Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Focusing on my OLW

I started picking One Little Word back in 2015.  I LOVE this concept!  Picking one word to focus on all year just... did it for me the way resolutions do not.

I seemed to always fail at my resolutions.  I made too many.  I didn't make enough.  I forgot all about them by January 3.

When I learned about OLW back in late 2014 I jumped on the idea.  How "easy" would it be to focus on one little word?

For me it made a difference.  It gave me:
  • a focus.
  • a purpose.
  • something to work on.
It was just what I needed.  I'm not much on journaling or self-reflection but having a OLW helped me do some reflection even if I didn't write it down.  It also helped me self-correct behaviors I wanted to work on.  

I'm looking forward to my time with my OLW, choose, this year.  But I started wondering how I could focus even more on my OLW throughout the year.  I'm going to make an infographic like I do every year.  I made a little... thingy (that's the technical term) to put on my blog last year and I'll do that again this year.  But I want to do more with choose this year.

So I've been thinking.
  • I want the word more visible than just the infographic I hang in my office and the thingy on my blog.
  • I'm going to take pictures and/or make note of the things I choose to make a scrapbook that I'll print at the end of the year.
  • I'm going to write one weekly blog about my OLW.
  • I found some cuff bracelets I can customize on Etsy.  I going to have one made to wear daily.

Do you do a OLW?  What's your OLW?  How do you stay focused on your OLW throughout the year?

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

Disclaimer: I receive a small percentage from books purchased using the links below.

For School:

I received my Junior Library Guild subscription and have been reading my way through the box.

 I Am Not a Number by Jenny Kay Dupuis and Kathy Kacer was a moving book based on a true story. Irene and her family live on Nipissing First Nation in Canada.  At 8 years old Irene and two of her brothers are taken from their family by the Canadian government and sent to a residential school where they suffered abuse and were malnourished for the school year.  Upon returning home they told their parents of the abuse.  Their parents vowed to break the law, hide their children and never send them back to the school.

 Hilda and the Stone Forest (Hildafolk) by Luke Pearson is an adventure graphic novel.  Hilda has a secret life.  A life that is mixed up with all kinds of creatures and monsters.  She often lies to her mum about where she's going and what she's doing until her mum catches her sneaking through the wall.  When mom gets in a tug of war with Hilda they end up somewhere a bit... scary.

Dino-Racing by Lisa Wheeler is another cute book in the Dino sports series.  The rhyming is catchy. There is a lot of vocabulary if you don't know much about racing.  And I don't.  The dinosaurs race for 3 days across different terrains.  And you won't believe who wins the race!

How to Be a Hero by Florence Parry Heide has a little boy named Gideon in it who wants to be a hero.  Everything he knows about heroes he learned from fairy tales.  And all the heroes had to kiss a girl.  Ewww!  Gideon wonders into a grocery store to buy a candy bar where he was the ten thousandth customer to buy something!  His picture gets put on the front page and he gets to get a candy bar whenever he wants!  But wait... did a lady fall and drop her baby?

How This Book Was Made by Ma Barnett is a book I cannot wait to read to students before our author visit next month.  Barnett describes how books are made adding little twists that are funny. Adam Rex, the illustrator, does an amazing job adding to the story with his drawings!  The reader will learn all kinds of facts.  My favorite was that Barnett had 21 rough drafts.  21!

Hank's Big Day: The Story of a Bug by Evan Kuhlman and Chuck Groenink is a story of friendship. An odd friendship between a young girl and a pill bug.  After the pill bug eats a yummy dead leaf for breakfast he ventures past crickets, and worms and ants and other creepy crawlies to meet his best friend Amelia who takes him on an adventure.

A Hat for Mrs. Goldman: A Story About Knitting and Love by Micelle Edwards is a story about an older hispanic lady who teacher a young hispanic girl how to knit hats and pom-poms and do good deeds for others.  Sophia quickly realizes that Mrs. Goldman needs a hat too but won't knit herself one because she is too busy doing good deeds for others.  So Sophia knits her a hat.  But it's not very good and Sophia has to get creative.

