Thursday, December 24, 2009
This is a yummy look at all the butter, eggs, chocolate and various other sundries that we used to create the dozens and dozens of cookies. And if you are thinking your eyes deceive you - you are not deceived my friend, that is a jar of nutella - food of the gods.
here are some pictures of our delicious delights. For the chocolate cookie recipe check out Sunset Magazine. I altered it a bit because they wanted you to use bittersweet chocolate - but I found that it would be too expensive - so we used semi-sweet chocolate chips. We also used nutella as well as peanut butter. They are both mouth watering.
I hope that you are enjoying this wonderful time of year. I am preparing to purge the house soon. Two of my very good friends are coming over to help me. I call myself a sentimental fool. And I like to keep things even if they are not the most useful. I worry that this is also what some people call hoarding. I will not end up like those people on that show on A&E so my plan is to get rid of a lot of the stuff that I no longer need. This means I will also be donating a lot of stuff to the Salvation Army/Good Will. It is going to be an interesting adventure.
Because my family could all get together last night we held our Christmas celebrations yesterday. We enjoyed a lovely meal of roast best and mash potatoes. Nicole and I had made a gaggle of cookies and so we munched all night long.
It was a fantastic evening of family, food, and presents.
Pictures will follow shortly!
Monday, December 21, 2009
After dragging myself out of bed - I prepared for a fun filled day.
Dog park with Tonka
Dinner with the Hubby
Watching some Golden Girls
Nicole and I are making cookies tomorrow and so that's why I needed to get some groceries. She lives about 40 min from town. In a far away land called Aguanga - it's past wine country and you have to drive past a house that has a life size dinosaur on the top of it. That dinosaur is also painted bright orange. It is a highlight of the trip.
We will be baking away so that we have lots of cookies to bring to our friends and families for Christmas. I'm really looking forward to the chocolate cookies with nutella in the center. What could be better than nutella? Nothing my friends, nothing.
Now I'm off to have some dinner with the Hub - Lasagna from Costco - yummo!
Saturday, December 19, 2009
7, 8, 9, 10, even 11 - those are numbers that will welcome me - calling me to adventures that have nothing to do with grading papers or calling parents. Those are kind numbers who treat you with care. The sun welcoming everyone to the day. That should be a hint to 6am - even the sun doesn't like you. It creeps out of bed a little later and later - just as we all should.
I look forward to seeing you in 2010 6am. It's not because I like you - but I enjoy the job that I go to after you greet me.
So - 6am I will see you next year!
Thursday, December 17, 2009
Students were supposed to give the answer - abated - but it was a fill in the blank question so here is how it looked.
The student ____ the teacher in order to avoid the fact that he was failing the class.
This is how I read it -
The student blanked the teacher.... *laughter and a red face ensued.
Reading this to a classroom full of 30 teenagers was not a good idea. I had to take a moment before we could continue on with the game. It was one of those moments that I will remember for a very long time. And I think I will also go in and change the way the question is written.
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
- Student pregnancies - miscarriages, and teen moms
- Depression - from the very scary kind - to the go get your nails done and you'll feel better.
- Being cursed at - you think of the word I've been called it. Most of the time it's as they are walking out the door.
- Students who have :
- lost a parent
- lost a friend
- lost a sibling
- lost their way
- lost their faith
- lost their hope
- Been told they are stupid - by a parent, teacher, friend, family member
- Had them cry in my classroom because it was the first time they felt safe enough to do so.
This is one of those issues that no professor can prepare you for. In the world of teaching some kids are going to love you - and others will wish for your slow and painful demise. I have had the fortunate ability to be the the teacher kids come to for help. This is a blessing in so many ways. It pushes me to be a better teacher - and more importantly a better person.
I always worry that I don't do enough and then I have day like today. When a student confides in me because she has faith that I will be able to help. She asked her friends who the best adult would be if she needed to go to someone. And all of them gave my name. I came home knowing that someones life is going to get better because I was able to help.
I wish that there was a way to teach how to do that but I don't know if there is.
