Monday, November 30, 2009

On a break!

I'm on a break from school so that I can spend the week finishing up my Master's work. That is one of the perks of being a substitute teacher! Wahoo! Love it! :)

I applied for three more jobs, but didn't get them. So I guess I'll just have to try to get highly qualified for at least reading this spring and maybe for Math and Language Arts as well. What a pain, but seems to be necessary. Thoughts?

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Staying busy subbing

I am staying busy subbing. I've been to a little over half of all of the elementary schools in our district, as well as all but one of our middle school and one high school.

Yesterday I subbed in a self contained special education room and it made me miss working with those kids. I love how the teacher had the classroom and paraprofessionals all set up. I'm going to have to remember it so I can do something similar when I get a job again. I've applied for a couple of temp special ed jobs, but haven't heard anything yet.

Monday, October 19, 2009

High school isn't so bad!

My day at the big school wasn't so bad! :) The kids weren't snotty, and the day was easy. It was choice day, so the kids could choose between basketball, volleyball, walking or the weight room. I supervised the kids playing basketball. I walked around the gym while I watched them, so that was good exercise. It was a good day. :)

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Adventures in Subbing!

Let me just say that I'm not fond of subbing in middle school. There are some kids who just want to make my life as a sub miserable! GRRRRR!!!! There are some very sweet kids in middle school, but the few that make life miserable make me not want to sub in middle school. Lately that seems to be the calls I've been getting though. I'd rather sub in Elementary. Ultimately, I'd rather have my own job, but that isn't going to happen until next year, hopefully.

Monday I have a job subbing in high school! YIKES! It is for a PE/Health teacher. We'll see how it goes. I'm a little scared, and there is locker rooms involved. YIKES! I'll let you know how it turns out.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Music, PE, and a Math teacher

I've been a busy little Jack-of-all-trades. :) Last week I was at an elementary school as a PE and music teacher. Today I was a math teacher in Middle school. The best thing about today was that I got to teach the same lesson all day! :) That makes it a little easier. This is kind of fun. I don't have to deal with any politics. Which I needed a break from.

Speaking of politics, I guess I'm going to take the language arts math competency assessments. That way I'll be covered, unless some day I need to teach science or social studies. I'll cross that bridge when I get to it. But I want to be highly qualified by next year. I don't want to spend another year subbing. I want my own classroom.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Subbed in a kindergarten class today

I love kindergarten. Well, I love preschool even more. The kids are so squirlly this time of year. You can tell the kids who went to preschool and those who didn't. The kids who went to preschool can sit, and those who didn't usually can't sit still for any period of time.

I did have fun reading stories to them and singing with them. It was fun, and only for half the day! I love subbing for 1/2 the day. Helped me get out of the house, but I didn't have to work all day. :)

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

A chance for many stories

I have a chance to post many new stories on here, because this year I am going to sub. :) All the fun of teaching with little politics and planning. :) It will be an adventure. I might also be able to help with testing, which I love to do. So all is not lost. I will miss having my own classroom, but this is how it is this year. And if I find a Bible study that I want to do, I can always have that day off. :)

Sunday, September 6, 2009

No subbing either?

At least I haven't gotten a call from the sub office that I'm going to be subbing. God must really, really want me to be a stay at home mom this year. Good thing Joe took care of things so I can do that. I never dreamed that I would be a unemployed Special Ed Teacher. Interesting, to say the least.

Monday, August 31, 2009

No job yet

No job yet for me. I'd better get the paperwork filled out for subbing. As of right now I'm waging a full time war against ants in my house. They moved in when we moved in last week. GGGRRRR!!!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Finished My Master's Thesis!

Wahoo! It sure feels good to have it done. I wanted to see if there was a link between students who struggle with reading and students who have speech difficulties. The literature supported this, but my limited research did not. I think if I would have done my research in my last school district, I would have gotten better results because they keep special services data in the cum file, whereas my school district I just left didn't. So I didn't know who had been in speech but had been exited. That would have been nice to know.

Anyhow, I'm so glad to have that off of my shoulders. I feel so much better. Now I am on to pack and get the girls ready for a new school year. I might just have to tutor this coming school year, as I haven't found a job yet. Oregon is taking forever issuing me a teaching certificate, so I think that is why I haven't been offered a job yet. I guess I could always get a job after the school year starts and they know what numbers will be in each school. It is kind of hard to tell how many special education students you will have when the numbers change over the summer.

UPDATE: I just got an e-mail from the OR DOE that my certificate is on the way. That is a huge load off my shoulders! I really wanted to get that before all of the jobs are gone. :)

Monday, August 3, 2009

Still waiting, but...

