Binion E-Meeting

February 8th, 2016

Leaving Your Legacy

So I’ve been thinking a whole lot lately and into this school year about how people will remember me. I recently had my 40th birthday and while I am still considered young in most eyes, it brought back memories of my first few years of teaching.

I remember distinctly a conversation I had with one of the veteran bilingual teachers during my second year (still in my early 20's) where I was lamenting how old the students made me feel. I made some pop culture reference and it was met with absolute silence. Most of then weren't in the US or didn't have a TV whenever the TV show aired. It hit me hard. She told me that I wasn’t old until I was 30. Well, that number came and went. Ha!

I also remember a conversation I had with my mentor teacher summer before I started teaching. She told me that she didn’t even begin to feel like she had a clue how to teach until she started her 8th year. I heard that and went on my merry way thinking I had a clue.

Then my first year came and crashed into a brick wall. Yet it was still August. I had a bridged class of 2nd and 3rd graders. 2nd graders were all English speaking Caucasian using the Open Court Curriculum and my third graders were Hispanic bilingual using the Scott Foresman curriculum. I continued holding my foot on the gas and driving into the metaphorical wall for the next year and a half until I was suddenly struck with a “new revelation” that I didn’t really have much of a clue. So I spent the remainder of the year asking questions like crazy from anyone and everyone I could possibly think of to ask questions to.

As I look back on where I came from, I feel sorry for the students I taught my first year. I have found some of them on Facebook, or they've contacted me throughout the years, and ya know what? Even despite how bad I was, they still generally seem to have good memories from their elementary teacher They forgive my ineptitude and understand that I was just learning and trying to do the best I could.

This past weekend, I rode my bike through Fort Worth and ran into a former teacher that taught at the same school I did. She said that one of my mentors had talked with her recently about me. I came up in conversation because she's part of a bike club that I follow on FB. She talked about how passionate and dedicated I was. It’s amazing and humbling to hear this kind of stuff! Specially when I thought I did everything all wrong and backwards.

So why do I share all of this with you? It’s not to shine my own apple or make you think I’m all that great. I think more than anything, it’s to give you hope. No matter how good you are (or how good you think you are), you can get better. No matter how bad you are, kids are resilient and they will probably forgive you as long as you are trying to get better. If you would have asked me five years ago about what kind of legacy I would leave, the picture would have been quite bleak. Now, it seems much brighter. And the brightest days are yet to come!

Shout Outs!

Shout out to Binion Staff for making our great counselors feel extra special this week!

Shout out to 1st grade for collecting 100 canned goods to donate for the 100th day of school!

Shout out to teachers and interventionist on a smooth MOY RTI meetings! Remember our first time to have RTI meetings?? RT...What? Ha Ha! Great teamwork and collaboration!

Upcoming Events

Monday February 8th Green 5- Staff Meeting -Tech Training and Telpas

Tuesday February 9th Blue 1-College shirt day, District spelling bee, 4th grade opera, PTA meeting slating executive board and Kinder program

Wednesday February10th Purple 2- LOL meeting after school, Assessment council (Hager)

Thursday February 11th Red 3-Bea Luchin observations

Friday-February 12th Orange 4-Valentines Day parties, Winter Math Bee

Number Talks Soon our campus will be receiving the book, Number Talks for teacher resource section. It has a DVD with videos that model how to build number sense with students. It will be coming to your library soon.

Have a wonderful week!

Brittany's Corner

Hilda's post got me thinking about my students in my first class. Ouch, I feel so bad for them. I'm sure I will look back on my first year as AP and feel great sympathy for y'all as I did for my students. :-) However, it's times like these that really make me reflect on how I've grown and how I can continue to grow. As Jeff says, we are still "becoming." He's so right. Thanks for the reflective moment, Hilda.

Errors on CBAs
  • There is a new protocol for reporting errors/mistakes on CBAs - most of you already do this:
  1. When you find a mistake on a CBA, email me with the incorrect item and what you feel the correction should be.
  2. I will pass the information onto Dr. Uphoff.
  3. She will let me know when/if the issue gets resolved.
  4. I will then contact you when I get an answer.

So, basically, email me when you find an error on the CBA, not Monica. :-)

STAAR A and STAAR L online tutorials

  • 3rd-5th and Specialists - I emailed you the link to access the online tutorials for your students taking the STAAR A or STAAR L test to practice. The tutorial is MANDATORY for all students taking these tests.
  • The student should practice the tutorial at least 3 times, one of those times being the week before the actual test.
  • I HIGHLY recommend all teachers take some time to explore the online tutorials. When it comes time to make a decision as to which test a student should take, it can be a scary feeling to choose a test you know little about. Experiment with the tutorial and you will have better knowledge to make those important decisions in the future.
  • PK-2 teachers, let me know if you want the link to download the tutorials (just in case your curious to check it out).

Jeff's Corner

Hilda's comments on "Legacy" resonate with me, and hopefully with all of us. Our journeys as humans and educators are full of twists and turns; trial and error; success and failure--- and ultimately, growth. One thing we do all know is that regardless of age or experience, we are still becoming... still learning. ( As someone who is so often reminded of that age thing by colleagues, I know it's true!!) But thanks, Hilda, for that sharing.

I also wish to praise Hilda (for once!) in her use of idioms... If you can respond correctly to the idiom to which I refer in her "Legacy" section, I will have a can of soda (Dr. Pepper or Coke) for you! (For multiple correct guesses, this will also be in a drawing)

Getting to Know You Mystery Person of the Week

* Born, raised, and public schooled in Tarrant County
* During her childhood, if you went to visit her, you might have heard "Oink! Oink!" or "MOO-OO-O!"
* Favorite Movies... include Little Mermaid, Pitch Perfect and The Notebook
* Favorite Vacation Trip: Skiing in Crested Butte, Colorado
* Bucket list vacation trip... Ireland
* Embarrassing moment... "...walking onto the basketball court to cheer in my high school pep rally with TOILET PAPER on my shoe!"
* Favorite Foods: Chicken and dumplings; Cheeseburgers with extra pickles
* Person to have private dinner with... "Lucille Ball"
* What you like most about your team..."I love that we are so cohesive and willing to hold each other accountable."
* What you like most about Binion... "how the staff is accepting and willing to help one another out"
* Memorable comment from a child: "Are you pregnant or did you eat too many donuts?!"
* Something others might find interesting... "I was a state champion all around gymnast."

Email me your guess by noon tomorrow. The winning guesses will go in the drawing for a jeans pass!!
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