Friday, November 27, 2009
Thanksgiving was awesome. The whole family was at my parents house to enjoy a feast of Turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, yams, green beans, bread, gravy, and pumpkin pie with whipped cream. My Uncle and cousin were able to make it out. I haven't seen Dylan in 5 years. And I don't know the last time we all had a family dinner together. Again, it was awesome.
Today I need to give the dog a bath. This is because she loves to dig in the yard. And because of the watery bit of our yard she has found that it's much more fun to dig in mud than it is to dig in dirt. This means I woke up to a very messy pup today. She looks so proud of herself - the face that says "but mom I was trying to keep you safe by digging up all the bugs." She loves to chase bugs. L.O.V.E.S. to chase bugs - she is amazed by moths - startled by spiders - and wild about worms.
I also have to give her a bath because tomorrow is the final day of puppy class. She will be completing all of her hard work and I want her to look nice. And smell good. She smells very dog like. And no one likes a stinky pup.
So I plan on grading papers and washing a dog. And trying to lengthen the day so that there doesn't seem like only two days left of my week off.
Sunday, November 22, 2009
Cooked some amazing dinner.
I got the idea from here
Slowcooker - I know you already love the plan.
3 frozen chicken breasts
1 packet dry italian seasoning
1 cup chicken stock
I also put two good glugs of our favorite balsalmic salad dressing.
Let cook for at least 3 hours on high so the chicken will cook.
After three hours add one can of cream of chicken soup and about a half a cup of sour cream.
Mix until all are blended. (Side note - before I added the soup and sour cream I took out the chicken breasts and cut them up into cubes.)
Boil rigatoni or penne pasta - cook until done then pour the chicken creamy yummyness over the pasta.
Today I went to Costco - picked up some paper towels and toilet paper. Then I made my way over to Barns and Nobel to pick up the next book club selection. This month we will be reading The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. I look forward to it.
I am now waiting for my banana bread to cool and enjoying the Sound of Music!
Sunday, November 15, 2009
I have become in love with bulbs. Planting them - waiting for them - seeing how hard they work underground just to head towards the sunlight. I think people need to be more like bulbs. Willing to put in the work to become something beautiful.
This is the garden on the side of my house. I have taken it upon myself to make it something amazing. Every couple of months I do something a bit new or different. This has been a slow process because there are always papers to grade. Like the stack I have right now waiting for me - but as you can see they'll have to wait a bit longer.
So A while back Costco had a bag of 50 bulbs for 12.99 - Gotta love Costco! So I couldn't resist that. Called my Gramma to make sure that Tulips liked it here in Temecula - she said they did and I was on my way home!
If you have a Winco near you - 1. You are very lucky 2. The people at Winco always seem a little strange which I truly enjoy 3. they are SO cheep! and for a girl on a budget - I love me some quality food at a very low price! 4. They have random items like - Bulbs for sale (2.49) and heeps of them. I could stood in front of the end-cap just staring. I'm sure there were some people who looked at me the same way I also look at the people in Winco.
I ended up getting Wood Hyacinths and Persian Blues. (The Daffodils came from Henry's - another amazing grocery story). I spent Veteran's Day out diggin' in my garden so that a few months from now I'll be able to see the efforts of my patients. You all will have to be patient as well, because as of today - no movement from the 70 bulbs in the ground.
Side note - I think that the word patients is terribly spelled. As a dyslexic - It may even be rude of the word patients to be spelled the way it is! So I say to you Patients - You are rude!
Saturday, November 14, 2009
For Example - I really wanted to put pictures up in the house - there was this wall in the family room that needed something going on... So we took a trip to the magical land of the Swedes and got some ideas.
Who wouldn't like to wake up to something like this in the morning!
This is the one I took my idea from.
So we loaded up our cart with picture frames,
And went home to create a picture wall!
Meg thought it was all very interesting! She was sad to see her hiding place disappear.
Here is our finished product! We picked some favorite family photos and are very pleased with our 'wall of love'.
Please ignore the mess on the table and the random cat toys!