...I haven't lost hope. I am hoping to hear back soon. Thanks for your prayers. School doesn't start until Sept 8th, so I still have some time. :)

No other school things to write about. My husband is home from Holland. For those of you who don't know, he was there since September. It was a long haul, but we made it. It is soooooooooooooooo good to have him home. :)

Friday, July 24, 2009

Got a call

I got a call from a principal that has 44 applicants for one job! OI! That is a lot of applicants. Not encouraging. He is going to call everyone who had good resumes, then he'll call us back if he wants to interview us further. I am sure that God has just the right job waiting for me with the right district and the right principal, and right special education team. :) And also, just the right students. :)

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Applied for some new jobs

I applied for some new jobs last night. The school district I really want to work for has openings for Intervention specialist, and resource rooms. I hope that I get one of these jobs. It would be nice to have a job before we go look at apartments in August.

Friday, July 10, 2009

No luck yet

I think that my not having my Oregon license is preventing me from getting a job yet. Or the principals are on vacation still. Who knows. I hope to get a call any day. I should have my license soon. And hopefully the principals will be back from vacation soon. It would be nice to get a job while still here in Boise. I had my job in Phoenix without a face to face interview. Please pray that I get just the right job. :)

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Applying for job!

I have been applying for jobs. I was getting a little frustrated because the jobs where we were going to live weren't getting posted. I was applying far away. But today when I checked one of the two districts we'll be living by, there were three jobs there! Wahoo! So I applied to all three of them. I hope, I hope, I hope! That would be a load off, that is for sure.

In other news, my girls are going to VBS and I'm not volunteering for the first time. The truth is, I have too much homework and am having trouble keeping up with my house work and yard work. So I can't volunteer for too much this summer. My class has us reading a ton of pages a week. And every time I sit down to read, zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. :)

Monday, June 8, 2009

The Job Hunt

I'm starting to get a little worried about finding a job in Portland. There haven't been any jobs posted yet in the town my husband is going to be working in, or the next town that we hope to live in. I sure hope I don't have to drive far for work. Times are tough, but there should be jobs for a Special Education teacher, surely.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Do I know you?

Wow! I have come to the realization that I don't know my last school at all! I was only there a year, and only worked 1/2 time at that. But goodness... In a class I'm taking right now, I'm having to make suggestions and relate some details about my school. I drew a blank for most of it. I don't know if the other teachers work as a grade level team. I don't know if there is any collaboration in that school at all? I suspect not much since the principal is going to a collaboration class this summer, and taking some teachers with her.

It makes me sad that I worked there a year and didn't know hardly anything about that school. I hope that I am at my next school longer so I can get to know the inner workings of the school better. And hopefully contribute something to that school.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

The search is on

I have been regularly checking the schools in the Portland area for job openings. In Beaverton some jobs just opened. They are district jobs, and that is a step in the right direction. They should have jobs at schools posted shortly. As soon as I get home, I'll finish filling out my applications. It takes a little bit because of the essays. I'm grateful for a little more schooling to help me answer these questions.

I know that special education jobs are harder to fill than others, and easily vacated. I pray that I can find a good job next fall. Oh the woes of being the new teacher on staff again. I hope we stay here for a while so I don't have to be the new teacher for long.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Hit the road Jack!

My classroom is all packed, and in the van. I am packing my stuff at my mom's house. Then Monday June 1st, we are so out of here! :) We will be going back to Idaho to wait for Joe to be done in Holland. Then we will be moving to Portland, Oregon in August. Whew! What a crazy year this is going to be. I'm curious as to where I'm going to working, where we are going to be living, etc. Crazy, crazy year! I'm excited to get home though. It has been a rough year. I can take anything that life brings me, through Christ who strengthens me!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Only a few days left!

Today I papered some shelves, to keep the dust out. And I am working on my research paper. I have to look up my sample kids and see if any of them have had speech. My paper is on how speech development affects kids ability to learn how to read.

So how are my fellow teachers doing with the end of school? I'm so excited!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

2 Weeks left!

My progress reports are done, my IEPs are updated. The kids are very ready to be done with school. I'm ready to be done with school and go home to Boise to see my house. I miss my house, and my things. And we need to get our things ready to move to Portland. What a busy summer we're going to have. :)

Sunday, May 3, 2009

3 weeks left!

Only three weeks left of school. Wahoo! I'm so excited to get back to Idaho and my house! I miss my house.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Playing Hooky!

I'm playing hooky today! hehe! I have a ton of homework still for my class, so I'm staying home to finish it. When I'm done, I'll be done with this class. Wahoo!

