gift guide: teachers

December 17, 2008 at 6:27 pm | Posted in teaching | Leave a comment

by sandra.

ever wanted to thank your child’s teacher but wasn’t sure what to purchase him/her?  below are some ideas that i have appreciated over the years.

*gift cards for a store or restuarant that almost everyone loves like starbucks, target, or burgerville (love those hazelnut milkshakes!).

*yummy homemade treats like cookies, caramel apples, or cocoa.

*a beautiful but easy to care for plant that s/he can keep at home or at school like a poinsettia or a fern.

*a card describing how much you appreciate him/her and why. (i save mine!)

*a book for the classroom.

*your time.  volunteer in the classroom to work one-on-one with students, copy, or take a project home.  these tasks are so helpful!

*a travel coffee mug. most teachers can’t survive without caffine!


goodbye friends.

April 2, 2007 at 12:35 pm | Posted in teaching, wedding plans | Leave a comment

posted by sandra.

many of you have been nice enough to ask how the wedding plans are going, so i wanted to update you before i put my blog and (most) of the wedding plans on hold for the next five to six weeks.

i’m pleased to report that we have chosen a date (august 18th), booked ceremony and reception sites, purchased my wedding dress (it’s beautiful!), and selected bridesmaid dresses, the menu, and a dj. this month i’m hoping to secure our officiant, finish the registries (macy’s and rei!) and website, and send out the save-the-dates. other than a few stressful moments here and there the planning is going smoothly overall. hooray!

as i mentioned above for the next five or six weeks i’ll be dedicating most of my time and energy to finishing school. i’ll be teaching full time starting next week (ancient greece and rome – ugh) and graduating may 5th (phew!) thus if you don’t here from me until then, don’t worry. just send me a note to say “happy easter,” “happy cinco de mayo,” or “happy graduation.”

look at me, mom! i’m (almost) a real teacher now.

January 6, 2007 at 6:00 am | Posted in teaching | Leave a comment

posted by sandra.

this week i began attending my practicum full time. that means i’ll be there every day until the end of january. it’s nice to not have classes or homework any longer, but i’ve still been busy with long hours at school, planning lessons, reviewing student work, and completing my worksample. in fact, i was so tired after school today that i spent my friday night taking a nap!

for those of you who don’t know what a worksample is, it’s a lengthy unit plan which must meet multiple pages of requirements prescribed by the oregon teacher standards and practices commission. all in all, i have over 55 pages in mine so far and continue to edit and add to it as i teach it throughout january. i spent most of last weekend working on mine, after which my dad remarked, “i hope they’re paying you well for all of the hard work you do.” very funny!

although lesson planning isn’t often a fun nor thrilling experience, it is interesting and rewarding. i’ve been learning more than i ever wanted to know about mammals and the students are excited to research a mammal of their choice. during science this past week i’ve heard, “ms. r, did you know that…?” repeatedly. as a teacher and lifelong learner, academic talk is music to my ears!

in addition to science i’ve also been teaching math and pe. the students have been talking about the new nintendo wii non-stop, so i connected our math lesson with their interest by showing them a misleading graph comparing the product to other game systems. it makes me smile to recall how up in arms they were when i pretended to use the graph to persuade them that playstation was the most popular. this weekend i’ll be figuring out how to teach 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders to play hockey. any experts out there?

overall, i’m feeling blessed to have this opportunity to fine tune my skills and try new teaching strategies with these amazing students. my teacher’s and supervisor’s feedback is helping me to improve and to provide welcomed assurance. it felt good to read my supervisor’s note which said, “as you progress through your career always remember and appreciate the gift you have in making that special connection with each student.”

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