For even more ideas please visit http://www.ikea.com/
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
"My grandfather ran off the V-2 rocket film a dozen times and then hoped that someday our cities would open up more and let the green and the land and the wilderness in more, to remind people that we're allotted a little space on earth and that we survive in that wilderness that can take back what it has given, as easily as blowing its breath on us or sending the sea to tell us we are not so big. When we forget how close the wilderness is in the night, my grandpa said, someday it will come in and get us, for we will have forgotten how terrible and how real it can be. You see?" Granger turned to Montag. "Grandfather's been dead for all these years, but if you lifted my skull, by God, in the convolutions of my brain you'd find the big ridges of his thumbprint. He touched me. As I said earlier, he was a sculptor. 'I hate a Roman named Status Quo!' he said to me. 'Stuff your eyes with wonder,' he said, 'live as if you'd drop dead in ten seconds. See the world. It's more fantastic than any dream made or paid for in factories. Ask no guarantees, ask for no security, there never was such an animal. And if there were, it would be related to the great sloth which hangs upside down in a tree all day every day, sleeping its life away. To hell with that,' he said, 'shake the tree and knock the great sloth down on his ass.'"
— Ray Bradbury
This is what we read in class today. I cry every time - Every Single Time. It makes me sad that there are students in my classroom that don't have a thumbprint. That there is no one to tell them that the world is better because they are in it. I try everyday to be the person that is different in that child's life. The person I want to be is someone who can be looked up to. I want to be the one who says it's cool not to do drugs or drink. That yes there is a way to have fun without being that bad kid and hang out with the wrong crowd.
I had a student today raise her hand and say "but Mrs. Parsons I'm just one person - Who's going to listen to just one person." I wanted to weep for her. I wish that there was a way to remind every single small person that one is a number that matters.
After my staff meeting today I got back to my computer and found an email from a student. She also lamented that she felt small and a bit lost - that she could not pinpoint someone who was her thumbprint. She apologised for making me take time out of my day to even read the email. It makes me so sad that there is a fear and an assumption that a teacher is only that for the hours of a school day.
My students are such thumbprints in my life. I told them this and they did the expected 'ahhh and oooo'. That's not my intention I don't want them to think I say things like this just to get that emotion out of them. It's purely the truth. I wish them the best in the world and that they get the best education I can give them. It's because I want them to be amazing humans. I need them to be great - because they are the people who are going to help me in my old age. These are the people who are going to be creating other human beings and if they are good parents those little people that they create will go on doing good.
I want to do good. I am reminded of this when I look at the students in my classroom. And it is my hope that I can continue to inspire others to do some good too.
Sunday, November 1, 2009
I want to make aprons for all of my friends for Christmas. I'm searching online to find the best one - then it's all about the fabric.
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
But the next day in class two girls stop by my desk and ask how I was able to send the emails. I tell them about this amazing new tool and they look at me then back at each other. The both of them say almost at the same moment "She cares! It made me feel like you really care about us"
I do care kiddos! I do care!!
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
The book is written from the Dogs perspective. I am looking forward to the adventure of understanding the world from a dogs viewpoint.
On another note - last week we added a dog to the Parsons home. It has been a big change - always asking her if she needs to go potty. Trying to get all of the little pieces of paper, cords, socks, shoes, cat toys and other puppy 'no, nos' up and away. She is a funny little dog who is learning how to take walks and sit and lay down. I had forgotten what it's like to have a puppy. they are a lot of work - but it's fun work!
There are a few that I use all the time and the kids always laugh. And I think they remember what we are discussing because I have heard the comment "remember when you said ... using that funny voice"
Here are some of the sure fire winners:
Teenage boy - think low voice, slow wording, and lots of rolling of the eyes.
Teenage girl - high pitched, lots of the word "like" and heaps of hair flips
Emu - this is my version of the teenager who is so bored by their life, I flip my hair into my eyes and slump my shoulders too.
I'm telling you start practicing in the car on the way to work and you will get their attention. That way when you do use your mean voice they will know you are being serious!
