So it’s officially summer and I am already almost two weeks in. For those people that do not have summer off, I feel sorry for you. Often teachers are looked upon with pity and given verbal high fives and looks with furrowed brows, wondering “How do you do it? I could never be a teacher.” Two words: Summer Assholes! No offense….but I am also aware of those people who fill teachers up with fabricated sympathy while secretly thinking, “please teachers don’t deserve a raise, they work 7.5 hrs. a day with three months off per year.” I know I can honestly say that even the WORST teacher I have seen works more that 7.5 hrs a day but that’s for another post. Back to this one which is “Summer Assholes!”

I am so grateful to lay around in bed until the very late hour of 8:00 am while I hear my husband quietly sliding out of bed at 630 am and shoving off to the office. I love that I can creep down the hall to see my two year rubbing his eyes as he flips through a Dr. Seuss book left in his bed. I love watching the coffee brew and making my son healthy breakfasts. Slow walks around the block, countless hours in the pool, no make-up, house projects, cocktails at 3:00pm? Sure!

Summer Time is awesome and it gets teachers prepared for the next 9  months of school. 9 months of catch up from summer in which parents chose not to force their child’s hand to read or engage in anything academic. So it’s back to the grindstone….and the cycle continues.

Happy Summer!

Humility is hard to swallow. The realization that sometimes you may be wrong in others’ eyes is somethin that can only be experienced through maturity. I have learned as a teacher over the years that perception is everything. Personality is important and relationships matter. Additionally, you may not want a relationship that you forget, but do so out of necessity and out of the need to wash off the negative memories. And I suppose this is true for any career.

However when Marzano’s new observation system was put into place it was supposed to eliminate many issues because all administrators would be trained and know how to observe and be able to equally compare teachers.

But this is not the case because we are humans. As humans our emotions and gossip get in the way. We allow connotations and others’ perceptions influence and change our opinions rather than rely on facts.

Marzano’s iobservation is incredibly helpful. It digs deep into a teacher’s classroom and pulls out evidence of instruction, questioning, rapport, management and more. However it is still dependent upon the person at the other end of the ipad.

Is everyone’s defintion of classroom managment the same? Is everyone’s definition of positive feedback the same?

Ironically iobservation has created more questions than answers in its early stages and i can only hope these questions will soon become realizations that teachers and adminstrators can agree on.

iobservation

http://www.iobservation.com/

I often day dream of being on DIY Network or TLC mega makeovers but I plan on making my own money so I can actually afford these things on my own. I cannot help but get a teeny bit jealous of people on Property Ladder and the like when people get brand new kitchens or beautiful backyards. Then I look over at my husband and remember I did not marry Mr. Fix-it. As much as I enjoy home projects, it’s not his favorite way to spend a weekend. I often am on my own in that department.
However one of my favorite products ever is Simple Green. I love it because it is non-toxic and biodegradable. Considering Global Warming is now ocurring and Orlando temperatures in the winter have now begun to soar to the 80′s, Green algae has formed on our gutters. I initially thought I needed to replace them because they looked so bad. However this past weekend I used a scrub brush and Simple Green and they turned out great! I can’t wait until my next project.

 

 

I ran into my old self yesterday. I was at Target, running errands with my son, trying to navigate the aisles as expeditiously as possible so that Gabe would not melt down or turn into “I want it” mode. We made it to the check out and Gabe remembered he had been given stickers at checkout in the past. He immediately began asking for one and I distracted him by having him help place items on the check out belt. He happily assisted and we almost successfully made it out the door.

Gabe began shouting “stickah.” I asked if he wanted one and he coyly smiled and said “yes pees.” I told him to walk up to the customer service counter and ask for a sticker. That is when I ran into the old me.

I never liked children; never babysat, never found joy in making a baby smile not ever WANTED a baby. I never ran to hold a friends baby and I would cringe in horror at the sound of an infant crying. Even when pondering whether I wanted a baby I just thought ‘whatever happens.” When I became pregnant I cried tears of sadness, thinking my life was over. However through having my son I have become almost paralyzed with love. I work every second around my son; how I can spend as much time with him. Every breath he takes is adorable. Every movement is amazing. Now at two, his personality is apparent and he is a heart breaker.
As Gabe approached the “old me” at the counter I looked on lovingly. The girl at the counter stood there on the phone, not noticing my sons tiny pudgy fingers curled over the edge of the counter. She did not look down when he said “stikah pees!” She stayed on the phone. A small flame ignited in the back of my head as I stared, astonished at her inattentiveness towards my ‘Baby Jesus.’ I walked towards the counter as my son repeated, “stickah pees!” She looked at me and I smiled and asked if she had any stickers. Irritated with our request she fumbled through her drawer and found a sticker. She handed it to my son and he said “TANK OO.” I smiled again thinking surely this girl will smile at him. However we were again met with indifference. I told Gabe to come along and he stood there waving saying, “TANK OO, TANK OO” and my old self sat on the phone, completely uninterested in my amazing child. I picked him up and thought how happy I am and how unhappy I used to be.

