Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Show, Not Tell

I thought I would dig into my past tonight and share a lesson I taught my seventh and eighth grade students when their writing looked something like this:
            I was mad, so I stomped up the stairs and slammed the door.  I told my mom to leave
            me alone.  My room was a mess.  I walked over everything and laid on the bed.
Not much effort went into this writing.  They were just writing bare bones.  I wanted them to dig deeper and help me, as the reader, create a vivid image in my mind.  One of my favorite strategies to help students create vivid images with their writing is "Show, Not Tell."  I modeled the strategy for them first making sure to think aloud what I was writing and why.  To practice this strategy, I would give them a statement like "My room is a mess."  They had to show me the room was a mess without using those words.  Then we would take one piece of their writing and choose one sentence that they could develop and show me without telling me.

This was the strategy that really got my students using their writer's notebooks.  One of the independent menu choices was always "write in your writer's notebook." Very few of them would write anything that could be later turned into a longer piece or be used in a longer piece.  I changed the independent menu to say, "write in your writer's notebook using a strategy we have used in class."  Under that statement I would list the strategies that we used.  More students started using their writer's notebooks to write show, not tell passages.  They always wanted to share those writing snippets when it was share time at the end of the period.

Click on the picture below to be taken to my lesson for Show, Not Tell.  I included in the file:  Common Core Standards for sixth, seventh, and eighth grade; two versions of the lesson plan (one is my exact lesson plan and the other has blanks where my examples were so you can write your own examples).

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Favorite Things Sunday

Glad that you have joined me!  Every Sunday I share some of the best ideas I have found throughout the week.  Today I am adding a little personal touch as it is serving as my Slice of Life also.

Slice of Life - The End of Spring Break
I am mourning the end of Spring Break today.  Well, it's not quite that bad, but I will miss sleeping late (my favorite part of Spring Break week).  Spring Break ended with a bang for me because I went to The Hunger Games in IMAX on Saturday and I LOVED it.  The books are amazing, and the movie was fantastic.  As always, I miss the things left out, but they did not detract from the story told on the screen at all.  I liked seeing the behind the scenes of running the Hunger Games, which was not in the book.  I don't want to give too much away for those that haven't read the books or seen the movie.  The only minus I would give to the movie was the shaky camera work at the beginning.  My husband and I talked about it and we think that it was done to show the sense of urgency; that today was reaping day and everything could change in a second if your name is called.  In IMAX, it made me a little motion sick.  On a smaller screen, maybe the effect wouldn't have been so bad.

Tomorrow it is full steam ahead with my lovely first graders.  We are working on improving our style when we write.  I am going to be sharing some of my lesson plans with you and hopefully some pictures of my students' wonderful writing.  We are on our way to make great writing even better.  Stay tuned for:  writing better sentences and show, not tell.  If anyone has any ideas on what writing sentences and show, not tell should look like in preschool, I would really appreciate it.  As part of my job, I have to break these strategies down and show what they should look like at each level (from preschool to third grade).

Solving Complicated Problems
Math Coach's Corner shared a great freebie that shows a way she has found successful in helping her students solve multi-step problems. Click on her blog button to be taken to the post.

Book Recommendation Tree
Lessons with Laughter shared one way she has her student recommend books to each other.  Each book recommendation is written on a laminated tag and hung on the book recommendation tree.  When the student is ready to recommend another book, the tag is erased and written on again.  Click on her blog button to see pictures of her tree.

Lessons with Laughter

Fluency Poster
What the Teacher Wants created fabulous fluency posters as part of the process to help her students improve their fluency.  She also shares two other resources from other teacher bloggers that she finds useful.  Click on her blog button to be taken to the fluency poster.


Trash or Treasure?
Chalk Talk shared a great literacy center called Trash or Treasure.  Students are given a container filled with waded pieces of paper.  Then students are asked to read each paper and decide if it is a real or nonsense word.  She also shares variations on this center as well as pictures.  Check her out by clicking her button below.

Chalk Talk

I hope you have enjoyed "A Few of My Favorite Things" and come back each Sunday to see what other fabulous finds I have gathered for your enjoyment and to add to your resources.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Creating a Picture Book

Cleaning my office this week, I found one of my old writer's notebooks, so I thought I would share with you one of the stories from it.  Back in 2007, I was teaching 7th and 8th grade literacy.  One of the writing projects we did was to write a picture book based on Cynthia Rylant's book When I Was Young in the Mountains.  Once we finished our books, we went down to the lower elementary and read them.  Each of my students was paired with a first grade student.