Friday, October 2, 2009
I dream of being queen of all the wild things. I would love to have a wild rumpus and then be able to sail back over a year and a through a month and end up where someone loves me most of all. The smell of something delicious is always drawing me back. The familiar life that keeps me happy - yet there is that willingness to have the adventure.
Today is Gandhi's Birthday. 140 - quite the mile stone. He is a man who wanted to better the world around him - to make his people worthy of support and a voice.
A voice that is now recognized around the world. So much so that people in a sleepy little town like Murrieta get to appreciate his legacy.
So what will be the legacy that is left behind by this generation? Will it be technology - war - peace - hope - destruction - madness - intelligence - beauty. I hope that it is something amazing. Something so profound that I can describe it in words.
So wild things - I'll keep on keeping on. And I hope you do too.
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
I'm older than you - I have spent more days on this planet - And I told you to do it, so you will.
These are the things I would like to say to my students when they drone on about how hard the work is and how they aren't going to grow up and be English teachers so why should they have to do this 'stupid work'.
But with a smile on my face and a song in my heart I turn to them and explain:
The state of California cares about your education and would like you to be successful in your future endeavors. And so they created a team of educators that put together standards that must be met at every level and class for students. By mastering these standards you then prove to the state that you can be a productive human and it will be a good idea to let you roam free in the outside world. If you don't complete these assignments then, from what I've heard, they keep you in High School FOREVER!!!!
I try and sound mean so that they believe me - if only for a moment. But in that brief moment in time when fear fills their eyes over the thought of staying in high school forever - I am truly happy. Because usually this means that they are willing to do the 'stupid assignment' that I gave them in the first place!!
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
What does it take to become a 21st Century learner? Tomorrow I will be having my Into to Ed kids make a list of all of the things that they think a student needs to know for the next generation. The class is designed to help students think about what happens next in education. We have been learning about how the classrooms of the past were conducted and how much of what happens in classrooms today is the same as it was 10, 2o, and even 30 years ago.
We have technology in our classrooms and all around us but many teachers don't know what to do with it. Heck most days I go back to the tried and true direct instruction. It's because integrating good technology is hard. It can't be thrown in. It shouldn't be used to just to be used but rather to enhance the educational process.
The grant program that I'm working on has the ability to get new netbooks (don't even ask me when they will get to us!!) - and I can't wait to be able to use them with my students. They are always asking when will we do this or that with the technology that got promised to them a while back. I am feeling the same way. I can't wait until I can get my hands on the tech toys that I too want to explore.
My plan for this weekend is to make a webquest... I'll let you know how it goes :)
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
I am in love with this book. I love teaching it - I love reading it - I love just looking at it. It has been two years since I have been able to teach it because I haven't had sophomores. This year I'm on the 10th grade team again.
George looks after Lennie in a way that all of us can relate too. There is always someone who we feel close to but we don't know why. Someone to protect and shelter from the big bad world.
One of the many reasons why I love teaching it is because it gives my students the opportunity to show empathy. They are not sure why they love the characters at first. At first glance they don't have much in common with two grown men working on a ranch in the 1930's. But as the story unfolds they begin to see the friendship that Lennie and George have built - and they find themselves in the text.
Not to mention that Steinbeck is a beautiful writer! So much so that I read my students the first paragraph and then have them draw what they see. It's a great imagery project and what 15 year old doesn't love to draw. I break out the 'colors' and away we go.
I read with enthusiasm - I do the voices - I whisper when called for - and hoot and holler when the characters do too. This does two things - it keeps me entertained as I read something multiple times during the week (This year I only have two sections of English II) - it also keeps the kids listening to what I'm talking about. They have an easier time keeping the characters straight too.
We are only 30 pages in but I am loving every second that I get to read this amazing novel. It has been banned across the nation and still draws great criticism. It deals with Sexism, Racism, Disability, Profanity, and Murder. That list of topics alone would turn many stomachs - but our district has been brave enough to let us teach it - and I am thankful!
Sunday, September 13, 2009
Sat on their park bench
A newspaper blown though the grass
Falls on the round toes
Of the high shoes
Of the old friends.
