what i learned this week #4

1. In order to pop a 6 in the game of Trouble, one should “talk smack in your head,” according to my daughter.  “It didn’t work,” I said.  “Welllp, it works for me on my journey,” said my oh-so-wise 7 year old.

2. Clear, hanging shoe organizers are the answer.  I’ve had a clean countertop all week!organized

3. “Super Duper Pooper” is even funnier performed in a spot-on cockney accent by my oh-so-wise 7 year old.

4.  I really long to celebrate Easter in a much bigger, completely uncheesy way.  The Easter Bunny didn’t come to our house, and my eldest noticed.  “It must have been the rain.”  And that’s a story too long for this type post.

4. Among the many, often short-lived, usually unwanted nicknames that I have received in 3 decades, “Bag Lady” should have been one of them.  In my dejunking (let’s not fool ourselves here with the word “clutter”) frenzy, I went through 4 large tote bags full of teaching stuff.  Each one was like a time capsule.  My favorite was apparently from 2005-2006.  Here are some of the more remarkable items I rescued trashed.dejunking1. My husband’s license that expired in 2006.  Pardon the mustaches to protect his identity.  I prefer them not on his face.  2. Eight-year-old lip gloss anyone?  3.  Cassette tapes!!  YES!  I showed them to my kids and they were like “Wha?”  4.  A birthday card for Megan.  I hope I called.  5. Phone cards and a NetZero CD.  Doesn’t that seem ancient?!  6. Two of the three hole punches I found.  No need to trash those!  7. My husband’s lanyard ID for summer camp when he was a youth pastor.  8. These are still cool, right?  No, they didn’t work.  9. A mini cassette! I guess I love all forms of media.

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new shoes, a dream, & a happy dance

These shoes are one of my favorite things today.  B feels infinitely cool in them, refers to them as his ‘rockstar’ shoes, and informed and proved to us that they’re fast.  A new pair of stellar shoes, like a fresh haircut, is like a new lease on life to me.  Going shoe shopping the first school night of the year is a new one for me, but we have all learned to be pretty flexible considering the number of meetings, lessons, and rehearsals that must be attended by either Mom or Dad most nights of the week.

Tomorrow, I think I may get a real roster.  By real, I mean more than 5 students in each class.  That’s the hope, anyway!  The poor guidance counselor practically lives at the school, so if he decides to eat dinner at home tonight instead of changing schedules at 7 PM, I’ll get over it.

Some teachers look at me with crazy eyes when I say I want more students, but would you want to try to lead a choir with 3 people in it?  We aren’t the Andrews Sisters, people.  Although one time, I did have 5 freshman girls who sang SSA music, and I kind of felt like B in his shoes.  (Non-Musician timeout:  SSA means soprano-[2nd]soprano-alto.  In other words, they sang 3-part harmony.)  It’s my dream for this school to have a choir that represents them well in the community.  I’d love to hear people saying things like, “They’re small, but they’re good!”  “Did you know 12 kids could sound like that?!”  “I thought those kids were too bad to be out in public, but they were great today.”

Another favorite thing today?  Calling my husband on the way home from work and being able to say that I executed a certain teaching strategy better than ever before.  The assignment that used to get practically no results actually got kids thinking and talking today.  —doing my little celebration dance–  

Why was it more successful?  Because I broke it down further than I ever have before.  Itty bitty, teeny tiny baby steps help people who have previously been unsuccessful feel that success is possible.  {REMEMBER THAT, ME!}  Teachers call it scaffolding.  Parents call it raising kids.