Kristi's Korner

February 22, 2016

Quote of the Week

No matter how bad things are, you can always make things worse.

--Randy Pausch


Do any of the above pictures represent how you feel about now? February is the longest shortest month there is. It is the month that makes many of us question, "What are we doing in this profession?" "Am I crazy or is it them?" "Will it ever be spring?" All great questions. Because you were called to change the lives of kids. Neither of you are. And yes.

There are studies that track the emotions of teacher, and it is not surprising that February is one of the tougher months. School started six long months ago. We have all been trapped inside for days upon days at home and school. And our bag of tricks are running low. What that looks like is referrals shoot way up. You hear lots more raised voices in the hallways. And see looks of exhaustion at the end of each day.

There are some things that might get you through these dark days. First, know that you are not alone. There is comfort in knowing there are others out there. That is the basis for support groups. Lean on each other. Lean on your friends. (And I am getting ready to break out in song.) Lean on me.

Another idea is to focus on the positive. It is easy to get bogged down with those two or three students who are struggling and forget the great changes you have made and all of the learning you have been instrumental in making happen. Oprah has talked about the importance of a gratitude journal for years. Purposefully take the time to reflect on the good things going on in your classroom each day. If you don't, before long you will be one of the basement dwellers.

Yet another idea, which also links to last week's Kristi's Korner, is change something up. It's been six months. How similar does your room look compared to August? Maybe just moving some furniture around. Add a new routine in. It doesn't need to be grandiose. Sometimes we all just need a new perspective.

And one more idea for the classroom....add a new behavior incentive. It could be individual like anyone who doesn't clip down all week gets a bonus certificate. There are lots of things they would love that would cost no money. It could be something as slip off your shoes in the classroom, bring a fluffy friend, or a no homework pass. You could also do a group incentive like Ms. Gerald did in December. Each day the students meet a standard you have set, you pop a balloon that contains a class incentive.

Kids feel your stress. Make sure you also take care of yourself. Take a little time each day to renew whether it is meditating, watching a little tv, exercising, or maybe sipping your favorite after-work drink.

News and Notes

PLC's on Tuesday, February 23: Looking at progress monitoring data. Please make sure it is all entered.

Buddy Day on Monday, February 29: Enjoy some reading.

Celebrate Reading Day on Wednesday, March 2: Remember this is a Dr. Seuss STEAM related Buddy Day.

Staff Soup and Sandwich Luncheon on Monday, February 29: Sign-up in lounge starting on Friday. Also, can you please email me if you can loan us a panini maker, sandwich press, or any other electric gadget that could be used to make warm sandwiches?

Smile of the Week

Okay, this probably goes into the category of oversharing, but I have a few really weird fears....this made me exceedingly happy to read that I am not alone:$:blAqMt8O/