Friday, February 25, 2011

Perfect Morning

This has been a pretty good morning so far. It's a day off for the kids so we're all at home together. These days sometimes run into gong shows and I just get angry and frustrated. Which is why I now get a job during the summer break instead of just staying at home. So, I know Tina has often told me to plan out the day to make things easier but I'm a bit of a dunce and have never done that. So this morning after being asked about xbox and playing board games I finally grabbed a pad of paper and went upstairs to talk with the kids. Together we have planned out the whole day together. This plan is posted on the wall in between their rooms. They are very excited because they know exactly what is happening when. They are now upstairs enjoying free time before xbox at 11am. The extra special thing is they are both in Griffin's room playing chess. Griffin has taught her how to play. I went in there before and they were lying on the floor on a blanket playing. It was so cute. They do have some arguments because Emi does not want her queen captured. She just popped her head out and told me they came up with a compromise. They took the queens out of the game.
they are so awesome. I love them to pieces

Thursday, February 24, 2011

A Children's Book

Wow, another post.
I can't believe how many times I've posted this week while still getting homework done.
So anyway, I've read at two schools this week for I love to read month. Well actually I read and I tell stories. I have two stories I've made up that I use along with the books I read and kids from Kindergarten up to Grade 7 (That's the seventh grade for you Americans reading) all love them. I've been thinking for a while that maybe it's time to try and get these stories published as books. The big question that comes to mind is will these stories translate to books. How much is going to depend on the illustrations. How much of the enjoyability (is that a word?) of these stories is in how I tell them. The other question is how the heck does one go about getting a children's book published. Anyway, just some thoughts. I would be cool being an author.
Would mean I'd have to wear a scarf and get a house with a studio overlooking water?

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Another Day

So I figured I could either whine and complain more about my classes or I could comment on my plans for the next 18 or so months. Let's see...(fade into dream sequence)

-Finish classes
-Do 3 days of practicum before starting Spring Break (how useless is that)
-Spend Spring Break with the kids at my mom and dads (not the whole time)
-Should maybe do lesson plans too

-Celebrate my birthday. Yay!!!!
-Practicum, Yay, A month that will actually help me be a better teacher!
-End practicum(sigh)

-Begin work for my Dad (Allow him to buy many breakfasts for me)
-ACTfest. YAY!!
-Go to PA to see my new nephew.
-Get arrested at the airport because they misunderstood when I said I have lip balm in my pocket.
-More work (more money more motivation, more motivation more money)
-plant garden
-Coach Flag Football

- More work
-More Flag Football
- watch garden grow
- watch weeds grow
- realize I have to pull weeds so garden will continue to grow
- grumble about pulling weeds.

- Go to Mennonite Church Canada Assembly (Cause I'm so Mennonite)
- Go camping (Cause I'm so Canadian)
- Pull weeds (Cause I'm so under Tina's thumb)
- Work for my Dad (Cause I'm so poor)

- Start harvesting the fruits (and vegetables) are my hard work in the garden.
- Realize I was going to start exercising this spring and now it's August.
- Work out for one week and then stop.
- Panic because I haven't registered for school yet.
- Get kicked out of the education program (I'm assuming these last two won't happen but I did forget to put them in June so I may be in trouble. They may kick me out anyway because of my last post)
- Lament the start of school

- write an apology card to my family for not being able to see them on Sundays because of the start of the NFL season.
- start getting excited to see my University buds.
-get first assignments and remember why I hate education classes.
-realize I only have 6 months of classes left and 2 months of practicum till I graduate.

- start getting ready for halloween.
- Write a blog post about how much I hate education classes.
- Hit the ditch during a freak freezing rain storm. (Could happen)

- Walk out my door and scream to the sky in frustration over the useless papers I am being forced to write for my stupid education classes.
- Celebrate American thanksgiving. (my brother lives in the U.S)
- Go to a Chiefs game and achieve World Peace (both are as likely to happen.)

-Do practicum (those high school kids won't know what hit them. But if they do I could be in big trouble)
-Get arrested for assault. (It wasn't me, it was the one-armed man)
-Get out of Jail Free. (Dang I love Monopoly)
-Buy my Christmas gifts (Literally, I ask for money so I can get what I want)
-Return gifts (I didn't like what I got for Christmas)
-Celebrate Anniversary
-Buy flowers and an apology card for Tina for forgetting to by her flowers and a card.
-Stay up till midnight with the kids.