 I was (and still am) teaching at rural school, so most of us started our books with "when I was young in the country."  I was raised in the country also.  I did have a few kids who grew up in the city and moved to the country in middle school, so they started their books "when I was young in the city."
  • To begin writing, we brainstormed a list of things we did when we were young. We kept in mind the events that Rylant chose to include in her book and why we thought she included those when making our lists.  I had read the book and we made connections to the book.  Then we talked about why she wrote about the events in the book.
  • From that list we picked a top ten that we could write a few sentences about and illustrate.  I had them highlight their top ten choices. 
  • Once we had our top ten, we wrote a rough draft.
  • The draft was revised and edited (peer and teacher).
Then we each created our own picture books.
  • I bought report covers that had page protectors already inside so they could have their own book.
  • They created a cover and copyright page.  The cover had to have title, image, and author.  The copyright page was optional.
  • Each page had to have text and a picture.  They had choice about where the text was, but I had a few mini-lessons on text placement in picture books.
I wish I would have copied a few to keep. They were all excited to have written their own book.
As my students were doing this, I was modeling every step of the way.  I can't find the final copy of mine, but I do have my rough draft from the writer's notebook I found.

When I was Young in the Country

Pg. 1
When I was young in the country, I helped my dad raise pigs so my family would have meat in the freezer.  My dad told me not to name the pigs.  Their names were Bob, Joe, and Tim.  I cried when they were taken to the butcher.

Pg. 2
My best friend, Lori, and I built tree houses on the ground out of fallen down tiny pine trees.  We stacked them up and leaned them against large pine trees.

Pg. 3
When I was young in the country, my brother and I would go swimming in the creek down the road.  We would catch tadpoles by building little dams made out of peebles around the tadpole.

Pg. 4
When I was young in the country, I would play on the hay bales of the guy next door.  He would place all the rolls in a line.  Jump, Jump, Jump! From bale to bale.

Pg. 5
I drank fresh milk every morning for breakfast.  I went with my dad to watch him milk a cow by hand for our milk.

Pg. 6
When I was young in the country, we didn't have a dryer, so my chore was to hang the clothes on the line using clothespins.  The sun and the wind did the same job as the dryer.

Pg. 7
My house was surrounded by a thick growth of pine and oak trees with lots of underbrush.  What great fun we had playing hide-n-seek.  "1-2-3-4-10, here I come!"

Pg. 8
I liked to ride mountain bikes when I was younger.  We lived on a dirt road which made for a bumpy ride.

Pg. 9
When I was young in the country, I went fishing with my family.  Catfish is my favorite.

Pg. 10
When I was young in the country, I wanted, with all my heart, to live in the city.

Pg. 11
Now that I live in the city as a grown up, I long for the country again.

Thanks to The Two Writing Teachers for hosting the annual Slice of Life Story Challenge.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Thinking Tweets

Perusing Twitter this afternoon, I found a few tweets that really got me thinking.  (I am more a twitter stalker than tweeter myself.)

So very true.  Technology is a wonderful gift in the classroom.  However, without the knowledge of what to do with that tech, the tech itself is worthless.  On the other hand, all the PD in the world does no good if the teacher will not use the technology.  The old adage, use or lose it applies very well to technology.  If you don't use it, you will not remember how to use it.

How would the teachers in your school react if all the textbooks suddenly disappeared?  In my elementary school, I don't think most teachers would notice.  The social studies and science teachers would.  Maybe teachers would miss the math textbooks in 6th and 7th grade.  I think in our high school though they would be greatly missed and some would not know what to do at first.  My personal opinion closely relates to the last two tweets about science.  I believe that many times reliance on the textbook takes the discovery out of science, the discovery out of any subject.  When I first started teaching, I taught social studies to 7th and 8th graders and relied heavily on the textbook, but I quickly realized that there were more great resources than my textbook.  From then on, I used the textbook as a guide and supplemented heavily with outside resources.  I wish I had access to the resources there are online now ten years ago.  I am now working with little ones (prek to third grade) but find all kinds of great middle school resources now.  Makes me wish I was teaching those kids again.

What do you think about textbooks?  Like them, hate them, somewhere in between?  I definitely fall in the in between category.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Favorite Things Sunday

Glad that you have joined me!  Every Sunday I share some of the best ideas I have found throughout the week.  I missed last Sunday, so I am combining two weeks. 

