Wednesday, December 31, 2008


So it seems that everyone is making a New Year resolution so I suppose I will post mine as well. I only have one and it's a small one, but I feel it is important none the less.

Drum roll please....

My New Year's resolution for 2009 is to stop worrying about other people and care more about myself. There...I said it. I realize that this may sound selfish but I have very good reasons for this resolution and I really thought long and hard about it. (Honest, I did!)

1. For most of my life I have made decisions based on how they will affect other people. I am so concerned about how these decisions will affect people that I have made poor decisions for myself because someone else benefited from it.

2. I often compare myself to others. I'm sure if any of you do this, you've come to realize that it puts a real damper on your mood. From now on I'm only going to compare myself to me.

3. I have also been known to screw myself over by getting in the middle of arguments between friends. I often feel the need to choose a side and defend the friend who got screwed over. I've done this too many times only to realize that the friend who got screwed over deserved it.

So there it resolution to be selfish. Happy New Year Everyone!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Elffy Business

Send your own ElfYourself eCards
My friend made this for Christmas. I think we watched it about 15 times before we could finally breathe. There were rumors of some funny business going on with me and Santa, but none of it's true. Anyway, the video's pretty least we thought so.

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Whoever Said 'Let it Snow' was on Crack

So yesterday after school was my last day with the kids and I realized how much I'm going to miss them over the break. I broke the news to them gently and they had several concerns...

Kenny: But Ms. Skelly, I left your card and candy at home.
Adam: Will we see you in first grade?
Kenny: Ms. Skelly, how can I get your card and candy to you?
Eddie: Does Santa know where you're going??? You better make sure he knows before you leave.
Kenny: I need your address and phone number so I can send you your card and candy.

Shortly after they all go home, Vodka Mom turns to me and says, "you should really leave tonight, otherwise you'll be stuck until Saturday." Of course I don't listen. "I'll be fine!", I think to myself. I've driven in much worse. So I wake up this morning and look out the window only to find that everything is white. Just white. On my way up the road to fill the tank I spin out and almost land in a ditch (which would have been better than being hit by the truck that was following me).

It's really kind of amazing how many things went wrong this week. One of my best friends is no longer an intern and is going to have to wait another semester to graduate, my last blog caught the attention of my fellow interns like wildfire and was blown way out of proportion, I miss my kids already (and we had a little bit of a rough day yesterday), my final assignment did not get submitted the way it should have been and I don't know how to show that I REALLY did do it on time, and my dreadful science lessons were lost 4 times.

To top it all off Rome is supposed to come back tonight and I miss the Hell out of him. He flew from Rome to Munich and is anticipated to land in JFK at about 8. I think he's in the air right now...not really sure. Since I don't have a phone anymore (due to an untimely hot tub drowning) I can't call anyone to get the flight info.

Life could be worse, though. It's a possibility that he's going to be stuck in Germany tonight. At least I'm in the good old US of A.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

This is the real world, Kid. No job for you!

For lack of funny kindergarten and mom stories, I'm sharing a blog I wrote in class today about fair assessment. Take it as you's just what I think.

My fellow interns and I have found ourselves in a heated discussion about good and fair assessments. What is a good assessment? How does a teacher make sure that the assessment is fair to all students? It seems to me that the best way to make sure that all student assessments are fair is to create a rubric ahead of time. This way it can be shared with students and they are already aware of what exactly is expected of them. This is the easy part.

The more difficult part comes when it is time for the teacher to evaluate the assignment. It is no secret that everyone has different strengths and weaknesses when it comes to learning and it is no different when it comes to children. There is such a great pressure that comes with the letter grading scale because at some point, someone decided that was the easiest way to assess a learner. However, if I have learned anything in my experience as a student teacher it's that the easiest way is certainly not always the best. It takes effort from both the teacher and students to really see how well a student can perform and how much he or she can achieve.

A classmate of mine brought up the point that when a child grows up and gets into the real world, an employer is not necessarily looking for who is trying the hardest. They're looking for who is producing the best work at the fastest rate and for the most part, that's true. In my personal opinion I don't see how it relates to teaching children. Yes, children become adults and they should be prepared for what they can expect in the real world, but at what point are we forgetting that right now they're still children? Is it fair for us, as teachers, to put that pressure on them at such a young age? Personally, I agree that it is the responsibility of the teacher to prepare students for life, however it is also our responsibility to preserve their childhood. They only get one. What gives us the right to take that away from them with the pressures of performance?

It is important to keep in mind that our students are often harsher on themselves than we are. Since this is the case, shouldn't students have at least some involvement in their own evaluation? I believe that even the Kindergarteners I work with are capable of telling me whether or not they did their best work. Students need individualized goals so that everyone is challanged. They need to understand where they are so that they can work to get to where they can be. If I have twenty students with twenty individual goals and all twenty of them reach that goal, then I don't see any reason why I shouldn't have twenty "A's". What it comes down to is the fact that in order to have a fair assessment or evaluation, you need to know your students.