Uploads 007

The effects of Alzheimer’s disease
My parents have always been very affectionate. I can recall squirming and feeling uneasy sometimes, not wanting to witness their affectation for one another. As I have gotten old it has become a source of comfort for me. Knowing that even during arguments or disagreements the night before, the next morning would bring a hug, a kiss a butt pat, a squeeze….a reaffirmation of love. Recently my mother’s dementia has caused a regression of the affection that my dad used to eagerly dole out. Her dementia has made her moody, insecure and negative. My mother’s attention span is not easily kept and she quickly criticizes and complains. My parents’ morning routine has slowly changed. They used to sit at the kitchen counter reading the paper together. Now my dad reads and my mom complains about Matt Laurer or Al Roker. I know some of this is simply people getting older, but her dementia keeps her from focusing on the paper. So mornings become difficult as my mom criticizes and my dad’s nose sinks deeper into the paper.

Marriage is a commitment in which two people know there will be compromise and sacrifice. Spouses are told that sometimes in order to change a behavior you have to change your own behavior. But what about when it is out of our control? When we cannot control something no matter what we do? Is this the “better or for worse” part? Can there be ” better or for worser?”

    My son is now 18 months old and I had never spent more than 24 hours away from him. This past weekend was my close friend’s 40th birthday so I had planned on going away to Hawk’s Cay Resort with her. Initially I told myself that I would leave Thursday right after work and return Monday. In my head I was ready to go balls to the wall crazy. I wanted to post on Facebook to meet me at The Square Grouper Thursday night prior to our departure to the Keys, and I planned on getting crazy!

    Then I realized my son’s ear was still infected. I took him to the specialist on Thursday and was told they had to clean out his ear. Suddenly they had him wrapped up like a burrito and he was screaming his head off while they removed the infected discharge from his ear.  It was a quick, simple procedure but to me he needed his momma. I wrapped him up and took him home with me and stayed another night.

    I woke up early in order to make my way to Jupiter for our morning departure. I swung by my parents house in Tequesta and had them give me a ride to Margo’s house. I tried not to give my mom directions since she has dementia and i wanted to make sure she still knew how to get there. I was excited that she only had to ask me one question.

    I sincerely felt like a 15 year old, having my mom drop me off at my friend’s house for a sleep over. I waved good bye to my mom and started to finally relax. A group of 8 ladies all packed into two vehicles with lots, and lots and lots of stuff. The drive down was dreary and rainy. I was thankful for Diana and her gorgeous Audi SUV.

    WE stopped at Jimmy Johns’ in Islamorada and had a fantastic lunch. I had the grouper reuben and the ladies had fish tacos. We made to Hawk’s Cay only to find out that they had mis-booked our room. We ended up having to wait and then were happily upgraded to a 4 bedroom villa with a private pool. Ahhhhh.

    The debauchery ensued with lots of cocktails and music. Thankfully our neighbors appreciated the entertainment rather than get annoyed. I passed out pretty early but not before listening to Margo and Jeanette screaming at one another about body suits and The Olympics. Confused? well yes, they were lit and having a blast.

    The next day was great at Hawk’s Cay. All I can say is thank you for the adults only pool. We relaxed and read and laughed our asses off. Sat night was capped off with a dancing in the pool routine which was quite impressive since I was one of the choreographers.

    Although it took me until the second night to fully relax, I am thankful I did. I could have rushed home Sunday evening but my girlfriends encouraged me by saying, “Why the hell do you want to do that? You’re going home to dirty laundry, a dirty house and you will be happy for the first 10 minutes then regret not enjoying time to yourself.” I was thankful for that advice.

     

    http://www.hawkscay.com/

    As a teacher, I am part social worker, counselor and teacher. Why the fuck don’t we get paid for this shit?

    I am worn out mentally, emotionally and physically! We have to listen, guide, counsel, assist, teach, scaffold balance, dictate, model, assess, evaluate, increase, decrease, and on and on. These negative attitudes are exhausting and frustrating and ridiculous.

    I will never forget the day my dad told me not to become a teacher. “They don’t amke any money”

    I will never forget the day my mom told me to become a techer. “You would be a great teacher.”

    Both are so true! Both are so frustrating.

    The emotional satisfaction sometimes never occurs and is certainly not enough.

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