When I was small I had a best friend who I wanted to be like.
This picture was taken on Twin Day at school. My mom helped me get those signature bangs and we both had homemade t-shirts to wear. We used to joke that Carly was a little bit country and I was a little bit Rock and Roll. (Please notice that I'm in the acid wash denim - ohhh the late 80's). She was the first person I met at Sequoia Elementary school. A teacher saw that I was new and walked me over to meet her. We were instant friends.
During the summer between 4th and 5th grade we move to Temecula and away from everything that I had known. I made friends in my new school but there was something about Carly that was kinder, smoother, happier, than all of the kids out here.
So when I was clearing out some paperwork and stumbled upon the photo you see above I was overjoyed. Now after all of these years we have stumbled back into each others lives. Through the beauty of the internet I'm able to keep up with her on her own blog and see the amazing family she is raising.
I am thankful that I have the opportunity to know her as an adult- we still have so much in common. We both have amazing husbands, have degrees in English education, and are pleasantly living lives that fulfill us.
So my old friend. Thank you for those years long ago when we were young. And Thank you for all of the years ahead - I can't wait to see what comes next.
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Friday, September 11, 2009
Here is where I was in 2001.
Living in Flagstaff - loving college life. I was late for my desk shift early that Tuesday morning. I was supposed to sit at the desk from the hours of 7am to 10am. I ran down stairs and sat reading my book. Then I heard two people walk past me and say "We are all under attack - when will it stop". So I turned on the radio and began to listen. For three hours I could only imagine what was going on. I heard the announcers talk about a plane, and the World Trade Center, and how the towers fell. How it appeared that this was not an accident. So I continued to sit there in awe.
At 10 I went to my Spanish class. The TV was on in the classroom and so I was able to see what had happened. I didn't know how to think. I still don't know what to think. It is an experience that may not ever make sense. My professor told us to go home and call our families - to make sure everyone was okay and that we would progress as normal the next day.
I walked back to my dorm room and noticed that the sky seemed so quiet. Everything was just so quiet.
It's hard to put down in to words what that day was like. Today my students and I discussed the after affects of the 9/11 attacks. It was interesting to hear how they remember the day. These kids were around the age of 8 when this happened. So strange to think about it.
So this week we had Monday off. We did some laundry and got ready for the week.
- Tuesday was back to school night
- Wednesday was a late start and we had to work in our PLC (professional -learning - community) and that didn't go as well as we hoped. There is one person who is "in charge" of us and that person came in and sent us all into a tail spin.
- Thursday was a rally day so the kids were all excited about life - and not so much about learning.
- Today I felt like there was not enough time in the day. That and after lunch I felt ready to go home. I sometimes wonder if there was a way for me to grade papers in my sleep. It would be so nice to just wake up and have a nice little pile of graded essays.
This weekend I need to grade heeps of papers. HEEPS! but I do plan on enjoying time with the hubby and meg the cat - so it should make for a good weekend.
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
I'm not sure how far this will go but I hope it fizzles in the wind.
*shakes my head and frowns*
Back to School Night went well. I did make a few jokes that no one laughed at. But that can be expected. I had a few parents who said really nice things like "My kid has never talked about a class the way he talks about yours - and he normally hates English"
And then there was the moment that teachers dream of. I see this parent and a former student coming my way - He is an awesome kid and his Mom was super supportive last year. They walk into my classroom Mrs. R gives me a big hug and then says to the entire room of parents who are starring at me like I'm crazy for hugging this woman.
Mrs. R points to the crowd "You have no idea how lucky you are to have Mrs. Parsons as a teacher, She is amazing, Best teacher ever!"
Me - smiles and says thanks.
It was AWESOME! *Grins a happy grin*
Monday, September 7, 2009
But parents are different. They want to know who they are dealing with. And this tall funny young woman - girl to many of them - is not as hart warming as they would like to think. But there are those parents who have met me before and they make the room warm and full of the smiles that ease my mind.
So here I go for tomorrow - it will be a long night!
