Friday, January 31, 2014

It's Coming

I have something planned... Something coming..  I'm excited.  My friends are too.

I can't tell you all what is yet, but I will soon!

Just another week until all of these items can be opened!!

What could be inside all of this?

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Snow Day

Tuesday through Thursday this week has been great!  The students have been out for the inclement weather all three days.  Myself and other educators had to return to work today half of the day.

I'm okay with that.  My daughter has had a wonderful week.  

Tuesday was a day for just her and me.  
Wednesday was a family day with all three of us home together.
Today is a day for just her and daddy.

It was a January dream spending extra time together and the rare treat of Middle Georgia snow along with it.  

Wednesday, January 29, 2014


CLL5 – The child will acquire meaning from a variety of materials read to him/her.
CLL5.4b Retells familiar stories.
WSO: Recounts some key ideas and details from text.

 Activities: Flannel Board.  Flannel story sets are easy to create from laminated paper with felt hot glued to the back to complex sewn felt projects.  Flannel story sets are also available for purchase from a variety of educational supply sources.

There Was An Old Lady.  There was so many how to's out there to make an old lady.  From small trash cans to empty boxes.  However you make your old lady, you simply need to print and laminate the items that go with her story.  From Swallowing a Fly to Swallowing a Pie and everything in between, this can be used frequently throughout the academic year.

Puppet Shows.  Some stories can be retold by use of puppets within the reading area.  

Drawing.  I had a student once retell in detail every bit of the story of Cinderella (Disney version) for a drawing she made.

Books: There Was An Old Lady series by: Lucille Colandro 
Pete the Cat series by: Eric Litwin
Bear Bear series by: Bill Martin Jr. (Brown Bear, Brown Bear to Panda Bear, Panda Bear)


CD-MA2 – The child will manipulate, compare, describe relationships and solve problems using number and quantity.
CD-MA2.4c Practices combining, separating and naming quantities.
WSO: Uses words and representations to describe mathematical ideas. 

Activities: Marble Combining.  Using two pool noodles, make the noodles connect together above an empty basket.  With this game you have students on each top opening add a small number of marbles.  For example Billy drops one and Sandy drops one so in our basket we should have ____.

Spotted Butterfly.  With a butterfly play-dough sheet; have students tear bits to go on each wing side.  Two bits on one side and two bits on the other make for how many bits of play-dough all together?

Lego Math.  Easy combination of blocks and math.  You can even scaffold this by beginning with simply combining a certain number of blocks to the number of raised pegs on each block combined.

Books: 10 Little Penguins Stuck on the Fridge by Jean-Luc Fromental
Mouse Count by Ellen Stoll Walsh


CD-SS4 – The child will demonstrate an awareness of economics in his/her community.
CD-SS4.4b Describes the roles and responsibilities of a variety of occupations.
WSO: Identifies some people’s jobs and what is required to perform them.

 Activities: Occupation in a Bag.  This is a send home activity for parents to do with their kids.  Each parent gets their own bag to fill with items that represent their job and what they do.  The students return the bags to school sharing the props and explaining their parents jobs with their peers.
Occupation BINGO.  Instead of numbers or letters, have pictures of various occupations on the bingo card.  Don't announce the job title but give clues about the job by talking about the requirements to do it (i.e. dentist: cleans teeth, checks for cavities, helps you care for your teeth).  The children announce which occupation it is then begin covering the correct image.

Books: Whose Hat is This? by: Sharon Katz Cooper
Martin's Hats by: Marc Simont


CD-SC3 – The child will demonstrate knowledge related to living things and their environments.
CD-SC3.4a Observes, explores and describes a variety of plants and animals. Describes their basic needs and life cycles of living things.
WSO: Explores the needs of living things.

 Activities: Life Cycle Sequencing.  Turn life cycle cards into magnets that children can work together (or with teacher-guidance) to put in order.

Pet Care Language Chart.  Before beginning this activity, discuss or read a book that discusses pet care.  Students take turns passing around a stuffed pet (dog, cat, fish, etc).  When they hold the pet, they dictate to the teacher what they would do to take care of their pet.  Teacher will write these on chart paper to display in the classroom.
Class Pet and Plant.  Have students rotate responsibility of caring for or assuring you in caring for the class pet and plants.  This gives them first-hand experience in understanding their needs.

