Today I had recess duty. In my school all of the teachers take turns watching the kids at recess. Usually I totally forget about this until a teacher strolls in my room at lunchtime to give me a break since I’ll be on duty at recess and I generally give the reliever teacher a “deer in the headlights” look.
Anyway, when recess rolled around, there were 8 boys against the wall doing penance for various infractions in which they lose precious recess time. The sad part was that they were all of my boys!!! I knew it wasn’t just me because a veteran recess teacher came up to me, surveyed the boys and said, “Oh, yeah, those faces look familiar from last year!”
But I’ll keep on them till they finally see the light. They are great kids—just can’t stop talking when it’s listening time! Ugh! But I’m glad they are in my class—I love the boys!
This week I’ve been thinking about how time is passing too quickly. Earlier this week, I received the 40th anniversary booklet of my high school reunion. I didn’t attend since it was on the other coast from where I live but I did want to see how my former high school peers were doing.
The thing that struck me was how many of my classmates are GRANDPARENTS! How did that happen? I was just dumbstruck at that revelation. I should have realized that would be the case since I attended the 20th reunion and found that most of my peers had teenagers while I had a baby and a toddler at that time. So why should I be surprised at what’s happened now? But it still blew me away at where people are at and how they looked.
Then I saw an article from the writer, Mitch Albom, on that same subject this week in the Detroit Free Press. He has just released a new book called, The Timekeeper. But he was writing about similar issues I have been having—how time is passing by so quickly and I need to accomplish more living (and writing) and less planning. So that’s my goal is to make more time for my passion of writing while still teaching school. I tend to let school take over my life for 10 months and then write the other two. But now I vow to better balance my priorities throughout the year.
Cartoon of the night by Pat Byrnes. For more: http://nyr.kr/U6w2X7
I know a lot of you do the “eat and work” thing, as I usually do. Try to force yourself to take the time to sit and enjoy your lunch. With or without co-workers. Just take the time to regroup, replenish, etc… Remember, there is no reward for being or looking the busiest. You will be more productive when you are slightly rested and refreshed. It’s amazing what 15-30 minutes of stillness can do for you.
12 Characteristics Of An iPad-friendly Classroom -
An awesome overview. I’ve included three below. Click through for the rest!Assessment is…
- Authentic (less academic)
Seamlessly transfers to physical and digital domains of learner, with useful artifacts, products, and applications in the “real world”
- Frequent & Formative (less intermittent and summative)
A climate of assessment that yields simple data digestible to all stakeholders–including the teacher
- Fluid and/or Project-Based (less obsessed with standards and “proficiency”)
“Fluid” assessment provides a constant stream from a wide variety of sources and forms. This is possible in Problem-based, Challenge-based, or Community-Based projects that reward innovation, risk-taking, self-awareness, and inductive thinking patterns
A Sunday morning cartoon by Roz Chast: http://nyr.kr/MoBMGq
Five Smart Habits to Develop for Back to School -
2. BECOME AN EXPERT IN ONE TOOL
There are at least half a dozen apps and software for every job. Should you use Diigo, Delicious, eduClipper, Pinterest, or BagTheWeb to collect links? Is Photoshop, GIMP, Pixlr, or FotoFlexer the right photo-editing software? It’s overwhelming, and there really is no single right answer. (For the record, though, Diigo is great because of its iOS app and GIMP works well because it’s both free and powerful.) So pick one class of tools and become a ninja in how to use one of the leading tools in that class. Skills from one platform are transferable to the others. You will benefit from learning everything about whatever tool you choose.
What author haven’t you read because you don’t know where to start? We all have at least one, right?
Today, we are launching a Kickstarter campaign to create, produce, and distribute a book version of our popular Reading Pathways feature that we’ve re-named Start Here: Read Your Way Into 25 Amazing Authors, so you’ll never again miss out on an awesome reading experience just because you don’t know where to start.
This is something I’m working on.
Great. Now I’m worried that I’m worrying to much.