A Few of the Slices I Loved...
I would like to feature some of the slices that really spoke to me in the last two weeks.  There are around 200 people participating in the challenge.  I wish I had the time to read all of them because the ones I do are always wonderful.  Exposing a piece of your soul every time you write is very personal and can be a bit scary when put out there for everyone to read.

Multiple writers gave personalities to ideas:   
  • The Voice of Winter by Coffee Filled Musings - She gave winter a very distinct voice and I was able to fully visualize winter having a conversation.
  • "Writing waits for me." by Birds and Trees of the Mind - Writing becomes a person who is waiting for him in a coffee shop.

Whale Tales by Teacher Girl Talk - First graders say the funniest things.  I laughed out loud.

Wonder Box by Keep in Touch - She writes about how she uses a card catalog.  I would love to use this idea in my classroom.

Writing Treasure by Pondering Preschool - A fantastic poem that would serve as great writing invitation for students.

I learned about myself by Just for a month - She shares a slice of life from a nine year old...a very vivid piece of writing where the student describes the teacher.  One of my favorite lines:  "walks like a butterfly."

Confidence by She Writes Because... - She tries a different type of poetry inspired by Bob Raczka.  She gives step by step guide for how she wrote her poem.

Slicing Away
Gaining confidence in sharing my writing with others is one of the greatest gifts of the Slice of Life Challenge hosted by the Two Writing Teachers each March.  I have received the best encouragement from other slicers and I have had the greatest slices to gather inspiration from.  


Slicing about life
Gives energy.

Reading slices
Gives inspiration.

Commenting on slices
Gives encouragement.

Math Talk Strategy
Mrs. Lyons from Thinking of Teaching shared a great strategy that had her students talking about math in a kid-friendly way.  She used a strategy called Picture Talk.  This is how she explains it:  "The idea is that it helps students who may not be comfortable expressing their ideas in writing or in conversation, instead they can show their understanding in a picture."  Once the students have shown their understanding she uses two different colors to highlight glowing understanding (demonstrated understanding of the concept) and growing understanding (misconceptions or mistakes).  Click on her blog button below to be taken the post.  She provides her example and student work to really show you this strategy in action.

Set Up for Success
Third Graders, Dreaming Big shared ways to help set up students for success on the days of the "BIG" test.  One of my favorite was the Encouraging Snacks.  She sent home brown paper bags that were labeled before test and after test.  She asked parents to fill the bags with a healthy snack and an encouraging note for their child before the test and a fun snack and encouraging note for after the test.  I am thinking how could my teachers do this for their students.  I am going to share the idea with my teachers and see what they can come up with.  To see a picture of the bags and the parent note she sends home to explain, click on the image below.

New Blogs
Math's Coach's Corner has a great page on her blog called "Blog Hop."  Go there (by clicking on her blog button below) and check out a bunch of great blogs.  They are arranged by grade level.  Also you can add your blog.

I hope you have enjoyed "A Few of My Favorite Things" and come back each Sunday to see what other fabulous finds I have gathered for your enjoyment and to add to your resources.

Saturday, March 17, 2012


So I feel like a slacker.  I missed the deadline for adding my slice on Day 15.  Yesterday, I didn't even get the chance to slice.  But I am here today to get back on the horse.  :)   Since I am on the theme of slacking, that really describes my day today.  I am at the beginning of Spring Break and not really feeling like doing much. 

My husband and I got up early to go buy a car today.  His poor VW Beetle has run its course.  We have had that car for eleven years.  It has traveled 300,000 miles.  It just has the tiny problem of not wanting to run when it rains.  With spring starting, that is becoming a huge problem when my husband is trying to get to work.  So today we got up early and went to Nissan.  We test drove the car last night but wanted to think about it.  It was so easy and quick.  We have never had a car buying experience like this before.  It really has me thinking about going back when it is time for my new car.

Then we came home and I need a nap.  I am not a morning person, at all.  That is one of the hard parts of teaching, school starts so early.  We have to be at school at 7:40 in the morning.  Yuck!!  After my nap, I have been having a Twilight movie marathon.  Go ahead and laugh, but I love Twilight.  I have read the books and watched every movie when it was in the theaters.  I am eagerly awaiting the final movie.  And here I sit writing this post and watching Breaking Dawn.

Not an exciting day or post.  I really need to step it up in the blog department, definitely one of goals for Spring Break (besides the napping and catching up on TV).