Books: Big Yellow Sunflower by: Frances Barry
Listen to Your Fish by: Sarah Albee
Ladybugs by: Mia Posada

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Questions: Rapunzel

  • Rapunzel:5 things from your bucket list
  • 1) Visit Tokyo Disney, Disneyland Paris, Hong Kong Disney, and Shanghai Disney.
  • 2) Be a Renaissance Festival volunteer.
  • 3) Attend a masquerade ball.
  • 4) Have a paint fight.
  • 5) Stay in Cinderella's Castle.

What are your five?  Share your's below or in the comments!
Next Tuesday- Pocahontas:Something new you taught someone.

  • Monday, January 27, 2014

    That Which Shall Not Be Named

    What To Do If Someone Unintentionally Offends You:

    1. Take some time to cool down.  If you address the person right away your likely to add unwanted negativity to the situation.

    2. Express yourself.  Now that you are calm, express that you felt hurt or offended by their actions.  

    3. Explain specifically what they did to offend you.  If both sides are going to move to repair, then both sides must be aware of what actions led to you being offended.  Otherwise, you're going to feel offended again when they do those actions again.

    4. Forgive and forget.  Don't always bring up "that one time."  If it was unintentional, don't guilt them for what they didn't mean to do.

    5. If you can't do any of those things, don't take it out on people associated with that person.  They didn't mean to offend you any more than the person who did it unintentionally.

    Saturday, January 25, 2014

    Ep. 3: On the Night of the Ball

    This episode analysis(musing) contains spoilers.  This episode analysis skims over topics and doesn't go into huge detail because each detail is really worth it's own post.  This analysis does not cover every detail to analyze but ones that I have chosen to discuss.  Also, these are my opinions and nothing official.  You do not have to accept or agree with any of this.

    "Butōkai no yoru ni" 
    April 16, 1997
    No duel.

    Did you forget the story about the princess who was sad because her mom and dad just died?  I didn't think so because we open again to Utena reflecting on this.  I think her frequent reflection while her life was idle is interesting to note as we will begin to see her reflecting on this less frequently as time goes on.

    Utena awakens from the dream about her prince as she and Anthy dine together.  Alone in that giant dormitory.
    I find it interesting to note how Utena crosses over her fork and knife on her plate as she announces that she is done with the meal.  This act is very proper following formal table etiquette.  To be a prince or from her "royal" upbringing?  

    Anthy and Utena discuss their feelings about being the only ones there.  Utena longing for the company of others while Anthy is quite content in the silent atmosphere.  This will be important later in the episode.
    Walking to school Utena requests that Anthy stop calling her Utena-sama (Mistress Utena).  This request gets a little lost on Anthy as all of the schoolgirls are calling Utena "Utena-sama" as they pass through.  Utena tries to explain the difference between the schoolgirls saying it in admiration and Anthy saying it implying Utena having ownership over her but I honestly don't think she had a calm enough mind to properly articulate this.
    She tries to explain that contrary to how she might dress, she is interested in men.  Cue Touga.

    Touga demonstrates here that either he remembers what happened that day so long ago, Akio gave him the right cues to play off of, or his information gathering skills from his playboy abilities served him well.  He comments on her nobility, he runs his fingers through her hair just like he did back then, saying that he has the ring so he could meet her.  He's well-stacked with an arsenal of words and actions to throw Utena off of her game.
    Utena's reaction to seeing Touga with a rose seal isn't because she didn't know he was a duelist, he makes it clear early in their conversation.  I don't think Shena quite gotten used to the idea still of seeing the ring that she believed to be so special on another person.  She has only seen it on herself and Saionji before now. Even with Anthy having explained to her that people with that ring are marked as duelists, she still is growing accustomed to seeing this.  Seeing it almost made her believe, possibly somehow could it be? Touga her prince?

    Elevator with Touga delivering the egg speech and we're at the student council platform.  Only three members are present as Saionji has locked himself in his room since losing the duel with Utena.  You really don't see Saionji much ever at these meetings for the whole rest of the show any way so it really doesn't make that much of a difference.
    Anyway, the Student Council picks away at who Utena is and what her motivations could be in the duels.  No one is certain.  Except maybe possibly Touga?  Why indeed?

    Cut to Wakaba giving a hug attack to Utena as she observes Touga from an open window.  They need to shut those things.  Wakaba' gonna kill someone one of these days with her attack hugs. Wakaba identifies what we see with all of the girls flocking around Touga, he's a playboy.