January 2012
-Begin last semester of useless education courses
-Laugh at fifth year students panicking about trying to get a job.
- get first assignments and remember why I hate education classes.
- watch Chiefs lose in the first round of the playoffs again.

-Write a blog post about how much I hate education classes.
-Write a letter of apology to Faculty of Education and beg to not be kicked out of the faculty.
- Celebrate Valentines Day
-Buy flowers and an apology card for Tina for forgetting to by her flowers and a card.
- Do a killer job of interviews during reading week. (joy buzzer handshakes goes over really well)

- Finish useless education courses.
- Celebrate end of classes with fellow students
- Apologize to Tina for pictures of me celebrating with other students that ended up on the internet.
- Pay reputation defender company to remove pictures of me celebrating with other students that ended up on the internet.

-Celebrate Birthday. Am I really 38!?!?!?!?!
-Do practicum (Remember not to hit students)
-Finish Practicum.
-Give Valedictory Address
- Send letter of apology to university after comments made in speech made it into the globe and mail and youtube video of address goes viral

-Appear on Ellen
-Turn down offers from Garden Valley, Western and Border Land School Divisions because I'm pretty sure I'm gonna be cast on Glee.
-Get Letter saying I didn't get part in Glee because of pictures of me celebrating with other students on the internet.
- Get money back from reputation defender company
-Begin work for my Dad.

Ok so that was only 15 months but you get the picture.
You get the picture.

Thursday, February 10, 2011


I spend a lot of time in the car. On an average week I am on the road for 16-18 hours. I get bored. Lately I've been listening to podcasts and have just delved into audio books. I thought I might take a moment to fill you in on some of the podcasts I subscribe to.


1. Pardon the Interruption.

This is the best show on TSN and I never get to watch it because it is on when the kids are watching tv or we're having supper. The podcast is great because I get the entire show also because it's a podcast I don't get the visuals. These guys are smart, witty, funny and they know a thing or two about sports. Fabulous.

2. Age of Persuasion

This show only started being available on podcast in January. This is one of our favourite radio shows on CBC and is hosted by Terry O'Reilly (not the hockey player). The show is about the advertising industry, the history of it, and why certain ad campaigns have worked really well or have bombed. One of my favourite shows on radio.

3. Church Matters

This show is put out by Mennonite Church Canada. It offers a 15 minute discussion or interview about issues pertinent to the everyday life of the Mennonite Church. It helps me keep in touch with programs and projects going on in Canada and around the world.

4. Ideas

I started downloading this podcast for Tina but have started listening to it as well. I call it thinkers radio because the topics and discussions can be quite heavy. It's from the show on CBC Radio and is hosted by Paul Kennedy.

There you go. I've got sports, pop culture, church and philosophy all covered.

I'm so well balanced.


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Our Education System and the Challenges for Me

I think it has been a good week so far but I've had to do a lot of thinking lately. I did a paper on Sunday about how I've experienced schools being just or effective or how they have fallen short. For the most part I think schools are doing pretty good with the move towards inclusion and differentiated learning and the multiple intelligences. But I think we're still missing the mark, especially when it comes to the arts. Take for example the school Griffin goes to. I think it's a pretty good school and the staff I know are really good. But when I look at his timetable only 11% of his time is dedicated to the arts. Thats 5 classes in a 6 day cycle and of those 5 classes only 3 are music and his teacher does not even have training in music. There is no extracurricular arts such as choir or a school drama because he's in grade 6. Sir Ken Robinson says we have developed a hierarchy of subjects where math and the languages are given most importance followed by the humanities. If there is any time left arts and phys ed can have it. We have all these kids in our schools who are aching to express themselves but our system has said, "No, you have to sit at a desk by yourself and quietly do whatever it it we think is best for you." And so we have these incredibly talented kids who think they're dumb because they can't add fractions. That their interests aren't important to the school system so they shouldn't pursue them. I am including a link to Sir Ken Robinson's talk he gave to a group of educators. It's very powerful.
So how am I going to encourage those in my class who don't fit the school mold and are obviously artistic and kinsthetic. I guess that's the million dollar question.