Saturday, June 23, 2012

I Made It! Summer is Here!

     Last Friday was my last official day at school.  Yeah!  I finally made it!  We had two days with the kids that week.  They were busy days!  Tuesday was field day.  Half of the school had field day in the morning.  The other half had it in the afternoon.  Unfortunately, we had some rain, so the kids participated in field day under the covered area and in the gym.  They still had fun, though.  They sure enjoyed the bouncy houses!  In the afternoon, we had an End of the Year/ Summer Birthday Party in our classroom.  It was a fun way to end the day and year.  We had ice cream sundaes, cookies, cupcakes, and drinks.  There were 3 parents who volunteered to help.  I really appreciated them dishing up the ice cream while I slowly called kids to go get their ice cream.

     In the last week, the students were learning about Tomie de Paola's Strega Nona stories. The kids had never heard them before.  They really enjoyed it!  We have been doing an author study using Tomie's books about himself as we studied realistic fiction.  It was fun to add some of his fiction books.  I noticed the kids were reading all of the books during Read to Self.  We made a chart that we used as a story map to chart out the characters, setting, problem, and solution.  I saw something like this when I did a search online.  I don't remember what blog it was from because I had ever read this blog before and didn't write it down.

The kids enjoyed repeating the words Strega Nona said when using her magic pasta pot:  

Bubble, bubble pasta pot, Boil me some pasta nice and hot, 
I'm hungry and it's time to sup, Boil enough pasta to fill me up.  

We watched a video that I have of Tomie dePaola speaking to an audience of kids and their parents.  He demonstrated how to draw Strega Nona.  I watched the video over and over at home and drew her in steps so that I could teach the kids.  We ran out of time to draw her, but the kids liked my picture. I did this last year with my third graders. Next year, I will teach this earlier so that we have time.   

 My drawing following Tomie's instructions.

Drawing and writing about Strega Nona by a
third grade student from a year ago.

I also created a binder about Tomie de Paola and his books for the students.  The kids enjoyed reading this during Read to Self.  I'm considering adding more to the binder and writing up an entire unit.  I took a class about 12 years ago on our state inservice day about Tomie de Paola.  It was taught by an Oregon teacher who met Tomie and had permission to write a book about him.  I have enjoyed teaching about his books since then.

It has been fun to see how the kids have started to read Tomie's books.  I'm sure they will continue to look for them next year.

     The teachers worked 3 days after the kids got out.  Because we had 2 snow days and a flood day (very unusual to have a flood day), the superintendent decided that the teachers would need to make it up at the end of the year.  On Thursday we had to work 12 hours.  That was so difficult at the end of the year!  We spent 4 hours in professional development and the rest was used to do as we needed.  Four hours were for finishing grades.  I worked on the grades on Thursday and Friday and barely got them done in time.  There has been a lot of paper work that needed to be turned in to my principal that I also was working on.  I didn't get to work on my room until the weekend.

     I'm still at work busy cleaning and organizing my room.  Why do I let it get so messy?  I have things scattered around the room, but I promised the principal and custodian that I would finish on Monday.  I do want to get out of there and onto my vacation.  I've been going to school around noon and staying until 8:00 p.m.  I am exhausted.  I was going to go today, but I think I need a little break.  Maybe I'll just go for two hours since I am meeting a couple of friends this evening for dinner.  I've known one since 3rd grade and the other since 8th grade.  We haven't seen each other in a long time.  It should be fun!

     I'll work hard to posting more often this summer.  I'm hoping I can learn how to put on here things that I create to share with everyone.  That's something I still need to learn how to do.  I have created some great things this year now that I discovered and know how to use clip art that I'd love to share.  

     Enjoy your weekend!


Delighted said...

My summer break is half over. Time goes by so quickly so enjoy every moment! I don't even want to think about school right now. I'm switching rooms & I created quite a mess in my room. lol

Diane said...

I can't imagine being half over with summer break and it's only the end of June! It does go quickly. I do plan to enjoy it. Glad to know that I'm not the only one who has a mess in their room at the end of the year.

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