Thursday, March 15, 2012


Today was a weird day.  I got a lot done at school, but I felt like I was going in circles and not really accomplishing anything.  Is it because there is only one more day before Spring Break?  Is it because I have a ton of things that need to be done but don't know where to start?  I really just felt out of sorts.  Ever have days like that?

Right now I am working on a lesson plan for my first graders to help them write a complete sentence.  We have been working on a 4-square (we call it 5 square) graphic organizer for weeeeeks.  Now it is time to take what we have in our organizer and write a paragraph.  Half my class decided this meant to copy exactly what was in organizer on to the paper.  Half the class wrote half way decent sentences.  Problem - not enough modeling and guided practice.  Tomorrow we are going to work on it one sentence at a time.  I will post my lesson plan and the organizers I created (with the help of some wonderful teacher bloggers out there) to make writing sentences a more concrete process.  I will share some pictures of the students working also.   Tomorrow is also one of my evaluations for the year.  This one is completed by the principal.  2:00 pm on Friday, the last day before Spring Break. Whew! I told him that it would be fine though.  I can do this.  The kids can do this.  I will just keep telling myself this.

Did you see the mention of Spring Break? Yes, it starts on Monday!!!! I love my school.  I love my teachers.  I love my students.  I still need the break to rejuvenate and recharge to finish the school year strong.  I don't have many plans.  I just want some time to do the things I like doing - blogging, reading, more reading, maybe a visit to the zoo (Memphis now has dinosaurs!).

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Lesson Analysis Part 1

During my recent conference, I attended a great double session on lesson analysis.  The beginning of the session had us read a short article (I believe that was put together by the presenters) and write a summary.

After being inspired by She Writes Because, I decided to reread the short article and write a found poem.  The article was a great introduction to the purpose of using Backward Design, which was the basis for the session.  The poem is okay.  I am not sure about it.  I am definitely going to come back to it, but I thought I would share my first try.

What are your thoughts on writing a found poem using a nonfiction text?

Tuesday, March 13, 2012


For slice number 13 (my lucky number as I was born on the thirteenth), I am sharing a little bit about myself in this moment through Farley's Currently.

Farley from Oh' Boy 4th Grade has her monthly "Currently" linky up. I am really late to the party this month.  (When I added my link I was the 144th blogger to link up.)  But here is mine.  Make sure to go check out everyone else's and link up yourself.

My 3 Words (words that describe me but have to start with the same letter as my last name):
WARM - I hope that my students would describe me as warm.  I love each and every one of them, even the difficult ones.  I hope I portray that and show them every day.  Honestly, they are first graders so who know what they would say.
WILLING - I am willing to help my friends in any way that I can, that includes my online friends as well.
WILLFUL - My family would definitely describe me as willful.  I wanted to make my own way in the world from early on in my life.

Monday, March 12, 2012

A Slice of Reflection

Slice #12 - A Reflection

I have written more slices than I did last year!  That is part of my goal for this month.  Honestly, many of them haven't been very good slices, but I have written every day.  The second part of my goal is to reflect more.  After reading Reflection from Two Writing Teachers, I thought this would be a good time to think about where I am in this challenge.

Slice number ten was barely a paragraph, but it did describe the most challenging part of this for me - being stuck...not knowing how to get the words to the page (or screen).  It is a constant struggle for me.  I can definitely imagine how my students feel when I ask them to write and they just look at me with blank expressions on their faces.  My favorite slice so far was my poem that described my day in Los Angeles before my conference started.  For my first attempt at poetry, I was pleased.  I wanted to express how busy I felt the city to be but how peaceful I felt at the end of the day.

The comments I have received have been so kind and encouraging in what I consider a scary process - putting your writing, a little bit of your soul, on display for all to read.  I also think after I hit publish, "Will anyone read this?  Will anyone comment?"  I feel very fortunate to part of the writing community The Two Writing Teachers have built.  I have read and been inspired by really great writing!  I try to comment on three to five slices every day.   I wish I had the time to comment on every person's slice that is participating in this challenge.  I haven't been able to the last few days because of the no internet (besides phone).  I'm glad to be back home so I can catch up.

Where to go from here?  I know that I must keep writing.  I hate to admit this (especially as one of the subjects I teach is writing), but I don't have a writer's notebook at this time (I have had them in the past).  I need one.  I need a place to get some ideas started.  I need a place to hold ideas for future pieces.   What shape does your writer's notebook take?

