Tuesday, August 30, 2016

First Day of School

The day is finally here!  FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL!

I woke up so optimistic, despite the two Tylenol PMs not working and tossing and turning all night.  *sigh*  Hubs made me a great breakfast, dogs snuggled me so good, I thought it was going to be such a great day.

Hello gorgeous, let's make it a great day!
I was driving along to work, enjoying the beautiful sun.  I stopped at a beach/park to look at how beautiful it was, and take a few deep breaths and send some positive thoughts out into the universe.  Just some thoughts of how spectacular this year would be, how I would work extra hard to do the best I could all year, and how great everything would be.  

Then I got to school.

And I forgot my lunch that I so carefully packed last night.  Not only did I forget my lunch, but also al my snacks and my water bottle. To make matters worse, I also have roughly $0.39 left from my summer of fun and we don't get paid until next week, so yeah...I'm pilfering from the snack box in the office for my lunch. 

It was so much fun to go out to the playground and welcome all the students and parents back to school.  I helped a few lost kiddos find their teachers and then the fun began.

I can summarize my morning in two words: Tech Support!  I was running around like a chicken with its head cut off trying to troubleshoot everyone's computers and/or SmartBoard issues!  At 8:30 am I spoke with our district IT coordinator about creating a central district site to house all of the elementary math documents.  I didn't get the outcome I wanted, but I can live with what I've got for now.  At 9, I had to run over to the tech center located in our High School to pick up some hardware for our new teachers and principal.

Math Coach's Heaven
Then I finally got to unpack all my boxes of math manipulatives that I ordered in June!  Holy christmas morning batman!  Being the supreme math nerd that I am, this of course was the most thrilling moment for me.  I mean, just look at all these goodies ready for distribution!!

I spent some time walking around the building, going in and out of some classrooms and saying hi to the kids.  Then at 11, I finally had a moment of down time, so I started to work on my PD presentation for next Thursday.  I somehow have to fit an entire graduate course's information/work into a 30 minute presentation.  This should be fun! 
Have you ever seen anything
so cool as this?

I was hanging around in the office going over my purchase order with our secretary (because like a bozo, I ordered too much of one thing and not enough of another, but it was my fault...boo) and in walks a parent with the most amazing school supply "cake"!  It was for one of the 5th grade teachers.  I was in total shock at the creativeness of it.  

After a very filling lunch of an old ramen noodles that I found in my closet, I then discovered that the massive central website that housed every single important document pertaining to math for every grade K-5, and every unit within those grades was transferred to a new server and I lost access and most of the links didn't work.  Now, this project took me about 30-40 hours of work this summer, so to say I was frustrated was an understatement.  Luckily we have an amazing IT Dept. and within a few hours all was fixed and reinstated.  
2nd Grade Number Talk on Day 1
I spent the end of my day in a second grade classroom watching a Number Talk.  They were given a pretty basic doubles string to use and they did great!  They had some very unique strategies and all were eager to share their ways.  I'm so thrilled to see the Number Talks happening on day 1 and think it sets a really great tone for the rest of the school year.  I also introduced the teachers to the "With Math I Can" movement, and saw the pledge on a chart in her room.  She told me she plans on having the kids take the pledge, sign the sheet and keep that posted all year.  I LOVE to hear stuff like that!

Around 3, my brain was throbbing and I was starting to crash, so I left.  Came home to snuggle the boys and then promptly fell asleep.  Woke up a bit later, read and responded to some emails, and then did some more work on the central Math site that I'm working on.  One of the emails was from the Asst. Supt. asking me to do a "how to" sheet that I can share with the other coaches and staff.  Since I'm meeting the other coaches at 9am tomorrow, I knew I needed to get it done.

At 5:30 I put my work to the side and headed out to book club!  I have the best book club in the world, by the way.  We meet on the last Tuesday of every month and we always have a great time together.  This month's book was a real clunker, but the company of my girlfriends more than made up for it!  Plus, one of the girls is getting married next month, so we had a mini-shower for her.  It's great to get together with my girls once a month.  

It's 10pm, I just walked in the door and I have a colleague in a panic about something they may have lost in google docs.  I need to help her find her stuff, but I'm also dying to go to bed.  At what point should I just give up and try again tomorrow?  I'm thinking now is that time....night, night.  

Reflection Questions

1) Teachers make a lot of decisions throughout the day.  Sometimes we make so many it feels overwhelming.  When you think about today, what is a decision/teacher move you made that you are proud of?  What is one you are worried wasn’t ideal?

A teacher move I made today that I'm proud of was that I decided to be  a present face for the kids and parents when the day was first starting.  I think that set a good tone for the upcoming school year.  Plus, selfishly, I got so many hugs from students and that made me feel so great to be back.  I do wish that I had popped into more classrooms, but I felt so weird doing that on the first day.  

2) Every person’s life is full of highs and lows.  Share with us some of what that is like for a teacher.  What are you looking forward to?  What has been a challenge for you lately?

My biggest challenge right now is rolling out all this district curriculum work that I did, not only to the other math coaches in the district, but all the teachers as well.  I'm also nervous about this half hour PD that I have to give next week.  Not nervous for actually presenting, just nervous I won't be able to fit it all in in a half hour time slot!

3) We are reminded constantly of how relational teaching is.  As teachers we work to build relationships with our coworkers and students.  Describe a relational moment you had with someone recently.

Spending the end of my day in the 2nd grade classroom was awesome!  I got to chit chat with that teacher for a bit, and she asked my feedback afterwards.  She did so great, so it was a nice time to just remind her how awesome she is and give suggestions on where she should go next! 

4) Teachers are always working on improving, and often have specific goals for things to work on throughout a year. What have you been doing to work toward your goal?  How do you feel you are doing?

I feel silly answering these because I just answered the same set yesterday, but I'm still blogging, I'm sharing my blog with others, I'm building better teacher-coach relationships and I'm seeing some great Number Talks which are going to help with my number sense improvement goal.  Granted, it's only day 1, so let's see what happens next.  

5) What else happened this month that you would like to share?

Nah, I'm done sharing. ha! Just kidding, nothing else has happened since yesterday.

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