I'm trying to write sub plans and create lessons and send them to my team because I said I would and my fingers keep typing and my brain keeps working but my eyes keep closing and I keep falling asleep and then jerking myself awake and rereading what I just typed and I'm scared that I'm going to send something really weird in an email to a colleague and never know it but I can't just go to bed because I have a sub tomorrow and I don't have stuff ready for her and grades are due on Thursday but I have PILES of late work to grade still and my kids keep asking when I'm going to grade it and if I don't get this all done tonight I'll just be up all night again tomorrow but all I really want is to go to bed and sleep for a few days but I have to be at work in just a few hours and doesn't this couch look comfortable?
For some reason my blog isn't working, so I'm writing this as a note in my phone and I guess I can transfer it later (update: it's transferred haha). Funny that my blog stopped working tonight when I just wanted to do something "quick" and get to bed.
Adulting is hard work. I feel like there is always something to occupy my time, thoughts, and energy. What was life evern like before my endless to-do lists, late nights, or things hanging over my head? I'm not even sure I remember such a time (I've always been a compulsive list make - it shows through in my writing). Is there a way to get back there, though? Back to taking time to read a book without feeling guilty. Back to when saying yes to a social invitation didn't mean saying no to grading and/or sleeping. Back to not knowing about bills, or moving, or to-do lists.
And something, will I look back on this year and say, "How do I get back there?"
Right now I am watching "The Courageous Heart of Irena Sendler" - previewing it before showing it to my 8th-grade students. I am saddened by the terrible treatment of the Jews by the Germans, but amazed at the courage it took for parents to send their children to live with Polish families to be safer, and for others to risk their lives to save children and others. It was a terrible time in our world's history, but I am grateful to hear stories of the goodness that existed then, too.
Does late-night shopping turn anyone else into a crazy person? Tonight I went to the store for 5 things, but then I saw mini corn dogs. Luckily I had the strength to walk away from these, but unfortunately not from the chips, the ice cream, or the chocolate eggs. I did walk past the produce and the healthier snacks pretty easily, though. 😉 I don't know what it is, but going to the store late at night always weakens my resolve to eat healthier.
I've been at the UCET (Utah Coalition for Educational Technology) conference yesterday and today to learn about how to use technology to improve student learning. I have learned so much, and I feel like my eyes have been opened to so many new possibilities! Here are the things I'm most excited to try when I get back to school:
I love conferences. I always leave feeling so energized and excited to get back to teaching!
Have you read Jennifer Gonzalez's post Find Your Marigold? If you haven't, stop reading this and go read that first.
I want to be more of a marigold. It's so easy to get bogged down in all the hard things that happen in education: the new schedule, the pressure to help every kid pass that ever-looming end-of-level test, the students who ask to turn in late work after you've said (multiple times) that yesterday was the last day to do so. Sometimes it's just easier to focus on the negative instead of using the mental energy it takes to think of the good things that are sometimes hidden.
But honestly, being a walnut tree (or being around walnut trees) saps my energy! All that negative energy makes me more tired, more overwhelmed, more stressed. Amazingly, though, having a positive attitude gives me energy. When I take the time to notice the good things - the student who wished me good luck on the Praxis test this week, the fact that I have such a good relationship with my administrators, the TED Talk parody one of my students wrote - I feel more like I want to go back to school tomorrow and take on the world. I am kinder to students, I plan better lessons, and I am more willing to help other teachers.
See? I know how important it is to be a marigold! But it's so easy to get sucked into the walnut tree mentality. What do you do to stay positive as a teacher, and to help other teachers stay positive as well?
I'm studying again tonight, and oh so grateful for the Quizlet app. It's smart - it can tell when I'm getting stuck on a term, and it makes me study those terms over and over again. It's easy to use, and it doesn't feel as overwhelming as the 3 million page study guide I've been lugging back and forth for weeks. I took into Texas Roadhouse tonight and studied while we waited for our food. I studied in the car on the way to pick up a table for our new house. And I think I'll study just a touch more before I go to sleep.
But more important than Quizlet is my family. Melissa looked over my shoulder while I studied and helped me created mnemonics for those tricky terms (Bandura is social cognitive theory - being in a band is both social and cognitive). Mckenzie cheered every time I got one right. Dad talked me through some of the practice questions I didn't understand. And Mom created time for me to study.
If I pass this test, it will be because of Quizlet and 4 people who are cheering for me every step of the way.
I used to be really good at studying.
And it's not even like it's been that long since I really studied, but boy does my brain feel like it has. I've got to take the Praxis test this week, and I've put off studying for far too long, and now I'm trying to cram it all in (terrible habit, I know). I'm just hoping that some combination of my undergrad, my teaching experience, and this cramming will stick and help me figure out how to pass this test. Then I can get back to my own little teaching bubble in peace.
Teachers make the worst students, don't we?
My sister and I have lived in our house for almost 4 years now. We moved in with my grandpa the summer before I started my teaching internship and Melissa started her sophomore year at BYU. It's amazing to think how much has happened since we moved here. Both of us have now graduated from BYU. We've had 3 separate roommates (besides Grandpa). I started a book club, and Melissa and I started having "game brunch" on Saturdays. We've made lots of friends, gone on walks to look at new houses, and thrown awesome parties.
But now our time here is coming to an end. My grandpa moved to an assisted living center in November, and now he's selling this house. We have a few more weeks here, but my aunts and uncles came yesterday and cleaned most everything out. I noticed today that the house is starting to echo because it's getting more and more empty every day. I can't help but feel a little sad that this chapter in my life is closing.
People keep telling me, "It's so exciting to have a fresh start!" "You're going to love your new house." "What a fun new beginning!" And while I am excited for this new adventure, I can't help but feel a little trepidation. I've never been fond of the unknown, probably because I'm WAY too good at the "What if?" game. What if none of our friends call us to hang out anymore? What if we hate our new neighbors? What if we can't find furniture for the new house and we're left sleeping on the floor with no fridge? All the worst possible scenarios run through my head and I just want to say, "Never mind! We'll stay here forever!"
But then again, what if it's amazing? What if our new neighbors become our new best friends? What if this is exactly the fresh start I've been looking for?
I'm a daughter, sister, friend, and book lover turned English teacher. This blog is all about the things I'm learning as I go through my many adventures. For more info about me, check out the About Me page.