Teacher Week 2013: Meet the Teacher Monday!

Ok, ok, so this isn’t a teaching blog….but I am a teacher (and a lot of you reading are teachers), and I follow a lot of teacher blogs. I keep saying I’m going to write more teaching posts, and then I never get around to it. But maybe getting aboard the Blog Hoppin’ train will spark a little something 🙂

Today’s theme: meet the teacher


1. I’m about to start my 3rd year in 4th grade. I graduated with my Masters in Teaching from Whitworth University in 2010, and was hired as a middle school librarian for the following school year. After one year the library I was laid off and recalled to fourth grade. It was a big change, but a great one! Last year I was on maternity leave for 4.5 months and returned to teach only in the mornings (math, science & social studies). This year one of my kinder buddies, aka my sister wife, is joining me to teach ELA in the afternoon. We’re crazy busy right now trying to sort through two classrooms worth of bins, labels, art supplies, etc. Hopefully we get it all organized soon!


2. I have been married for nearly 5 years to Tim, aka the hubs. We met at an auction when my husband was in law school. We moved to San Diego (where the hubs is from) right after he graduated, lasted 9 months, and promptly moved back. We were married on Gonzaga’s campus (where I went to undergrand and he went to law school), and had our reception at Arbor Crest Winery.


3. I have an almost 1 year old, Genevieve. She’s pretty much the cutest thing ever. Recently she’s been sharing her food with the dog, clapping when she likes something, and giving kisses. Today she kissed her first boy at library story time. I’m a little worried about her assertiveness 😉


4. I just turned 30. I don’t feel like I’m 30, but then I read things like this and realize that, yeah, I’m totally 30. Yeah, I totally side with the parents on teen dramas these days. No comment about me still watching teen dramas…


5. I’m a runner, or at least I like to pretend I am. I ran my first half marathon 2 summers ago, but was sidelined with a bad IT band tear. After it healed I was knocked down with morning sickness, and resigned myself to walking until just recently. Yesterday I decided to train for my first 10K in October. Wish me luck!

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6. I love to cook. I haven’t been as creative as I’d like, but I’m slowly getting my grove back. I’ve been pretty lazy this summer, and now that Genevieve is eating solids, I try to at least be healthier in my laziness. I’m working on my next freezer meal plan. I’m on the hunt for some great ground beef recipes, because I have about 10 pounds from a local organic rancher that I’d like to use for more than just burgers and taco meat.

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7. If I could figure out a way to dress up my yoga pants in a work appropriate way I’d be the happiest teacher in the world. And not the new, not super comfortable, but your butt looks amazing in yoga pants. I mean my old, faded, super stretchy yoga pants.

8. I have one dog, Rilo (named after Rilo Kiley), and one cat, Rikka (short for Paprika, don’t ask me about the misspelling…she may or may not have been named after a bottle or two of wine). Rilo is very sweet, and great with Genevieve. Rikka is a brat, but we love her anyway.

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9. I love to read, but haven’t read as much as I’d like to since my daughter was born. I’m trying to be better about that. I recently finished My Name is Memory, by Ann Brashares, and picked up Call the Midwife, by Jennifer Worth from the library to start next. I also have the CUTEST lending library across the street from my house. My daughter and I like to pick up books for ourselves, and I often see my students borrowing books too 🙂

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10. I’m a wannabe crafter. The hubs got me an amazing sewing machine for Christmas a few years ago, and my mother-in-law has been helping me with projects here and there. She helped me sew Genevieve’s crib bedding, and I have a few more projects on the horizon. Their all being held hostage on my pinterest board waiting to be unleashed. So far I’ve managed to replace G’s pinwheels with bunting flags. I want to make some for my classroom too…if I have time!

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Your turn – tell me one fun fact I don’t know about you!

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Today my class celebrated during the last hour of the day with a pizza party (courtesy of some awesome parents), passing out valentines and decorating our nice note books.

My dear friend, Amy, subs for me from time to time. She organized a secret folder of nice notes for me to find today. The kids were very sweet, and had such nice things to say. I truly felt loved 🙂 My favorite note was by far this one:

You are bom plese do not corret my mistacks on this paper. 🙂


? (with the name erased)


Being a teacher is the best job ever!


Did you do anything to celebrate today?

Teacher’s corner: Valentine’s Day

I don’t know about you, but the thought of class parties makes me want to curl up under the covers and call a sub. The sugar, the chaos, the sugar, the way it throws off the rest of the day, the sugar, the noise, and did I mention the sugar?


So instead of a big blow out on Valentine’s Day, I’m going for subtly sweet. When I was a student teacher my class had the most amazing parent volunteers. Our parties were low key and casual thanks to the calming spirit of one mother. For Valentine’s Day she had the brilliant idea of creating a book of nice notes for each student.

Each day, in the month leading up to Valentine’s Day, we select a student (or two) of the day. The rest of the class volunteers nice comments about the student of the day, and we write them down on chart paper. Then the student of the day calls on 3-4 students to ask questions, usually about favorites. After gathering our nice thoughts, the kiddos go back to their desks and write nice notes on half sheets of white paper (with two hole punches), and can decorate them if time allows. The person of the day creates a folder to house the notes, which they don’t get to read until Valentine’s Day.

On Valentine’s Day we bust out the folders and the students can create and decorate books out of construction paper, a class picture, decorative wire, stickers, etc. If your class needs a little community boost, or participates in “filling buckets,” this activity might be a great substitute* for your typical class party.

*I guess I still get a sub this way 😉

Whenever I’m having a tough day, I pull my book out for a little pick me up. Hopefully my kiddos enjoy their books as much as I enjoy mine!

I love this: “I love your outfits”

Do you do anything special for class parties?