Wait. Fly. Drive. Home.

I am finally home from my wonderful conference trip.  Here is a synopsis of my day:

wake. pack. taxi. wait. eat. wait. wait. fly. fly. fly. wait. wait. plane. wait. fly. fly. fly. fly. fly. (this part seemed to take forever!) wait. wait. ride. ride. drive. drive. drive. drive. drive. (another part that seemed to take forever). hug. email. blog. hug. sleep (next on the agenda).

I love that I have complete access to the internet again! I think I may be addicted and have been going through slight withdrawals. :)

I will be posting soon about what I learned at the conference.  For now, it is time to sleep. sleep. sleep.

Saturday, March 10, 2012


Today I am stuck. I don't know what to write about. I have learned a lot at the conference but I am still processing the information. I want to be able to write about in a coherent way. Right now the thoughts are still swirling around my head. I am excited about what I have learned and I will be sharing with everyone on my blog in future posts. What do you do when you can't get the words in your head on paper?

Friday, March 9, 2012

From Seeds to Apples

I am in Los Angeles this week attending the TAP Conference with a team from my school. I love attending this. I love attending this conference. I have been lucky enough to be able to attend for two years in a row. Last year was our planning year for TAP so I didn't know much of anything when we came. I learned a ton of information about TAP and what my responsibilities were going to be. This year I hoped I would learn just as much after implementing TAP for almost a year. And I have learned much!

Two lines stuck out for me today during some of the general sessions.

"TAP will not let the fire die." - Edmund Alarcio, Master Teacher
He was speaking about how he would go to conferences and get great ideas. He would go back to his class with every intention of implementing. Then reality struck and the ideas were pushed to the back burner. The fire died. With TAP the fire is continuously feed through leadership support for the master and mentor teachers who provide the support for the career teachers. The fire doesn't die because we meet once a week to continue learning and discussing student work. We are continually learning and analyzing what is working and why and what is not working and why. I know that I will take what I learn back to my leadership team and my teachers so we can continue to grow.

"You can count the number of seeds in an apple, but you can't count the number of apples that will come from the seeds." - Senator Howard McKeon, 25th district of California
When I heard him say this, I thought about how important it is to nurture our students academically. We have to do more than just plant the seed of knowledge in our students. We have to nurture that knowledge so it grows and produces. Do I nurture my students or do I stifle that growth? I will be keeping this question in mind as I plan future lessons.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Day in the City


People, cars, buses, and cabs
honking, swerving, running red lights

tar pits, farmer's market, the Grove

People, cars, buses, and cabs
honking, swerving, running red lights

Hollywood sign, movie studios, the Chinese Theater
celebrity footprints

People, cars, buses, and cabs
honking, swerving, running red lights

last view of the ocean
last meal of the day

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Green, Red, and Blue

I am doing a combo post today, so stick with me.  I am starting with a fabulous St. Patrick's Day Blog Hunt and ending with my daily Slice of Life.  What do you think the colors green, red, and blue mean?

 Top of the Morning Blogging Friends!  Play a fun blog hunt with me by following the shamrocks on different blogs each day until Saint Patrick's Day. You will see lots of great blogs along the way, discover some great ideas for your classroom, and pick up some free materials.  May the “Luck of the Irish” be with you!  We started on March 1 and will have a big finish on March 17th.  Along the way you will gather a variety of free resources.  Look for the shamrocks to guide you along the way!

Today I am sharing stop 7 with Michelle from Dilly Dabbles.  Make sure to check her out also!

I am sharing with you today some St. Patrick's Day picture writing prompts.  I love using picture prompts because it helps the students who need that visual element to get started.  My students always loved seeing the picture and taking off from there.  I projected the writing prompt and gave the students around ten minutes to write.  I liked to use them as bell ringer/morning work to get the kids settled and thinking.  A great start to the day or class period.  Another way I have used them is during during group work.  I printed the writing prompts out and put them in envelopes.  Each group was allowed to pick an envelope.  Sometimes I would let them trade with one group and sometimes it was just luck of the draw. 

I have put all the writing prompts together in one download with different types of writing paper and a set of the same writing prompts with white background.  To get all the writing prompts in one packet, click on the first picture.

I would love to hear about the stories your students create if you use these prompts.

The next stop on your journey is (click on the four leaf clover):

Make sure to check her blog tomorrow to see what she has to offer for the blog hunt and where to go next.