    SLAP!  We're introduced to Keiko and the other lackies.  They come across as mean and cruel bullies which aren't stopped in their berating of Anthy until Nanami arrives.  Saving Anthy and acting so sweet and gentle.  A good front so that no one ever realizes Keiko and crew do Nanami's dirty work while keeping her hands clean.  I guess this presentation here of Nanami would be what most students see.  Sweet and caring popular girl.  We get to see so much more.

    Cut to Anthy playing Old Maid with Chu-Chu.  Shock gasp, guess who draws the old maid.  Foreshadow much?  So subtle, golf clap for you Ikuhara. 
    Dress delivery!  So Anthy's been nominated for "dance queen" and gets this pretty cute green dress.  Utena gets a pink dress with this GIANT red rose on the bust from our campus playboy.  No Chu-Chu!  Don't eat the packaging thing!

    Utena says that she isn't going so Anthy boxes up her dress noting that crowds unnerve her as everyone's faces begin to look the same.  I bet.  Especially after that one time they all came as an unruly mob to your door and stabbed you with the swords of hate.  I'd be apprehensive about crowds too if it happened to me.
    Utena then voices that Anthy needs to go.  She needs friends.  Ignoring everything Anthy has just told her about how she feels and pushes her ideals on Anthy.  I think Utena truly believes that she is helping Anthy by pushing that she expand her social circle, but sometimes to help you must respect people as they are.

    Shadow girl sequence.  What appears as a ball is really a man trap?  It's just a trap!  Run!!

    First glance of the Kiryuu residence and man are they loaded.  That place is HUGE.  At least three stories with chandeliers and party tables and more.  What?!  
    Oh and how I LOVE Nanami's gown.  That giant purple bow in that back is great!  She rocks that dress and I never get tired of seeing it.  She is seriously best dressed at the ball.
    We see how when she tries to childishly play with Touga on the balcony where she still clings to their sibling love and he is growing detached.  

    Wow, they have announcer at the ball in their house too?  Well, while this might look like the life people would love to trade places with the Kiryuu kids to have, we all know those halls are full of some dark secrets behind closed doors.  
    Enter Utena in that eh dress and I don't care what anyone says, the green dress looks cute on Anthy but she could totally lose the green hairbows.  She's not six, that ain't cute.
    Nanami divulges that she invited and dressed up Anthy because she's overheard her brother talking so much about her not even noticing that he's more captured with Utena.  Nanami pulls Anthy away from Utena to a place where all of the nominees must stand.  Heh, we'll get there but first; the ugliest face you'll see Touga make this whole series:

    Okay, so while Touga tries laying on his smooth talk to Utena let's return to Nanami and Anthy.  Nanami takes Anthy into the center of the room and then flits away, leaving Anthy to shut down.
    Back to Nanami's henchgirls (Yuuko winning best dressed out of that group) and we see Nanami's true face revealed. The dress Nanami sent Anthy is a "special" make that when sprayed with water is dissolves away.  It looks kind of scary how it melts away.  When I was younger I almost thought she was sprayed with acid or something.  
    Again, Nanami didn't do anything directly but had other people set this up for her.  
    This action plays poorly for Nanami but acts in Utena's favor.  Utena got really close to Touga and very open to him about her personal thoughts about him maybe being her prince.  The scream breaks that from happening but I think that also is the start of Touga's desire to obtain the one that escaped his charms.

    Utena tears off her dress restoring her princely attired which was underneath (bullshit, I saw that dress and I could see your shoulders).  What's interesting is this isn't just her school uniform, it is her dueling attire.  She's got the frills and whistles of it all.  She grabs a tablecloth and works some magic that would make Tim Gunn proud to create Anthy a new dress.  They dance around the room wowing the crowd (y'all think that's cool just wait until you see them dance in the movie).  
    Nanami is upset that her plan didn't work and Touga calls her out on the prank in a tone that shows this isn't the first time that he's had to put up with her queen bee nonsense.  Touga expresses disappointment that Utena took off the dress he sent which Nanami's ears sure did not miss hearing that.  Cue jealousy.  This episode clearly establishes Nanami and her crew.

    Big Brother gave a dress to her? To THAT girl?! 

    Friday, January 24, 2014

    Professional Photo Album

    Thursday, January 23, 2014

    Guest Blog: Pancakes

    Today's blog post comes from the amazing author of The Bon Bon Club, Virginia Bell!

    Pancakes are time consuming, despite the fact that you'd think fried batter could be quick.
    They need to be cooked over medium heat, and as the skillet gets hotter, you might even have to turn them down. Use *very* little oil or butter in the skillet.  Sometimes, I'll twist a bit of butter into a paper towel and use that to swipe the pan with.
    You have to wait, in my case impatiently, for dry bubbles. They pop and don't refill.  They need to be all over the top of your pancake, otherwise it's too runny and soft to turn.
    These three show what the pancake looks like after turning.  Too hot and it looks a little scorched. Lower and slower make the browning more uniform.