Saturday, September 5, 2009
I teach in a portable building and so our alarms go off about 45 seconds after the rest of the schools. I say to my kids - "where are my keys - grab all of your stuff" - they look at me like they are a bit confused and then the ear splitting sounds begins in my room as well. So I grab my little red clip board - my keys - my M114 sign (we got these last year after an Eagle Scout took it on for his project. Now every classroom has a sign to hold up so students know where their teachers are) - but I neglected to grab my sunglasses. We walk out to the parking lot where we are to wait until the all clear. Then we wait. My students ask me what happens if the drill goes past 2:30 - and I assure them that it's probably just the foods room going a bit over board and we will be back to work momentarily. I was wrong. So wrong. So we continue to sit - and after ten minutes a student runs up to me -
"Mrs. Parsons, I just got a text from my friend and they said that the history department is on fire" -K
"K - I am sure that this is not the case, but there might be a building that's not doing to well" - me
"Oh Mrs. Parsons you know what I mean, wait I just got another text, yeah the air conditioning system is on fire" - K
"Well then, looks like this might take a bit longer than we thought" - me
My brain is thinking, I really hope this isn't true because it's 98 degrees outside and the blacktop is not helping. So we continue to wait... 15 more minutes. The other teachers are now beginning to walk around asking - what do we do if it goes past 2:30 we'll have a riot on our hands, the Friday of a three day weekend. And sure enough as the minutes ticked away, we began to see the natives get restless. They began to move towards the gates and murmur about what was taking so long.
2:30 - no movement
2:31 - nothing
2:32 - adults begin to look at each other and wonder
2:33 - zilch
2:34 - now we are beginning to complain
2:35 - we get the all clear - 3,400 children cheer!
I go back to my classroom and am sad that I lost the last 30 minutes of what was going to be a great lesson. But this is part of the joy of education. So I grabbed my purse, locked my door, and headed out for my own three day weekend. - I also had to take the 60 essays I have to grade too.
After a few hours of being at home I get a call on my cell phone from our fearless leader Mr. D -our Principal. It turns out that there was a problem with an air conditioning unit and sure enough there were some sparks that lead them to evacuate the school. He was sorry for the inconvenience at the end of school but that everyone had handled the situation with "Class, the Bronco way".
My Goodness what a start to a long weekend!
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
Today in my Expo class we were discussing the Rhetorical Triangle and how authors have to focus on audience in order to ultimately achieve their purpose. I was talking about devices that authors use in order to achieve these goals and talked about Ethos, Pathos and Logos.
Now I would love to say that I too learned about these things in high school but sadly, I did not. I wish I had because it would have made College a lot easier. I had professors talking about Pathos all the time and I had no clue what they were talking about. So slowly I was able to figure out what was going on and with the help of a little thing called the Internet off I went!
So today when I had a student who raised their hand and asked the question "thethos, mathos what?" I took the time to provide them with a 'teachable moment' - we took about 10 minutes to explain what the words mean and how authors use them to produce an emotion from their audience.
So for those of us who have forgotten or maybe never covered this in HS.
Logos - appeal to Logic - encourages the audience to think
Pathos - appeal to emotions - encourages the audience to have emotions
Ethos - establishing credibility - appealing to the ethical views of the audience
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
So today - we covered imagery in my English II class. We have been studying short stories and I wanted them to review the stories we have covered. I gave each student a piece of paper and had them make a movie poster for one of the stories. I got some really awesome artwork - other kids sat and tried to pick their nose. The goal is for them to use the imagery and produce a piece of work that reviews their own reading and understanding of the text.
In Expo we finished the play The Crucible. We covered how Proctor wants to keep his name and protect his children from the problems that would fall upon them if he had let the paper he signed be pinned on the door for all the town to see. The kids are not happy with how the play ends. I tried to tell them that it is indicative of the time period it was written in. After that they seemed a bit happier - but they are all mad that Abby gets away with it. I can't say that they blame them.
Because I'm on block schedule - tomorrow is the same thing all over again!
