Teachers, it’s that special time of year where we often spend too much money to make our classrooms look their very best. Although I haven’t discovered a solution to prevent over spending, I have become more conscious of how much money I am spending on my classroom by creating a simple “Educator Expense Tracker” for my planner. If you would like a copy, please use the download link below. 🙂
I’ve never been overly excited about Halloween, but I’d like to take a moment to share something that really brightened my day—I was booed.
I’m not sure who started this at my school, but I’d love to say thank you. This small gesture truly cheered me up and it was just what I needed before I had to administer PSATs this morning. It’s always appreciated when a gesture of kindness unexpectedly comes my way and I am extremely excited to pay it forward. I hope this post inspires you to do something kind for your fellow teachers regardless of what holiday is on the horizon. In Texas, we are at the end of the quarter (9 weeks marking period) and I think we could all use a boost in morale. 🙂
A popular expression says, “Teachers encourage minds to think, hands to create, and hearts to love.” Well last week, I received some of the fruit from my labor when my Early College students chose my classroom door to decorate for a Valentine’s Day contest.
My students worked for weeks to complete an elaborate design for my door, a Sweethearts box with my name spelled out in the window and a Valentine’s Day poem. 🙂
This sweet gesture was absolutely the best design in the entire school. Needless to say, my students won the door decorating contest and made me feel extra special in the process.
Happy Teacher Appreciation Week!!!
I don’t know about you, but I’m having one of the nicest Teacher Appreciation weeks ever. However, I can’t help but note the irony of National Teacher Appreciation Week coinciding with STAAR testing. Nonetheless, I’m grateful for the acknowledgement we, teachers, receive and I thought I’d take a moment to share how my Teacher Appreciation Week is going thus far.
At my school, teachers received a small goodie bag with a can of coke, a bag of chips, and a Whataburger certificate. Then, this morning, we had a Teacher Appreciation breakfast with pastries, coffee, and juice. However, what has truly made my week so far are small acts of kindness from my students.
One of my students drew me a picture.
Another wrote me one of the most beautiful thank you notes of my career. (BTW: Ding! is the catchphrase I use when my students get a question correct in class.)
My 8th period drew me a witty picture (the misspellings are intentional).
Then the National Hispanic Honor Society gave us the most delicious Mexican cookies in honor of both Cinco de Mayo and Teacher Appreciation Day. Yummmmm!!!!
And just when I thought my day couldn’t get any better, I discovered in the parking lot that my “happy friends” had decorated my car with some of my classroom catchphrases. Wow! What an awesome day!
Please share in the comments below how is your Teacher Appreciate Week/Day progressing. I’d love to know which activities your school does to recognize teachers. Also, what special ways did your students acknowledge you during this week.? 🙂
One of my seniors visited her family in Galveston, Texas during Easter break and returned to El Paso with a gift for me–a hand-carved lion pen. Wow … how thoughtful!!! Although I truly loved receiving this gift, it means so much more to know that my students are thinking of me even when they are so far away from school. 🙂
“Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.” William Arthur Ward
I am so proud of my Lit. Critters (also known as my University Interscholastic League Literary Criticism Team). While I have only coached them for two months, they did an outstanding job at the district UIL competition and won 1st place. Hopefully, our team will be as successful at the state competition in a few weeks. Wish us luck!!!
PS. Although we definitely believe in good sportspersonship, “We came; we saw; we slaughtered” has become my Lit. Critters team mantra. It is a modern spin off derived from Julius Caesar’s “Veni, vidi, vici” which is Latin for “I came; I saw; I conquered.” And yes, we’re nerdy like that. LOL. 🙂
OMG!!! I’m so excited. Our iPads finally got a much needed upgrade from being charged on rigged up dish racks.
It’s that dreaded time of year…test season. I’ve been in and out of the classroom helping with our End of Course ELA Pullout Program for our senior re-testers and guess what? My students actually missed me. I returned late in afternoon, to the English wing, and unexpectedly found a present waiting for me–a chalk drawing with my signature catchphrase for my students (fondly known in my classroom as “happy friends”).
This chalk drawing spanned from the front of the English wing until the edge of the railings near our Fine Arts building.
Honestly, I can’t remember when I’ve smiled so much and been so genuinely surprised. I showed every teacher and administrator in my path pictures of one of the most heartfelt gifts of my career. It’s days like this that make teaching worth it. 🙂
Gandhi so aptly said, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” As teachers, we use this quote nearly to the point of cliché. However, how often do we apply this concept beyond working with our students?
Given the critical nature of the press and public towards teaching, maybe it’s time we do more than transform our classroom. Maybe it’s time we also transform the public perception of our profession.
This spring, “Teach Like Me” will launch its 2nd annual campaign to publicize and increase public awareness of the positive contributions teachers make. On May 5, 2015, “Teach Like Me” asks educators and supporters to change their profile pictures on social media sites like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to one of their custom Teach Like Me logos (available here). Then use social media with the hashtag #TeachLikeMe to share/tweet/post what you teach and why you love teaching. However parents, students and other members of the public can also use the hashtag to show their support, appreciation, and encouragement of teachers. For more information on “Teach Like Me,” please visit http://www.teachlikeme.org.
I am excited about participating and I hope you are too! 🙂
Welcome to the new home of “A Teacher’s Life” blog!!! As you may know, the previous site for “A Teacher’s Life” was http://nhill8.edublogs.org/. However, I am relaunching the blog under a new site address because I would like a fresh start and the opportunity to take “A Teacher’s Life” in a new direction.
Ultimately, what I would like to accomplish in the new and improved version of “A Teacher’s Life” is more authenticity and transparency. In my previous blog, I think I lost myself. I shared ideas about educational leadership and gathered inspirational resources, but my life, ideas, and practices as a teacher were pretty much absent.
In many ways, the old version of my blog was hopelessly optimistic and that’s not always the reality of my teaching life. Don’t get me wrong—I love teaching, but there is plenty I am frustrated with and I want to be more open about that. While I don’t want this blog to turn into a gripe fest, it’s also not going be all sunshine and roses either.
In fact, my inspiration to education blog was Mrs. Mimi’s “It’s Not All Flowers and Sausages” blog. Her blunt honesty (although achieved anonymously) about her second grade classroom and the insanity of public school teaching made me long for a voice of my own. [Although Mrs. Mimi’s blog is currently inactive, I dare you to key word search her blog for “The Weave.” These stories left me in tears from laughing so hard and it’s an added bonus that my school looks like paradise compared to hers.] So with that said, please excuse the dust while I build anew. 🙂
PS. If you were previously subscribed to “A Teacher’s Life,” no worries, your subscription has been transferred.