Sunday, January 30, 2011

7th Grade Heartbreak

This title implies that my students go through a lot of young love and young heartbreak; don't get me wrong that is definitely true, but this post is about a different kind of heartbreak. 

On Friday night I worked the 7th grade basketball tournament. It was a wonderful display of 7th grade talent! ha The games are very amusing and I really love watching them! I wasn't located in the gym that our girls played in, but my gym finished a game earlier than the first gym. So even though I was finished for the night, I stayed to watch the 9 pm that our Heritage girls were playing. They played a team called Meadowbrook. An all minority (mainly African-American) school from Fort Worth where you could say they were most likely from a poorer part of town. This team also included a 5"11 7th grader!!! Heritage already has zero height to our team, but were a very quick and talented team made up of mostly soccer players. We could tell from the beginning it was going to be a good game. At halftime we were up by one point 15-14, and we had definitely ruffled Meadowbrook's feathers. Their girls were screaming at each other and their coach was just letting them. The second half was just as exciting. We were down 6 points in the 3rd quarter, but by the end of the 3rd we were up by 2 points. As time was winding down we were still ahead by one point. Meadowbrook had the ball and put up a shot. The shot didn't go in and there was a scramble on the floor; time expired and we all started cheering, until the refs got together to talk. They decided to call a foul on us and Meadowbrook got to shoot two free throws with everyone standing behind the line. I think they had only made one free throw all night, but the girl made the first one to tie up the game. Thank goodness she missed the second one and we were headed to overtime!! All of this to say Heritage ended up losing by 1 point in overtime. Seconds after the final buzzer went off the tears started flowing. Our girls were absolutely heartbroken and it was heartbreaking for me to watch. I stayed until they came out of the locker room so I could talk to some of them. I told them how amazing the game was and I was SO incredibly proud of them!! I have three of the girls in 5th period, so tomorrow I'm gonna make a huge deal about it and let everyone know how awesome it was!! I ended up not leaving the school until 10:30, which made my Friday a 13 1/2 hour day, but it was definitely worth it!

Also on Friday, I was grading the warm-ups from the week and found a lovely poem/rap on the back of one of them. I saw the girl in the hallway later that day and told her on Monday I was gonna have someone throw down a beat and she had to do it for the class!! Since then I've gotten the idea to videotape it and show it on the first day of school next year!!! ha so stay tuned for the video, but for now I'll leave you with the sick lyrics:
I'm sittin in math
learnin my fractions
with Briana in here
it's a big distraction

She's makin weird noises
and sayin weird things
 She's drivin me crazy
  with the weird songs she sings

Tryin to listen to my teacher up there,
but when she asks me a question
I'm like, "who what where?"

I know I'm really smart
I have an 85
I'm in love with math,
we're like Bonnie and Clyde!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Teaching is Personal

You never realize how close you get to your students, until something happens to one of them. Wednesday was our first day back with students for the new semester. My day was rolling along; they were pretty crazy, but I was dealing with it. My 6th period class is a special one. There are only 8 students in that class, so we get a lot accomplished in little time and that means lots of extra time to play games!! (Math games, of course!) So right before 6th period I received an email from one of the boys' mom in the class. He is the most precious little boy with the cutest curly hair. The email said he was in a bike accident on Monday  night and was rushed into immediate surgery. One of his best friends is also in my 6th period class and he said that they were riding their bikes on Monday when Matt tried to jump a curb. He didn't make it which caused the handlebars to smash into his stomach as he flipped over his bike. He ended up rupturing his intestines. His mom said he was on a ventilator during the surgery and as of Thursday still had a nasal tube in his nose. Several of my students went to visit him Wednesday night and brought me a picture of them by Matt in his hospital bed. It made me so sad to see his little body and he was trying to smile! I wanted to immediately go up to the hospital and see him. So during study hall on Wednesday, I had some of my girls make a card for him and let them go around and have students sign it. After school I took it around to all his teachers and had them all sign it! I emailed his mom back and let her know that I would keep him in my prayers for the rest of the week. She let me know that they were starting to let him eat ice chips, but would not release him from the hospital until he could walk under his own power.We're not sure when he'll be able to return to school, but I will be excited when he does! So whenever you have some spare time this week please keep Matt in your prayers! That his body would heal quickly and he can regain all of his strength back!! 

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Off Facebook, onto Blogging!

I really enjoy making a new years resolution every year. The past couple years I have picked out specific Bible verses that I want that entire year to revolve around. This year I decided to change it up a bit. My new years resolution is to get off facebook for a year and spend my time doing better things! That being said, I can't believe it's January 15th and I haven't blogged an update yet!! 

I am so happy to have Monday off and then a teacher work day! Then Friday, I am using one of my new hire days to go see some other 7th grade accelerated teachers around the district. I am excited because I'll also be planning with one of the teachers from our sister middle school. The end of the semester went very well! The teacher I will be planning with made a 7th grade accelerated semester exam for all the accelerated students to take. This way we can compare with each other since we do not really have a way of seeing how we're doing with other students in our own school. My 1st period class average was: 96.2!!! Now they only have 12 students in their class, but still!! Really, that's the greatest argument that smaller classes really are better. My 2nd period (of 28) class average was: 91.4! We also completed our percent projects and they look magnificent.The students had to write their own survey question and then survey 40 people. We had a big discussion that you do not want to have a boring "what is your favorite color" question, so they are all really creative! We then created a circle graph on paper and those are displayed outside my room in the hall and then the last step of the project was to create a computer circle graph. We spent a day in the computer lab doing this and it was awesome! If you click here, you can have a look at them! They worked hard and I think it shows!!

I have also completed my first boot camp with Jay Johnson! I loved it..... well, I loved the results of it! ha so much that I signed up for the 2nd one and start on Monday!! ha I lost a pound a half (which I wasn't expecting) and have gained a whole lot of muscle. I feel stronger and it is awesome!!

I'm gonna leave y'all with a whole hodge-podge of pictures from over the break! So enjoy!!

A view from our connecting flight in Denver to Dallas! Snow!!


                                                                                                               A huge present!! The next picture is what was in the bag!!     


One of my presents from my roomie!!! 
 I love my Baylor footies!!

My cruel joke before break... I told them they had 32 pages of bookwork over Christmas break!! It was hilarious!!

 I never let students write on my board, so the day before break I did and they were so sweet!! (minus the one message that said "you will be my wife" that I had to erase!!!)

My wonderful mentor Kellie got me a cute hammer for my classroom!!