    And once you've turned it, it takes just a little for the bottom to get done. Maybe 30 seconds. It's done through when you flip it, but you want the back to brown a bit for prettiness.
    And once you've turned it, it takes just a little for the bottom to get done. Maybe 30 seconds. It's done through when you flip it, but you want the back to brown a bit for prettiness.
    To keep them warm, put your oven on the lowest setting and put them in there on a cookie sheet or pie pan till you're done with the batch.  I use a tablespoon of batter for silver dollar pancakes, and 1/4 c for regular ones. That way they're relatively uniform, and I know how many I can get out of a batch.

    My favorite pancake recipe:
    1c All purpose flour
    2t baking powder
    1/2t salt
    1c Milk
    1 egg
    1T oil

    Mix dry ingredients first, then add wet ones, blend till it's mixed, but don't worry about the lumps.

    That makes 4 silver dollars and 8 regular pancakes.  Or 9 regular pancakes.  To spruce it up, add a couple teaspoons of sugar.  That makes it a bit more crispy too.  As a tsp of real vanilla or a couple of imitation vanilla.  Cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, whatever makes you happy.

    For your own bisquick, one cup = 1 c flour, 1 and 1/4 t baking powder, 1/4 t salt, 1 T shortening or butter.  

    Mix the dry ingredients, then work the shortening or butter in until it's all pretty uniform.  If you use butter, you have to keep it in the fridge.  If you use shortening, you can scale up the recipe and make it in big batches to use later.

    The flour is all purpose.  If you use self rising, leave out the baking powder.  And the salt.   Self rising flour and shortening would be all you would need.

    My Questions to the Guest Blogger:
    So a tablespoon of butter might have been too much? Yeah, a Tbsp is a lot.  I shave off a sliver. Just a teensy tiny one, and that lasts for a couple-three pancakes.
    If I'm not using a griddle but a pan am I set to fail at pancakes? I use a skillet. I don't own a griddle. I actually like a small skillet to cook pancakes in, because if I can't get the damned spatula under it to turn it, I can just pick the skillet up and tilt it to slide the pancake onto the spatula.  I hate chasing them around the damned pan. 

    Wednesday, January 22, 2014

    GELDS: CLL5.4a

    CLL5 – The child will acquire meaning from a variety of materials read to him/her.
    CLL5.4a Prior to reading, uses prior knowledge, story title and pictures to make predictions about story content.
    WSO: DECAL correlation posting has this indicator as: Gains meaning by listening.
     This is really odd because when you read the definition of that in the Work Sampling Omnibus, that has nothing to do with it.  This is about prior to reading processes.  This is about using images to make predictions.  I personally think this indicator would mesh more appropriately with: Shows appreciation and understanding of books and reading.
     Activities: Before and After Chart.  While students are making predictions about the story content, write them on the left-side of a chart paper.  What will happen, who will the story be talking about, where will the story take place.  After reading the book, fill in the right-hand side of the chart with the corresponding details of what actually happened in the book.  
    Any books can be done with this activity.  This activity could be a small group literacy or a large group literacy activity.

    GELDS: MA2.4b

    CD-MA2 – The child will manipulate, compare, describe relationships and solve problems using number and quantity.
    CD-MA2.4b Counts at least 10 objects using one- to-one correspondence. 
    WSO: Counts with understanding. 

     This is a move up from where we just were in MA2.4a.  There was matching one item to another and this is attaching a number to an item.  Having six bears, pointing to each going "one, two, three, four, five, six."
    It is important to note how these standards scaffold.  You begin with one and continue moving on to the next as your students master that indicator.

    Activities: Board Games.  This could be Hi-Ho Cherry-O or something that you've printed and laminated.  When they roll or spin, you can not only get students identifying the numeral but then counting a number for each space or object they move.

    Mother May I.  Students ask to move certain ways a certain number of times to reach an end location "Mother may I jump three times?"  Use large cardboard dice; one with actions and the other with numbers that they can roll to count out their movements.

    BONUS: change your spinners and numeral dice for dot dice.  Then they also must count each dot on the side to identify the number of spaces or actions to take.

