Sunday “To-Dos”

Sunday mornings start our slow. There’s time to sip coffee and prepare breakfast together. I can sleep in a bit and awake after the sun begins its rise. It also signals the end of the weekend. Our “to do” list looms as the day moves on. Saturday things could be put off, there was still Sunday. So here I am on the last day of the weekend, the last day of March, sipping coffee as I watch the birds out the back window. Soon I’ll be moving on to that “to do” list hoping it will be a productive day. Writing everyday hasn’t always been easy, but I wrote all thirty-one days. I’ll miss our March Slice Challenge. Hopefully I’ll make Tuesday writing a habit.


April will Be Here Monday

I’ve nearly made it
To the end of March
To a goal of writing every day
To the last quarter of the school year
April will be here Monday

I have papers to grade
Comments to write
Grades to post
Plans to create
April will be here Monday

Teacher Workday

Today was a teacher workday as the quarter ended. Grades are due next Friday, so while I have everything ready, I haven’t inputted grades yet spending time copying, planning, talking and rearranging my room. We get 5,000 copies each quarter and I had many left. I shared a bit with some colleagues who had run out and then printed what I could for quarter 4. I reviewed the standards I’ll be focusing on in the upcoming term as I planned. It was nice to have time to talk to others, something that we don’t always have much time for during “normal” days. Rearranging my room just a bit and going through my classroom library, organizing and weeding was also time well spent. I was also able to put together some resources for a father hoping to help his daughter at home. It was nice to have this time just before our home stretch. I was thankful for this day and how it helped me recenter myself. Now we have three weeks before Spring break and another six afterward. This is when the year begins to go fast at times and drag at others. One more state test and our testing is behind us as well.

Making Time

I’m part of a year long literacy group in my district, and we met again from 4:30 – 7:30. With the quarter ending this week, time was precious and a late night made me wonder how I’d get everything else done. There were fewer participants, perhaps many had the same thoughts.

Once there, it was great to see the group I’ve been working with and talk. We did work on a reading unit for fourth quarter, we also talked about our days. Having a chance to connect with others in similar positions isn’t always easy.¬† We are in our rooms aside from a short lunch break and a few precious preps a week. This meeting made it possible to talk more. I think everyone found it worthwhile.

We need to remember to make time for these opportunities, even when we are busy with long lists to be completed.

Wondering as I Read

Even with a busy day, I try to find time to read before bed. Lately I’ve been reading Bitter Orange¬†by Claire Fuller, a book recommended by a friend. While reading last night I came across this:

It was just one paragraph, but to me one that made me stop and wonder. Working in a high poverty school we often have students taking what does not belong to them without any apparent remorse. Often they will look right at you and claim it belongs to them, that they brought it from home, even when you’ve seen them take it.

Is it the parents or society?

It made me pause and wonder.

Mondays are Challenging

Mondays are always a challenging day,
as students return from the weekend.
They have structure and expectations here,
many have very few at home.

Monday started with a student squirting juice,
three boxes all over the floor as she ran.
She made sounds as she ran and enjoyed the attention,
there was no thought of why it might be wrong.

As we met in the “living room” another refused move,
she was in the spot another student was supposed to sit in.
She glared and told me “I don’t have to listen to you”
before finally leaving when I had called the councilor.

There were many other bumps in Monday’s “road,”
Name calling, kicking, throwing papers, running in the halls.
The day ended with a boy pushing me and running out,
throwing a basket and hitting another student.

This is not how school should be even in an urban title I school,
our students deserve more than this their future depends on it.
So much learning is lost because of out-of-control behaviors,
These students are stealing other’s education, it needs to stop.


Spring Sounds

Before the sun began to rise I heard the coyotes,
barking and howling in a nearby field.
They’ve been more vocal lately
at the temperatures warm.
My alarm signaled that start of the day,
I heard song birds singing as the morning sun appeared.
Not to be outdone,
a duck began to quack out a greeting as well.
The sounds of spring are all around.