a research project on various influential people and read Willy Wonka plus watch the movie. AHHH
At least summer is close and I will soon be returning to floating and sun bathing.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Wake up call

I have never been more excited to DVR a show than before. I am not going to be waking up at the crack of dawn to watch the wedding...I will be sleeping in since I am running out of spring break days to do so. I am sure everything will go as planned the happy couple will look perfect and I will view the royal wedding at a decent time not at 4 wake up call for me thank you!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Peep attack

No one in my family is a huge PEEP fan! They are cute to look at, but eating a sugar coated marsh mellow chick does not sound appealing! For some odd reason we had a box of these yellow birds sitting around and of course curiosity arose which led to this...
Ruth examined the peep for quite a while
took a sniff and sneezed then walked away. I must say I was a little disapointed that she did not attack the peep.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

FEED 100 Bag

Whole Foods has joined with FEED projects to ends child hunger. The FEED 100 bag will provide 100 nutritious meals to hungry school age children in Rwanda through the United Nation World Food Program's School Feeding Program. A majority of children eat their one and only meal at school. In fact this school meal is often the only reason why children come to school. Not only are they being feed and learning, but the FEED 100 bag is ending the poverty cycle. Three hundred schools have benefited from the World Food Program.

school attendance has grown from 63% to 93%
gender gap is closing for children who attend school
girls who have a few years of school have fewer children later in life
children who go to school are likely to send their future children to school too

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

The button

After watching this past week’s episode of NBC's Parenthood one question came to mind: to mainstream or not to mainstream?
For those that are unaware of what mainstream is...
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act //IDEA\\ mandated that all Americans with disabilities has the right to a free public education. One practice aimed at providing a positive educational experience for special education students is mainstreaming, in which students with disabilities are placed in the general education classroom for part of the school day. The aim of mainstreaming is to give students with disabilities the opportunity to gain appropriate socialization skills and access to the same education as general education students. Mainstreaming also allows students with disabilities to learn in the least restrictive environment.//LRE\\
Mainstreaming has become a regular practice at many schools. Special education students can be mainstreamed into a general education classroom for part of the school day -- for example, spending Language Arts class in the general education classroom, but spending the math class in the special education classroom. Mainstreaming is customizable and often relies on the judgment of the general classroom teacher and the special education teacher, both of whom will keep in constant communication to clearly evaluate a student's progress. When used correctly, mainstreaming allows the special education student to take full advantage of all resources available to them.
Max's mom, Kristina, is worried about mainstreaming Max. During the episode she listed all of her many concerns:
fitting into a new environment
explaining Max to others
holding him back
Gabby, Max's behavior specialist, said she wished there was a guarantee in knowing that Max would be successful in a mainstreamed classroom.
I feel the same way I wish there was a button that I could press to see how a student is going to handle being placed out of ESE. Unfortunately, there is no button or guarantee that a student will be successful in a general education classroom.
In order for students to be placed out of an ESE class an IEP/staffing has to be held with a team//which may include\\ parents, teachers, specialist, administration, and a student. During an IEP the team discusses the student’s performance in school and what action needs to be done to further their success. During an IEP meeting the topic of placement/mainstreaming arises.
There have been many students this year that have been mainstreamed in one class or another. A majority of the students are successful and few are having difficulty. I can think of two perhaps three students that might not make it and could eventually make their way back to my classroom.
I wish there was a button that I could press that would allow me to view if a student was going to be successful or not in the general education classroom!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Barefoot teacher

 Today I ditched my shoes and went barefoot to bring awareness to children that go without. I have to admit that in the middle of the night I was wishing the day was done because I just wanted to get this barefootness over with. Walking out of the door this morning in my work clothes with naked feet was a completely foreign feeling. I was hoping to spend the morning in my classroom preparing for the day and not putting my shoeless feet on display, but there was a faculty FCAT meeting in the media center...Oh joy. I marched my slowly becoming filthy feet up to the meeting waiting for someone to comment. A few people noticed my feet and asked why I would go without my shoes; which I explained why. The meeting finally ended just as the bell rang to let the students in. Which allowed for the perfect opportunity for my toes to be stepped on as I made my way back to my classroom...and so the day of teaching without shoes began
1st period- no students noticed...they are usually just waking up
3rd period- less than five minutes..."miss what happened to your shoes, did someone steal them?"
5th period-as they are walking through the door "miss you know you have no shoes on"
7th period-"I heard you forgot your shoes today " I allowed students that wanted to go barefoot take off their only lasted 10 minutes as most of them found the feeling of being shoeless strange.

I showed all of the classes that noticed my bare feet the TOMS video so they could get a better understanding for why I went without shoes. After the video I discussed the fact that there are students that would love to go to school, but cannot because they do not have shoes. I told them that they are extremely blessed that they get to spend every day learning and how there are so many children that wished they could do the same. Most of the students were very quiet after the video and my mini speech.

Bell rings and I examine my now black speckled feet which slightly burned. All in all I could not imagine teaching barefoot every day. I am glad that I experienced a little piece of what children go through without having shoes.

//Cherry on top\\
One of my projects on Donors Choose was fully funded this morning 

Monday, April 4, 2011

Will you go bare foot tommorow?

People around the globe will be arousing curiosity and awareness by leaving their shoes at home. Why, you might ask?

For children that go without shoes every day.

Children throughout the world are affected by not having shoes to wear every day. Growing up shoeless alters their lives by
Receiving an education
Diagnosed with a preventable disease
Life altering health conditions
Lack of medical care
Walking to gather water
Family responsibilities
Job opportunities

Leave your shoes behind tomorrow to bring attention to those that are without shoes everyday!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Planter cuteness

How adorable is this white eyelet planter! Violas would look gorgeous against the white pot. IKEA is my favorite and I will defiantly be visiting this little piece of heaven over spring break!

I spent a good hour cleaning out all of my pots today preparing them for new flowers. My bamboo of two years are officially dead…I guess I should not of kept them in direct sunlight.


Another store is featuring FEED Projects merchandise. Feed is branching out from their typical bags and are now offering kitchen necessities through Pottery Barn. PB is selling four items that will provide food and water to children.

Each item designates a certain amount of water and food:
Water bottle = an entire year of water for one child
Bag = fifty school meals
Spork = three school meals
Containers = six school meals

With each purchase you will provide more than a meal - you will have invested in a child's future

Did you know
For many children around the world hunger is not only a daily struggle, it is life threatening. Every five seconds a child dies from hunger, and over 350 million children go to bed hungry each night.

When children start the day hungry, they can focus on little else- including their education. However school meals offer hope. Research has shown that when boys and girls are given nutritious school meal, school attendance increases and performance improves greatly. For many children, this is the only meal they will receive all day, and it is enough to empower them to survive, to learn and to improve their lives.