To find any previous stops on the hunt, you can visit each of the following blogs or go to our Pinterest board.  Following the board means that you will never miss a stop!

March 1 Mrs. Jump's Class
March 2 A Modern Teacher
March 3 Sharing Kindergarten and Kindergarten Smiles
March 4 Mrs. Lirette's Learning Dectectives
March 5 Raki's Rad Resources
March 6 A Special Kind of Class

The journey continues with our school rebuilding spirits (and classrooms) after the preschool fire
I am sad today because I am not there to be with my teachers as they start the new adventure of a new building.  The students came back today.  I don't know how it is going, but I am waiting on updates.  I am on my way to Los Angeles for a TAP Conference with a group from my school.  I am looking forward to the conference, but my heart is with my teachers.  I will keep everyone updated on how it is going as soon as I get updates.

Did you figure it out?  Green, red, and blue????  Thanks for hanging with me on such a long post!  Don't forget to check stop 8 on the blog hunt and come back here tomorrow for a new slice of life.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Fire...Cry...Begin Again

Today was a better day.  The preschool teachers went shopping and bought a few things to start the day tomorrow with students. The teachers rallied and donated dress up clothes, blocks, toys, art supplies, etc. to get them started. 

This was Sunday night:

This is the entrance to the preschool as the firefighters were trying to put out the fire.

This is today as the teachers start to organize their new rooms (still without tables, chairs, shelves).

This is the teachers sorting the donated items and equally distributing them among themselves.

They have a much more positive outlook today.  They are doing the best they can with what they have.  Our teachers have pulled together to give, give, give.  Some teachers are giving time, some are giving materials, and all are giving support.  I LOVE the teachers I work with!

Thanks to everyone who has sent positive thoughts and prayers our way.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Sad and Lovely

Slice of Life #5 (five days in a row, yeah!!!)

Around 10:00 pm last night (central time zone) I received a call from our school letting everyone know that the preschool will not be open tomorrow because of the fire. In my head I am thinking, "Fire, what fire, what happened? Thank goodness no one was there."  I immediately texted a teacher who lives in town (I don't live in the city I teach in) to ask her for more information.  She tells me that the preschool is a complete loss.  The fire started in one of the teacher's room and spread to the rest of the preschool.  She sends me a picture of the entrance to the preschool and it barely looks recognizable.  The firefighters are still fighting the fire at this stage.  I texted the preschool director to let her know I am thinking about her and I am sorry.

This morning I walk into school and see my superintendent, the director of learning services, and my principal.  They are walking down the 4th and 5th grade hallway and each one walks in a different room.  You should have seen it.  They open all three doors at once and walk in.  I can only imagine what those teachers were thinking.  Not long after that I see some teachers helping the special education teacher at the other end of the building move to a different room.  Then I find out that the 4-5 teachers are moving to this end of the building today, like right then.  The preschool teachers are getting their rooms.  It is only 8:30 in the morning.  From then on, the day is a somewhat contained, organized chaos as the moving begins in earnest.  Five teachers, a speech teacher, our conference room, the book room (where we store our guided reading books), and our teacher work room were moved by the time the students leave the building at 3:05 pm.  It was amazing how the teachers and the community came together to make a hard situation work.

Today was hard on the preschool teachers because they lost everything.  Today was hard on the 4-5 teachers because they had to move classrooms in a few hours, set up the new classrooms, and watch students all at the same time.  Today was just hard.  But you know what, I was amazed at how our school and community came together to make it happen.  We had people from the community come to school to help move everything that needed to be moved.

It is going to be a difficult week for everyone.  The preschool students are coming back to school on Wednesday.  I don't know what they are going to do.  At this moment, the only thing they have are two large carpets in an otherwise empty room.  They don't have tables, chairs, center materials/manipulatives...anything.  There is one that we do have though.  We have each other.  We have a supportive staff and community.  We will come out the other side of this tragedy and be a stronger staff and a stronger community.  It is just going to take time.

On a happier note...

I was given the Lovely Blog Award by three wonderful blogs.  I am grateful for this award.  I am truly blessed that anyone reads my blog.  Thank you ladies!  You each made my night.

One Teachers Take...

I will award this lovely award to some of my fellow bloggers.  I am blessed to be part of such a great blogging community!  There are so many lovely blogs out there that it is going to be hard.  It just will not happen tonight.  It has been a long day.


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