    Books: Ten Chirpy Chicks by Debbie Tarbett
    Ten in the Bed by Penny Dale

    GELDS: SS4.4a

    CD-SS4 – The child will demonstrate an awareness of economics in his/her community.
    CD-SS4.4a Completes jobs to contribute to his/her community and communicates why it is important.
    WSO: Demonstrates awareness of rules.
     Activities: Job Charts. Have children contribute jobs that they could perform as part of the classroom community.  Easy jobs from super sanitizer to bathroom monitor.  Create enough jobs for each student to be able to contribute to the classroom community daily.

    Books: How Do Dinosaurs Go to School? by: Jane Yolen
    How To Be A Friend by: Laurie Kransy Brown
    What if Everybody Did That? by: Ellen Javernick

    GELDS: SC2.4d

    CD-SC2 – The child will demonstrate knowledge related to the dynamic properties of earth and sky.
    CD-SC2.4d Uses appropriate vocabulary to discuss climate and changes in weather. 
    WSO: Observes weather and seasonal changes.
     Activities: Pinwheels.  Pinwheels and streamers are great tools for students to observe the affects of the wind.  

    Sun Bleached Art.  Students place stencils or toys on their paper and place them outside in the sun.  The next day students bring in their papers to observe how the sun drained color from the paper that was exposed leaving the outline of the object.
    Rain Painting.  (Link)
    The key thing is to use vocabulary to develop the students vocabulary in this area.
    Books: The Wind Blew by: Pat Hutchins
    The Rain Came Down by: David Shannon
    A Tree for All Seasons

    Tuesday, January 21, 2014

    Questions: Aurora

    • Aurora:Story of your first kiss
    • They say you'll never forget your first kiss.  
    • I can tell you who.  I can tell you where.  But there really was little story to it on my end.
    • I suppose not since I was the one being kissed.  It wasn't really a surprise attack kiss or anything but I wasn't planning it.  I could see probably more for the guy kissing it there is some amazing tale of nervousness and feelings and stuff.
    • Not that I didn't have those or whatever.  I was a teenage kid in high school.  Of course it was the usual:

    • What if I'm a bad kisser?
    • What if he's a bad kisser?
    • What if I'm a bad kisser but will never know because I assume that he's the reason the kiss sucked?
    • What if my mouth is yucky?
    • Is there going to be tongue?  Do I even want there to be tongue?  What do I do with a tongue in my mouth if there is one?
    • What if my parents get mad because I kissed?

    HAHA!  I'm sorry, those are all funny questions to me now.  

    I remember going to a museum or something once as a kid that was focused on electricity or something like that.  They had these two mannequins on a porch front almost kissing and an electrical spark going between their mouths.  That sounds scary but it looked SO cool to me.  The idea that when two people share a first kiss that there could seriously be sparks.  
    Of course I never shared that story with anyone I dated at that age.  Who in their right mind would take a girl's first kiss with high expectations like that?
    There were no real electrical sparks going on to my sadness but it still was a good kiss.  One of my better and far from my worse.

    Monday, January 20, 2014

    24 Hours of FUN

    Molly came up with a brilliant plan Friday night.  Saturday at 8 pm, we would all change our profile pictures to someone else at the table.  I claimed Josh B, Megan claimed me, and so on until we were all mixed around.
    We must keep our profile pictures as our person for 24 hours.  We could use any picture from Facebook OR anything from the camera rolls on our phone.  Those were our only rules really.
    Saturday 8 pm, it was go time.  Some of us got our pictures up on the dot.  Some of us had to remember how to use Facebook.  Some of us had to be yelled at to post their new picture.

    Then the real fun began as instead of simply changing our profile pictures, we started posting pictures, videos, status updates, comments and more in our temporary personalities.  Except Josh Davis who decided to post anything Molly exactly opposite of her true feelings which made things even more hilarious.
    Some people caught on and enjoyed, some people didn't care, and some people didn't get what was going on.  For the privileged few that are friends with all of us, we hope that you enjoyed the performance because we sure did.

    Here's some screenshots of our madness:
    Molly loves Harry Potter like I love Utena.

    Megan posting as me.  I almost died reading Josh's comment!

    The pictures here for Josh and me are people that are in a long-term relationship of awesome so many of Josh and my comments are sweet talk at each other. Because we can!

    Then we changed our cover photos to also compliment our temporary personalities.  

    Pictures of our profile person's pets even!

    This was awesome because my profile person was going on and on in messenger that we stop our Facebook rampage of awesome so that he could finish watching Sherlock.  Okay, I can comply with that.

    Clearly, we love each other very much.