Saturday, June 30, 2012

I Think I Might Be ADHD...

I know there has been quite a bit going on in my life lately, but I am thinking more and more each day that I might have ADHD.  A lady of my age probably should have figured this out by now... Do any of you feel this way?  I used to be pretty organized and I long so badly to be that way again, but...

Exhibit A:  I have the materials for several Pinterest projects around the house and a few projects even started, but seem to not be able to sit down and focus on one at a time.  I WANT TO DO THEM ALL!!!

Exhibit B:  I clean, decorate, and organize like some kind of crazy person - at home and at school!  I start working in one area. I see something that doesn't belong in the area where I am working.  I pick it up and take it to its proper "home".  Before I know it, I am working in THAT new area - oh my...I eventually get back to where I began...sometimes...

Exhibit C:  I am reading at least 4 books, no 5, no 6, oh, I'm not sure but more than 1 book.  I have books EVERYWHERE (Some, I am certain, would call it an obsession.)  Here are a few of the books I am reading now.  Would any of you like to tell me which to sit down and finish? Please? ;)

Professional Reading:

Finishing The Daily 5 from last summer...
and  Teach Like a Champion
The Daily FiveTeach Like a Champion: 49 Techniques that Put Students on the Path to College

A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles of "A Course in Miracles" 
In my bathroom right now:  

        A Return to Love

On my Kindle, being read, but not finished:

The Energy Bus: 10 Rules to Fuel Your Life, Work, and Team with Positive EnergyWild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail (Oprah's Book Club 2.0)
Wild and
 The Energy Bus 

Believe me, there are others, but I think you get the idea...  I think I would understand more if they were not good books, but they are all AWESOME, AND I HAVE RECENTLY BOUGHT MORE!!!  I'm overwhelmed and am not the world's fastest reader, cleaner, decorator, etc.  Any advice or help is appreciated, as well as any "ME TOOs" out there so I don't feel quite so crazy - lol
Anyway, I'm going to get back to Wild, which I was reading before I got sidetracked by the computer.  ADHD?? I don't know.  What do you think?
 =) Beth 

Monday, June 18, 2012

Duck Tape Mania

So.. I've caught the "Duck Tape bug" - I know I'm a little behind :)
You start with a trip to your favorite superstore to purchase just a "few" rolls of  duck tape.  A few of these rolls are for the Duck Tape pens my niece and I are going to make when she visits. (Yea for Pinterest projects!)

See..just a few - lol  Even Texas A&M  Duck Tape!!!

I found this cute "EZ start" type and decided to try it too.
1st project - time for a Clipboard Make-over

Before:  Boring and Marked-up
After:  FUN!! =)
Next, add a matching fluency phone (My sweet husband is making me a class set for my new 2nd grade classroom.)
How fun is this??!! =D

Thanks to Pinterest inspiration from: Classroom DIY 

So, grab some duck tape, get inspired, and have a FUN-FILLED Week!!

Thanks to Tara at  4th Grade Frolics who encouraged me to link up with her Monday Made It Linky. Check out all of the awesome ideas shared there!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Where to Begin?

I literally don't know where to begin this post.  I have put off writing it for so long, because I just do not know where to begin.  However, I told myself I will NOT give up on this blog!!!  So here goes...

As my previous post explained, 2011 was quite a year!  Well, 2012 began with all of the best of intentions and most positive thoughts, but life continued the barrage of challenges: 

The new Texas STAAR Writing test was quite a challenge for all Texas 4th grade teachers.  Being departmentalized and teaching 65(ish) students, added to my challenge.  We did the best we could and while I think the "test" results were ok, the writing growth for our students was AMAZING.  I hold true that it is ridiculous to judge a child's writing based on a standardized test.  One of my students was taking the test the week after his father passed away... Was he really supposed to perform a the top of his ability?  Just one example and enough said on that topic...  Good news is my students loved writing FAR more and had far more "tools in their writing tool kit" by the end of the year than they did at the first of the year and I am very proud of them! =)

On a very sad note, the last 2 weeks of school, my father, who lived in a nursing home because he was diagnosed with Alzheimer's, took a fall and broke his leg.  This caused all sorts of other problems in a chain reaction that sadly and unexpectedly ended his life.  Thanks to an INCREDIBLE teaching team and school faculty and staff, I was allowed to be with him the entire time he was in the hospital, and afterward was able to help with funeral arrangements and be there to support and be supported by my family.  I sincerely did not worry about school during that time, because I am so blessed with teachers who are friends.  Some even drove 6 hours to attend his funeral!  I will never be able to adequately express my gratitude for all they did for me and my family during one of the most difficult times of my life.  I miss my Daddy.  Though I did not live right near him, we were very close.  He taught me so much, and above all else loved me unconditionally.  I am so proud to know he is with Jesus now, but I will never not miss him.  He is one of the biggest sources of inspiration in my life.  I am certain I will write another post soon in his honor.

Lastly, after 7 years of teaching 4th grade, with 3 teaching Writing exclusively, I knew it was time for a change.  I am excited to say I will be teaching 2nd grade next year in my school!  This is going to bring it's own challenges and OMG, I HAVE TO CHANGE ROOMS, but I am thrilled for the opportunity!  There are many, many things I will miss about 4th grade and I can see returning there, but it will be so much fun to see younger readers and writers.  I am going to learn SO MUCH!  It will also be fun to teach Math & Science again :)  My hope is to inspire the teachers of younger grades to take writing as seriously as the other subjects and to inspire them to ENJOY teaching writing!

So...I'm not sure what direction this blog will go, but for now I will keep the name "Inspired Writing Teacher," as that is still my passion.  I welcome any tips, comments, advice, and prayers! 

Have a Marvelous Monday!!!

Loyd Smith (Daddy) atop "Rodeo" - one of his favorite horses.
Loyd Smith -- WWII veteran U.S. Army