Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Heart of a Teacher

One of the assistant principals shared this the first week of school.
I hope you enjoy it and I hope it makes you grateful for a teacher in your life.

Tell me one positive thing about your favorite teacher. Be thankful they were a part of your life (or still there).

Monday, August 22, 2011

Words of Inspriation

This message was sent to me by one of the young ladies who was in the youth group at my church. Her words were some meaningful and heartfelt. I thought I would share them with you.
"I just wanted to say that I look up to you a lot because of how you are one of those teachers who cares for her students and even though some may be a little like grr you still help them with everything that's in you and I can only hope that I could be just like you when I become a teacher. You have amazing enthusiasm even sometimes you have your off days. you make sure that everyone gets what your teaching them and that its not about how much you get paid or how many things you grade that they get wrong or right you help them in a way they get it because you use energy to do it. You help them out in every way you can and you relate to them even though they're like 10 or even a teenager and I look up to you for that 'cause that's how I want to teach and show the kids in my classroom one day how much I care for them as you do for yours you're awesome!"

I want to challenge you to share your thoughts and feelings about a teacher who you respect and admire. Either share your thoughts directly with them or share them here with us to see.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Found this in My facebook archives

I posted this on Facebook 2 years ago. I thought it was cleaver and worth sharing.
Clever student comment of the week: "Ms. Finnegan, do I start tomorrow with a new sheet of ice?" This question came after I told him we was skating on thin ice.
I told him that he would get a new sheet of ice and it would be thicker.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Heart Map

In writing every year, I have the students create a heart map. This is a pre-writing activity that we use to help generate ideas for writing pieces. This year was no exception. I have included my heart map in this post...take a look see.

The directions are to write the things that you love inside your heart and things you do not like outside your heart. I did tell them that they were not allowed to place people's names on the outside of their heart. After all, we need to be kind even if we do not like someone.

I discovered that many of my students dislike clowns and they love their families. Some even wrote that they love me, but I think my favorite was that one girl wrote bacon on the inside of her heart... After all, isn't everything better with bacon?

So here is my question for you... I want you to share one item that would be inside your heart and one that would be on the outside. I can not wait to read your comments!!!

HOOOOORay for Cupcakes

The first week of school brought so much joy and excitement into my life. I am elated to see what this year will bring me. My class last year was a challenge, but in the end I knew that each one of those children was placed in my class for a reason. This year however, I have a very different class and I can not wait to see what the year will hold. I believe this class was given to me as an answer to my summer prayers

One of my goals this year is to spend more time and effort doing things for my students. I want to plan lessons that will challenge my gifted students and also have the opportunities to help my struggling students. I want to provide opportunities for my students to love learning and being at school.

With that being said, I also want to do "little" things for my students. I sent them all postcards in the mail the first day of school. We celebrate birthdays with singing, gifts, and cards. For the first Friday, I made sweet treats for them. Our classroom theme is to be wise like an owl. I found this cute design for owl cupcakes and made them for the class. They were delicious, moist and fun. The best part was that the kids LOVED them and that made me happy.

It looks like I will be making macaroni and cheese for them in the coming weeks. I have several students who have told me that they have never had home made. I, of course, will fix this and make a pan for them to try at lunch. To me, it is really all about the "little" things.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

New Classroom

This year I was moved into a new room at the last minute. I was in my old room for 4 years and I had acquired a ton of junk while housed in one place. I ended up getting rid of a lot of stuff. I wished I had taken a picture of the mess that was my room before I put it together, but I do have pictures of what it looks like now. Let me know what you think.

My happy place in the back corner of the room.

The reading nook (note the huge container of pencils and dry erase markers).

The bulitin board and carpet area. This year we are Ms. Finnegan's Wise Owls.

View from my happy area.

View in from the door.

I hope this room holds a lot of love and learning this year.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Long Time, No See

Well the summer has officially come and gone. It was a much needed one for me.

The past year and a half has been very trying and challenging for me in my personal life. I also had an interesting school year last year. With this being said, I needed the break. Even though summer is supposed to be all rest and play for teachers, I worked in addition to resting and playing. I spent the summer coaching a summer league swim team. It was a great little job. It gave me something to do during my time off but also allowed me to enjoy my time off. I also spent a lot of time alone enjoy the peace and quiet. I have come to love my apartment and the quietness of being in it.

In addition to working and relaxing, I played... a lot. In June, I went to Las Vegas with my dad and had an amazing time. I had never been there and I loved every minute of it. The sites, food, and shows were fabulous. I cannot wait to go back. Las Vegas defiantly romanced its way into my heart.
The end of the summer came with two trips to the beach. These trips were much needed since I had acquired a tennis shoe and watch tan from coaching and heaven forbid I go back to school with it. I spent a few days in Florida with my family and then a week on Isle of Palms in Charleston, South Carolina with friends. Both trips were restful and full of sun and laughing.

Overall, my break was fabulous. I took a lot of much needed Ms. Finnegan time and I am ready to be back in the swing of things. As my principle stated, "Teaching is one of the only professions where you get a fresh start every year." Here's to a fresh start both professionally and personally.