Thursday, April 26, 2007

Thank you's are becoming a dying art. Just a little note to let someone know that you are appreciated, have made some type of positive impact, some action was appreciated -- with so many in the digital age, those who still take pen to paper are now in the minority. For me, I send notes all the time. The discounted paper suppliers are my friends and I usually keep a set of notes in my purse so that if I am at dinner or just sitting in a meeting, I can jot down a note, and send it off to the person I am thinking about.

With time being so short, you just never know when you might not be able to say all that wish to those you care for and have in your heart.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Week #27 - Word Understanding Record (do both definitions)

7th Grade = credulous (gullible; ready to believe without proof)
The credulous young child still believed in fairies and witches, while having no proof of such an existence.

8th Grade= elucidate (to explain; to make clear)
Teachers must carefully elucidate the lessons if their students are going to understand the content.

Think of a time that you have cared for someone or something.
  • What did you do to take care of it/them?
  • What did you learn from the situation?
  • Explain.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Time.... is on my side....

I am having a GREAT TIME. We are working on some newer material and amazingly enough, it seems to be holding up pretty well. Today is a catch-up day (think tomatoes) for the students since there have been, well some folks not doing homework on a regular schedule, hence, some of our discussions have been lacking a bit of participation.

Things that seem to work best:
  • energy from the teacher (shocker)
  • having LOTS of little things planned to break up the day
  • many different TYPES of things to do rather than just sitting in one spot forever
  • giving lots of time for REFLECTION on the work
I am also enjoying being able to plan things --- it is something that I have found that suites me. If it involves a system for getting something done, I will be able to figure out a plan that most likely will work.

I am also being inspired by the students' enthusiasm for the work, the material, and how willing they are to work and to try. I have also been getting back into the habit of reading again and that is providing additional inspiration. I hope to inspire some students to come to the realization so eloquently stated below.

" What she showed me today is that a truly self-reliant person takes action, leaving nothing to chance and everything to themselves. She showed me that excuses will not bring about success and that adversity is not something you walk with, but something you leap over. The only obstacles ar the ones you allow. A chain is only as strong as its weakest link. A truly self-reliant person finds his weak leak and strengthens it. I want to be a self-reliant person, now and forever."
>>>from CONVERGE MAGAZINE, Winter 2007 edition, pg. 12 in M. Leights column. Quote is from one of Erin Gruwell's students.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

READ the following poem by Sandra Cisneros - MY NAME.
Write a memoir about your family and discuss the influences your grandparents, parents, and siblings have on you using concrete details. Why have these individuals and their influences been important to you?


In English my name means hope. In Spanish it means too many letters. It means sadness; it means waiting. It is like the number nine. A muddy color. It is the Mexican records my father plays on Sunday mornings when he is shaving; songs like sobbing.
It was my great-grandmother’s name and now it is mine. She was a horse woman, too, born like me in the Chinese year of the horse—which is supposed to be bad luck if you’re born female—but I think this is a Chinese lie because like the Chinese, like the Mexicans, don’t like their women strong.
My great-grandmother. I would’ve liked to have known her—a wild horse of a woman, so wild she wouldn’t marry until my great-grandfather threw a sack over her head and carried her off. Just like that, as if she were a fancy chandelier. That’s the way he did it.
And the story goes she never forgave him. She looked out the window her whole life, the way so many women sit their sadness on an elbow. I wonder if she made the best with what she got or was she sorry because she couldn’t be all the things she wanted to be. Esperanza. I have inherited her name, but I don’t want to inherit her place by the window.
At school they say my name is funny as if the syllables were made out of tin and hurt the roof of your mouth. But in Spanish my name is made out of a softer something like silver, not quite as thick as sister’s name—Magdelena—which is uglier than mine. Magdelena who at least can come home and become Nenny. But I am always Esperanza.
I would like to baptize myself under a new name, a name more like the real me, the one nobody sees. Esperanza as Lisandra or Maritza or Zeze the X. Yes. Something like Zeze the X wil do. From Sandra Cisneros poem, MY NAME.