Thursday, May 21, 2009
RESEARCH PAPERS - I have been mental - absolutely crazy grading massive amounts of research papers. some of them were really good. and it makes me feel like a much better teacher when i read those ones. And then there are the those that make me want to rip out my eyes because they have not paid one once of attention to what i have taught them for 10 weeks. Let alone all of the work we did last semester. But one good thing is that i only found one paper that plagiarised. I know that doesn't sound like a 'good thing' but in years previous i have found 4 or 5. So i think i'm getting through to them.
I have been busy with being the senior class advisor. In the next three weeks i have the following events.
28th - presidents farewell - ASB banquet
29th - 5 year wedding anniversary
6th - Casey gets into town - she stays overnight
7th - Senior reflections from 5pm to 7 - then at 7 I need to get over to the Crystal Apple awards that i have been nominated for. (Third year in a row !!)
8th - Senior Luau - from 5 to 8
9th - Senior Scholarship night
10th - Gradnight Disneyland
12th - Graduation - ball my eyes out when i watch those wonderful kids that i've known the last for years walk across the stage and enter that new phase of their lives.
It's hard to believe that i'm so looking forward to the 12th but at the same time it could stay so far away. I am unable to believe that it's been 4 years. I have been pulling my hair out thinking about what i am going to say at the senior reflections night. Nicole and I have to get up and speak to them from the advisers perspective. How do i tell them that i have loved watching them grow and learn and change into the joyful and intelligent people they are today. After all i have known some of these students now since they were 13 - now their 17 and 18 year old young adults. i know that I'm going to sit down and write multiple multiple copies and revisions of what i will say. but that's because i want to get it right. i want them to know how much they have changed my life.
I must search for the words... always in search for the words.
Friday, May 1, 2009
Thursday, April 30, 2009
Friday, April 10, 2009
Or this lovely one. Sunny really loves daisies and would like to have mason jars on the tables. We also thought that it would be cool to add cut limes into the jars.
On Monday we will be going with her to the wedding site to help get ideas about flowers and how to make the place very 'Sunny and Dan'. After having been together for 10 years we can't wait to help them celebrate!!!
Wednesday, April 8, 2009
One of the exciting things about being on spring break (or any break from school for that matter) is going out with my friends to the karaoke bar at pchang. I don't like the fact that smoking is allowed but it's a small price to pay. It's a few great hours with friends, laughter, and there is always one great crazy person.
Last night was no exception. There was a woman who decided that she was going to dance and dance .... and then dance some more. This was not nice calm dancing, no this was an out of control dancing queen. Two girls got up to sing some 80's rap song (i don't even remember what song) and this strange dancing queen - we'll call her DQ for fun - got out on the floor and got her groove on. There was an older man who decided he wanted to dance with her and so DQ started rubbing and loving all over this guy. We were peeing our pants we were laughing so hard. It was as if the music was just making her crazy.
At one point DQ decided to take her top shirt off. We couldn't help by laugh more because the undershirt she had on barely covered her bra. So there we were sitting trying very hard not to point and laugh. But we did a little bit. How could we not. Here we were looking at DQ in all her glory and so we sat and smiled and laughed.
What a wonderful evening.
Friday, April 3, 2009
I love that the school district made spring break so late this year. I know that it was a long long time in between breaks. and now there will be a solid two weeks where I have very little expected of me. And I'm so okay with that.
What I'm really looking forward to is working on this project for the Holocaust remembrance day on April 21st. I have been working on a grant for school and was able to obtain some very cool tools. There is a program called Captivate (Adobe) and it has a lot of cool capabilities that I am looking forward to playing with. I want to be able to present to my students the voices of history that have been silenced and the voices of today that continue not to be heard.
It's giong to be a great adventure.
