Lordy that's a lot of work.
Before I started full time teaching, I had plenty of time to journal about my experiences and to blog about what was going on in my life. And now, that there's infinitely more happening and so many things I want to write down and remember, my time for doing so is sparse at best. So I'm carving out some time now to catch you up on the highlights of working with Kindergartners.
Highlight 1: FIELD TRIP
We had our first field trip with our class a couple of weeks ago. And think about it - it wasn't just our class' first field trip. For a good majority of these kids, we had the joy of taking them on their first field trip ever. EEP! SO FUN. We all loaded onto a bus to truck out to Charlotte to visit Zootastic: an informal, interactive zoo/wildlife center. The kids got to pet a ferret, a snake, a macaw, a opossum, and even a baby kangaroo. They got to scurry around, feed the animals, eat outside, and play zookeeper. They were crazy happy. And it was a really good day.
Highlight 2: LETTING THE KIDS RUN
A couple different times now, we have taken our classroom outside of the classroom, for things like a living/non-living scavenger hunt, or a leaf hunt to make our leaf wreath. Can I just say, it is a joy to watch these kids scatter across the field, electric with excitement, actively engaged in the learning, and loving it. Talk about happiness. I hope with all I have that they have fun learning in the classroom, but it's wonderful to watch how much fun they have when they're learning outside.
Highlight 3: APPLE SAUCE
To celebrate the beginning of fall, we made apple sauce. The kids each got to hold an apple, tell us what they saw, what they felt. Then my teacher whipped out one of those awesome peel-and-core-the-apple contraption. Y'all. I had never seen one of those before. It was so cool how it just whipped out the apples and you end up with this long string of curly apple. Then we simmered it all together with cinnamon and brown sugar and we had warm apple sauce by the end of the day. Anything that is different from our daily routine is exciting to the kids, and if it's different and involves food, you know they're going to be all over it.
Highlight 4: PUMPKINS
When Halloween rolled around, of course we had to carve a pumpkin. The kids got to vote on which face I carved into the pumpkin and once we got past that, we had to talk about how to give me directions to carve it. I told them the story about how my 2nd grade teacher Mrs. Craig asked us to give her instructions to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and how that resulted in her doing silly things like scooping and spreading peanut butter with her hands instead of her knife. The kids loved it. Each of them also got to stuck their hands into the pumpkin and squish the guts and the seeds around. But that wasn't the best part. I promised the kids that the very last thing we would do in class on Halloween before they left for the day would be to sit down, turn off all the lights, close the blinds, and light a candle inside the jack-o-lantern and and look at it all together. And we did. And y'all. It was such a sweet moment with those kids. As I held the pumpkin in my lap I could see the light on all of their smiling faces. The loved it.
Highlight 5: A HAPPY KID
This is hands down my favorite teaching moment to date. One of our little boys came into school gripping his pencil with his whole fist, and consequently his handwriting was barely legible. We decided to break his pencil down to a little stub and introduce him to a special pencil grip. I was worried that he would get frustrated, that it wouldn't work, or that he would complain that the grip was hurting his hand. But oh my. He started using it, and after only a few minutes he comes bounding over to me shouting "Ms. Walker, Ms Walker, it works it really works!!!!" I hope I never forget that moment. He was so happy, so very very happy.
Non teaching highlights of the past few weeks:
I went to the fair. The Dixie Classic fair. It's the local fair here in town and it is precious. After being here for four years, this was my first year to actually get to go. We ate fried food, people watched, and did one ride. I'm convinced that as long as I go to the fair, even until I'm old and using a cane, I will always always go on this ride. Do you know the one? Its the swing ride. Dang I love that thing. It was such a joy to get to leave kindergarten where I'm the "adult" and get to go to the fair and be the kid. I've missed that.
My parents came to visit, which is always a highlight. We had a quality weekend just catching up and spending time together. They are so fun. It's also always sad to see them go. Thankfully though I'll be heading down to Florida in about two weeks for my cousins wedding and I'll get to see them again, along with all of my siblings who I haven't seen since August! WHEEEEEEEEEE!!!!
Now that I've caught you up on all that, like I said, I'll be posting again soon to tell all of the wonderful tales from my final month of student teaching.
Ciao and Merry Christmas!