As much as I love learning, I never imagined how much work getting my Master's would be. And I never thought I'd be getting it without the help of Joe, my husband. He'll get back in the country in time for me to be done with my regular classes. I tell you, when I graduate, I'm going to throw a big party! :)

Sunday, April 26, 2009

What to do?

Progress reports are due, this week I think. I'd better check on that. So what do I do with the kids after that? For my reading and writing group, I'm just going to keep on going with their lessons. They are learning so much and I'd hate to lose that momentum. My other student who is DD, I guess we will just hang out and have fun. He isn't really on the cusp of learning anything or developing anything.

It sure seems a waste to have this much time left after progress reports. My reading group could make some more progress by the end of the year, which is four weeks from now. We'll only have five weeks on this progress report. Paper work, paper work. OI!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Too early to pack up, but...

But I really want to! hehe! I'm getting excited about moving back home for a month and then on to our new destination, Hillsboro, Oregon! Hillsboro hasn't posted jobs for next year yet. They've only just started posting for the summer. So I'll be waiting to hear about jobs for next fall. I really, really want to work close to where we live. I get cranky when I have to deal with traffic.

My students are doing so well. I'm so proud of them! They have all grown in their reading and writing abilities. We have writing prompts that they work on three times a year, and it is that time of year again. They have written easily twice as much as they did last time, if not more. Wow! I'm so proud. sniff, sniff. It is times like these that I love being a teacher. :)

Sunday, April 19, 2009

4 weeks of school left!

This is going to be a long, eventful summer. We are moving to Portland, OR. The school district that we are moving into doesn't start until after Labor day. That is going to be so weird! I've always been in school a few weeks if not a month before Labor day.

We are headed back to Boise in a month, then we will start getting our things ready for Hillsboro, the suburb that we're moving to. I am going to take all of my teacher things with me this time. I wasn't able to bring it all down here with me, because we didn't have that much room. I had to fit all of my teacher materials into my Beetle Bug, and that isn't that big of car. :)

Background: I live in Meridian, Idaho. My husband is in Holland for a year learning a new machine that his company is making. That way when it is over here, he can service it. So since I'm getting my Master's and have two young girls, we moved down here to Phoenix to live with my parents while my husband is away. My 2nd grader requires a lot of help with her reading too, so I really needed the extra help. As soon as school is over, we're headed home to Boise, Idaho. Then we'll pack up a bit, not everything, and get ready for our move to Portland, or Hillsboro to be more specific. We can't sell our house because it is worth so much less than when we bought it. So we'll be living in an apartment for a while. That is my life in a nutshell right now. Oh, I'm getting my Master's in Reading. :)

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Toys in the classroom

I teach 2nd graders for a reading and writing group. There is one boy that keeps bringing toys to class. If he kept them in his pocket, that would be one thing. But he keeps playing with them. I've taken them away and given them back at lunch when he goes back to his gen ed class. Well, today he brought more toys! So being the mean teacher I am, I took them away again. Then when class was over I walked with him back to class and gave the toys to his teacher. I hope he has learned his lesson and won't bring toys to school anymore.

What would you do?

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

32 days and counting

32 days until this school year comes to an end. It was hard for us to have such a short summer last year. We got out in June and then started at the beginning of August. This coming summer we will have the longest summer yet! We get out 5/21 and won't start summer again until after Labor Day. What a relief that will be. Especially since this summer we are moving. We'll need as much time to get ready for moving as we can get. Plus this will be the last summer of my Master's program, so it will be nice to have some extra time to work on that.

It is bitter sweet to have this year come to and end. On the one hand, leaving a team that doesn't work together will be so very nice! On the other hand, I will miss my roommate, and our students. I told my students the other day that I wasn't coming back and they all got sad. That is nice to know I'll be missed. It is so hard on students in special ed sometimes because there is such high turnover in that department. I hope that they will have some consistency in the future. I will also miss my paras. I've had some awesome paras this year. I wish I could take them with me.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Next week we're back to normal!

Testing is done for my 2nd graders. Wahoo! The 4th graders have one more test to take, science. My daughter is one of them.

I misses my little reading group of five kids. I had the "over" to play Pictureka today. They weren't scheduled to come to my room, but I thought they deserved a reward from their tests. :)

All my paperwork is done, not the meetings. But that is okay. We'll "get 'er done." :)

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Almost done!

My 2nd graders are actually done with testing. The 4th graders are the only ones who have testing left because they have to do the science portion of the test. I'm going to bring a movie in for my special ed students to watch on Friday. This has been a tough week.