Monday, March 23, 2009
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
It is the way we cite sources - and ultimatly format papers so that plagarism is left far far behind. For me I have come to love the beast. I know - I know I'm a freak of nature. I like teaching the research project. (please have me commited)
Saturday, March 7, 2009
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Monday, February 16, 2009
Sunday, February 15, 2009
I can remember that while we were growing up my mom had given us toys for both genders - Evan had a doll and I had toy cars. Evan took of their heads and used them as bombs : ) - while I used the cars to drive my dollies to the store. My mom didn't let us have toys that had anything to do with violence (something I very much believe in) and Evan felt that he was missing out - so he took a piece of cheddar cheese and bit pieces out to shape it into a gun. He has always been all boy. Not only this but he has been a ladies man his whole life. His first love was a girl named Amy - he came home from preschool and was so tired from the day that he fell asleep - as he drifted off he called her name Amy Amy Amy. We joke that this is in part because he was born on Valentines day.
Once Evan went to school and the children were learning about dates and birthdays - Evan said his was on Valentines and the teacher scolded him because he didn't say February 14th. That woman was a mental case anyway.
He has a tender heart that brother of mine. He has always been able to empithize with those around him. He has the ability to see someone and take their life into his mind and ponder what it would be like to be them. I admire this very much about him.
He is also a jokester. We spent our youth with smiles on our faces. Much of the time it is due to the jokes that he makes.
Saturday, February 14, 2009
Saturday, February 7, 2009
Thursday, February 5, 2009
a real conversation - i wouldn't lie to you about this.
me - and so when we look at Montag we can see that he is missing something from his life
boy - it's windy outside
girl - it's gonna rain
me- kiddos let's focus - B why don't you explain what Montags conflict is
boy #2 - i heard it's gonna rain all day tomorrow
girl #2 - i heard it's was supposed to rain at no
me - focus children focus - yes i heard it's going to rain - let's get back to the book
this is the kind of day people think about when they picture a high school classroom. half of my students were looking out the window waiting for the sky to fall. the other 25% were paying attention to me and the rest were looking at the clock praying for the day to be over.
and then there was the moment that makes me say "yes i can come back to work tomorrow and deal with these pumpkins" this boy (not one from the earlier conversation) comes up to me after class and says
' hey mrs. parsons that lesson today was really cool. it totally made me think about what it would be like in that world that the characters live in'
and then there were the words that make me jump up and do a happy dance.
"thank you" he smiles and tells me to have a good weekend.
I know I will :)
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
Friday, January 23, 2009
so you might be wondering what are these strange children talking about. they are making a connection to lord of the flies that they all read last year as sophomores. i almost let them run down the way to the other classroom to prove that when you call a meeting people do show up. but then i thought better of it. but i sat there laughing my butt off thinking that here is this group of 30+ kids all wishing they could act out a book. i adore my little nerds. they do work so hard. so after that moment when i tried to go back to the book it was just too much. so for the last 10 min of class we just sat around and laughed. i do think it's moments like these that make my life so good. not many people get to laugh that hard in a cubicle. :)
Thursday, January 22, 2009
it's these moments that i'm so glad that i don't teach 3rd graders.
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Monday, January 19, 2009
But it is a wicked web I weave. This is the plan for the week. Because Today was Dr. King day we had the day off so tomorrow we begin the journey head first.
- To the Library to pick up the wonderful F451 by Bradbury.
- We come back and pick research topics - we go over all 10 options and students pick what they would like to spend the next 8 weeks learning about.
- 'When they give you ruled paper, write the other way' begin the conversation about the novel we are reading. I love this conversation becuase it shakes some students out of their little world. They can't imagine a world where they don't have structure. mmmm I love opening that can of worms.
- The first paragraph. Students will read the first paragraph and their homework will be to draw the first paragraph - a literal representation of the text.
- Their other piece of homework is to write me a paragraph about why they want to write about their topic and what they hope to learn from it.
- Turn in Homework
- A quickwrite - The week America Changed - no matter how students felt about the results of the election it is very important for them to reflect on what has happened and how history has changed because of President Barack Obama
- Begin reading the novel - go over the idea of science fiction.
- a couple of journals
add in some jokes about farting and falling down and you pretty much can see what my life is like
I know that there are things that will not be fixed by President Obama. But it must be a time when all Americans - come together to say that the government must listen to it's people. And it is also time that Americans must let their voices be heard. We can not stand silent any more.
I can't wait for Tomorrow!