Thursday, October 18, 2007

PTC and other stuff

Well, I don't want to set a precedent for only one blog a month so thought I'd better get blogging! Tomorrow is Parent Teacher Conferences - my first one as an elementary school teacher. I'm used to being on the other end of such conferences so am unsure exactly what I aim to do. I actually get to start the PTC today as one family wasn't able to make it tomorrow. As I only really need to see three families (I PTC with my DH on my own two kids daily LOL), that leaves only two for tomorrow. Guess today will be a trial run at this. Maybe I'll even shock myself and blog more on this subject after tomorrow!

I was working on report cards and trying to come up with a format that reflects what we do in class. You can imagine how hard that would be. Can play be a category to grade on? How about block building? Lego? Go Fish? Or the current popular and favorite game of the 2nd graders, Eye to Eye Jr. edition?

Eric and N. are thoroughly enjoying playing Eye to Eye daily. This game comes from Simply Fun, a game company I joined last year but decided not to renew this year after having a difficult time competing with the low cost games you can find at Ross here on Guam. In Eye to Eye you are given a question that you must find three answers to and then compare your answers to the other players. The idea is to "think alike" and match your 3 answers with your fellow players. If you are a unique thinker, this counts as points against you. The points are tracked using wooden cubes that are stacked in a five by five pyramid. The first player to complete his/her pyramid loses. Questions cover such topics as "Star Wars Characters", "Things you eat that are messy", and "Foods that are brown". The Junior version has more kid appropriate questions than the regular version. It requires quick thinking (you are timed if you want to be), creativity, using your imagination, and trying not to be too unique. Ideally you need 3 players to play or it will always end up in a tie game, unless Eric is keeping score. He has the ability to sneak in points against the other player if he/she is not looking! I suppose that would be called cheating, but he sees it as creative scoring.

After my PTC today I'll be rushing over to the Guam homeschooler's support group meeting where hopefully I'll be in time to share my Story Time Felt products with the few moms who stay to the end. I'm hoping to sell a few felt dolls and maybe a toggle book or two. With the dolls on sale this month, I'm hoping they will sell themselves. It would have been nice if the order I placed at the end of September had arrived and I could then share even more great items - like the calendar and felt bible collection I'm eagerly awaiting.

Anyway, pray that I'm able to come up with creative ways to tell the parents today that their sweet K5 child is bossy, an instigator of fights, and doesn't follow directions - oops I mean assertive, knows her own mind, and independent.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Professor Eric

Lately Eric has been drawing detailed pictures of the innards of dogs and cats. The large white board in the classroom has become one of the popular free play resources. I tried to fight it to save my dry erase markers, but have faced reality and realize you can't squelch creativity.

You can view my Picasa Web Album to see more pictures of what we do in the classroom. Just click on the link to the left.

I was amazed at the details Eric puts into his drawings. You can see the valves on the heart and the shape of the bones. He even includes the blood cells and what a broken bone looks like. He needs a few more lessons in anatomy as he has the dog's lungs located right under the jaw bone. But I love the "stuffy" nose on the poor dog! You can even see a pup in the dog's "stomach" (Think it's time to teach him where the baby really comes from?)

His cat picture is just as detailed and hilarious. It is pretty obvious that this boy is a cat lover!