Penguin Problems by Jory John Do you know some one who complains about everything? Like. Every. Thing.  That's penguin.  He complains about every single thing he can possibly complain about.  Then he meets a wise walrus who reminds him of the good things.  It helps... for awhile.

My Name Is James Madison Hemings by Jonah Winter is a book about James' life as a slave.  It's told in first person so we learn who his father is at the same time the he learn who his father is.  We are privy to the emotions of this knowledge and the questions James has about this.

I received a couple of free books from Capstone.

Winter: The Coldest Season of All! (My First Science Songs) by Lisa Bell is a sing-a-long book that comes with a CD.  I don't think I've every read a book like this before to my students.  I plan on reading it and playing the CD during story time sometime in the month of January.

Comp Day

Today is a Comp Day for me.  No school!

1.  I'm so glad I did the training this past summer so I could have this day off though I wasnt thrilled about it this summer. Ha!

2.  I get to sleep in!

3.  I get to sit and enjoy my coffee instead of drinking it on the run.

4.  Reagan has PE the last period of the day so I'm picking her up early from school.

5.  I get to serve hot lunch at my daughter's school.  Which I haven't been able to do in the 8 1/2 years she's been at this school.  I send my parents and my mother-in-law to serve in my place but today I get to do it and I'm excited!

Bullet Journal

My bullet journal is really coming along.  I'm quiet proud of it.

I'm not a journaller or a writer (like the physical act of writing).  I don't like paper and pen so I wasn't sure how this would go.  It's a lot of paper and a lot of pen.

I don't like journalling.  But I have a blog... go figure.  I think my idea of journalling is writing down all your feelings and documenting your day.  And although that is part of it, I've learned though bullet journaling that it can be more creative than that.

I've scoured Pinterest for ideas and tweaked pages for myself.  I'm going to feature a page here on Thursdays to show what I've done.  Please share your ideas with me!

Here's my Index.  I've loved this Index!  It's made finding pages so easy.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Wordless Wednesday

Grandad and Granddaughter 

2nd (Half) Hour of Coding

My first (half) hour of coding left me... shocked.  You can read more here.  It did not go as I had planned.  At. All.

So yesterday was our second time to meet.  I had higher hopes that this meeting would go better but I did not set my expectations as high as I did for the first meeting.

I should have though.

Oh my word!  This meeting was awesome!!!

Most students logged right into their emails then were able to create an account on the Code website.  In the end we didn't need to log into email.  I thought they were going to have to verify their accounts through their email.  I must of mixed it up with another site though.

Then I let them loose.  And they ran with it.  Some students needed a little bit of guidance.  So I helped those who needed it.  It got to where the students who were able to jump right in and swim would help those who needed a bit of help.  I loved seeing the students helping each other.

As the courses got harder I did have to step in and give some tips.  But on the whole students were able to teach themselves.

I cannot tell you how pleased I am after this meeting.  I was starting to question my sanity after the first meeting.  Ha!  But this meeting left me ready to take over the world!  Or at least my little world.

Monday, January 9, 2017

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

Disclaimer: I receive a small percentage of the books purchased through the links below.

For Pleasure:

I finished The Hypnotist's Love Story: A Novel by Liane Moriarty.  I read this book for book club.  I love Moriarty's books!  I have now read all the books she has published.

I really liked this book!  It hooked me the first few pages.  It's told from two Points of View.  One is the hypnotist's POV and the other is from the her fiance's stalker's POV.  I loved reading the stalker's POV.  I liked hearing how she justified stalking her ex, his son and his new fiance.  It was interesting to me how the hypnotist wasn't scared of the stalker.  She was intrigued by her.

I started The Dark Days of Hamburger Halpin by Josh Birk.  Will Halpin is a deaf students who doesn't fit in at the Deaf school and get special permission to attend his local high school.  Will is also overweight.  He has a hard time fitting in not only because of his deafness but also his weight.   I'm about 1/3 of the way through this book and so far so good!

For School:

Last week I read Race Car Count by Rebecca Kai Dotlich.  This book on the Texas 2x2 award list. Each race car is numbered and has it's own special color.  Each page rhymes and introduces a new car.  The students and I enjoyed looking at the illustrations.  Sometimes the illustration told more of a story than the words.