Today while I had no students, I planned for the rest of the school year! Yahoo! Don't tell my principal, she might send me home for the rest of the year and get a sub. hehe! NOT! There isn't money for a sub. :)

I'm glad that testing is almost done. Whew!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Make it go away!

We are only on tuesday of testing week H@((! I will be so glad when this week is done. My students are in a class with another teacher trying to take a test that is way over their head. I know it is hard, and that I can't do anything for them. 2 more days! 2 more days!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Testing, testing everywhere...

And no accurate results to read. All testing does for my special ed students is tell me that they aren't on grade level, which I already know. Because they are already in special ed. Duh! I wish they would let us give them ability appropriate assessments instead of grade appropriate testing. It would tell me a lot more.

NCLB mean no child left untested!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

My Last IEP of the year!

Wahoo! My last IEP of the year is this week. I'm done with my part of the IEP. Wahoo!!!!!!!! I wait, I said that already. :)

Now I can concentrate on teaching my students. What a treat that is. :) And I'm excited to continue using Lindamood Bell aspects with my students. They seem to be loving what I've started working on so far.

Next on my list: Find a job for next year. I hope they are hiring in Portland!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Do you ever feel buried?

Do you ever feel buried in paper work? OI! I'm working on an IEP this weekend. Luckily it is for an LD kid, so it is much easier to write than an IEP for my CI kiddos. There is so much paper work! And why? Lawyers and advocates. I'm so glad that parents have advocates to help them get outside services. I think that is a great asset. However, I'm not so sure about them in schools. That is another post though.

Anyway, I just wanted to vent. Thanks for reading. (listening) :)

Thursday, March 26, 2009

I love student lead conferences

We are having student lead conferences right now. One good thing about them, is that I don't have to be at them, unless the parents ask for me. Then I'll set up a meeting with them later. I only had one parent ask for a meeting, and we had it during school today. Wahoo! :)

I also went to my daughters' student lead conferences. They did great. And they love telling me how they did in class. :)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Playing Hooky!

I'm playing hooky from work today and tomorrow! My husband is here from Holland until Thursday. So I'm took today off and tomorrow off as well. :) I still had an IEP meeting this morning and one tomorrow morning, but then I have the rest of the day off. :) Thursday I'm going to be one sad teacher.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Sunday Grattitudes

I haven't done grattitudes for a while. It isn't that I haven't had things to get grateful for, I just have been so busy that I haven't posted. I'm on spring break for work and school, so I have a little bit of time to post.

1. Spring Break! I'm thankful that my school is flexible on when we can do spring break to coincide with our work school schedule. I was able to do spring break for work and school this last week. It was nice to be able to relax with my husband for a week. :)

2. My husband, Joe, is here! Wahoo! I miss him so much. I am going to be very sad on Friday after he leaves.

3. My girls have enjoyed spring break as well.

4. I'm grateful for the seminar I went to this week. Lindamood Bell is a great program. I can't wait to start working on it with Faith this coming week. Then in Portland I may open a clinic for teaching this program.

5. My new meds are working. So far, so good.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Nothing like a convention to get you hyped!

I am reminded of a Amway convention when you go and learn new things and get pumped to go sell the product. I went to a Lindamood Bell conference this week and am now pumped to go back to school and try teaching kids to read using what I learned at my conference. I also ordered the kit for Seeing Stars. I can hardly wait to start using that with Faith, and my class at school. :)

Sunday, March 15, 2009

NCLB not good for Middle Schools and High schools

I was browsing the some websites that state the NCLB results from last year. Elementary schools are having a pretty good time of making their goals. This is the age where children can improve on what they know with great strides. I was disturbed at first to see my home states ratings for middle schools and high schools. They are not making it. Not just a few, but pretty much all of them! When I set rules are objectives for my students, and none of them pass them, or can live up to them, I reevaluate my standards. I truly hope that the bureaucrats in DC look at what they expect MS and HS teachers to learn. The pressure that these unrealistic goals are putting on school districts is not good and does not make for a positive learning community.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Unending, unconditional love

People often ask me how I can work with the very special ed. I have one answer, unending, unconditional love. I love working with kids who don't talk back, aren't purposely naughty, and who love every adult who works with them. What's not to love about that?

A friend of mine, whose daughter was in my class last year, posted an article about a new blood test pregnant women can take to detect chromosomal defects prenatally. These "professionals" who came up with this test think that our world is better without children with special needs. Yes they have a hard life, and they require more care than others, but they are not unworthy of life! These very special people are not useless to society, they are not a burden on society. These people love unconditionally, they know no evil, and if they do, they forget about it instantly.

So when asked how I can teach the beautiful children that I teach, I say that I wouldn't have it any other way!