Saturday, April 7, 2012

So, 2 weeks into being back at school so far.  I set myself some goals for the transition.  :)
Week #1- go to work each day.  Yep, that was it, as long as I showed up at work at some point each day, I was doing good.  Assessment?  Totally achieved this goal.
Week #2- get to work on time each day.  Hmmm, now I'm creating some higher expectations.  Assessment?  Did well except for 1 day.  Yay, me!
Week #3- (starts on Monday)- do my job well. 

The transition back to school has been a little rough at times.  For the first week, I didn't feel mentally present at all.  The second week was a little better- by Thursday I had stopped simply staring blankly at students who asked me questions.  I even had answers for some of them.  My subs were great while I was gone, but finding the rhythm of teaching again may still take me a little while.

Another struggle has been finding time to pump.  I teach 3 classes in a row- and I can't quite see me pulling out my breastpump in front of high school students to pump during the morning.  I think the guys might spontaneously combust.  So, that leaves me with pumping at lunchtime.  As long as there are no meetings or students needing tutorials.  Luckily I can lock my door, although other teachers sometimes just unlock it and come in.  The VP who did was embarrassed enough, though, that I don't think he'll do that again.

Outside of school, I am becoming slightly obsessed by busy bags and quiet books.  Busy bags are activities that fit into a gallon ziploc bag so that they are fairly portable.  The idea is that you can use them at home, but you can also toss 1 or 2 into your bag to keep the kids occupied at a restaurant or the Dr.'s office or something like that.  Quiet books are groups of activities pulled together into a book.  The pages can be fabric or paper, and each page has its own activity.  I am involved in making 2 fabric ones currently- one that will be a variety of things and one based on an ABC theme.  I've joined some groups in which each person makes the activity for their own children, and then makes 5 or 6 more exactly the same (depending on the size of group) and mails those to the other members of the group.  So you end up with a large variety of activities- and you only had to be creative enough to come up with one of them.  :)

One of the group leaders has challenged us to make tutorials of the activities and pages we create, so I will be doing that.  Here are my plans for this exchange cycle:
Busy bag for toddlers- making shapes from popsicle sticks or pool noodle lacing.
Busy bag for infants- texture/ sensory cards
Themed busy bag related to Boynton books- a dress up game based on Blue Hat, Green Hat
Quiet book page ABCs- I have the letter B, so a beach page with sandcastle pieces (out of felt) for building
Quiet book page seasons- not really sure yet, but I have ordered a lot of felt leaves.
Quiet book page regular- something to do with the weather.

I'm not sure which I will tackle first, but should have a post up about 1 of these by the end of next week.

That's the news.

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