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Where has the time gone! Last week was a full week of teaching and there were a few nights I was ready to go to bed by 6pm. I would have gone to bed if I thought I could have slept through the night. I might try it next time.

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I love the scenery on my drive but I dislike slow traffic.

For student teaching I have now taken over planning and teaching for kindergarten, second grade, fourth grade and fifth grade. Sixth graders are finishing up their composer projects so that is still a joint teaching effort.

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The no whining sign is my favorite :)

Second grade we have been working on pitch matching and reading music with a technology twist. Instead of having them read music the first time they learn a song, I created a power point slide with images that spin when clicked to help the students track the music better. They loved it! When I came home, I asked V to help me create some new words to the melodies. We now have a page full of new words to go with the two melodies. So much fun! I even taught the kindergarten class a couple of the songs with the images and they loved it! It is amazing how a little technology can help the student engage and focus.

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Part of the classroom

In fourth grade we are working on their concert songs and I am realizing I need to dust off my Spanish pronunciation a little bit :) I love the songs and it is starting to come together since we added a few motions. Fifth grade I pretested on their improvisation ability and now need to map out my teaching unit. Somehow I am going to combine jazz, improvisation and spirituals into one cohesive unit. I am excited to see what I come up with ^_^

One of the biggest things I am learning right now is how to pre-teach expected behaviors and to stop and have students redo something when it is not done as expected. For several classes, clearly saying what I expect of them has helped greatly. For others, they hate having to redo something or hear me repeat instructions so once I remind them a few times their behavior is better.

Did you know that just standing closer to a student does not always alter their behavior? Apparently even with a teacher standing, looking right at them, they will still talk to their neighbor when they are supposed to be singing, listening, etc.! Oh well, sometimes it works, sometimes they just don’t realize what they are doing.

I have also taken over working with the third graders. They are currently learning recorders. I need to work on my time management skills for third grade since they are working in small groups instead of one large class. I find it is hard to move onto another student when I know the one I am with is still not getting it. My goal this week is to create some small groups of students in each recorder class that I can work with and try to help them out so they can catch up with the rest of the class. I think some group playing will be in order latter in the week as well. I hope they are ready :)

DSC01979Look at all those books!

DSC01983Friday night was a wonderful lazy night. There were things I could have done but it felt good to let myself vegetate for a while. Saturday was a mixture of being productive and lazy. I almost got caught up writing formal lesson plans (instead of sticky note lesson plans) and spent some time with my family and reading blogs.

Sunday morning I made a delicious bowl of Apple Pie Oatmeal. I didn’t have apple sauce and guessed on the spices (because I didn’t want to measure them) but it turned out wonderfully. It was a nice switch form overnight oats or my usually whipped banana oatmeal I make on the weekends.

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Sunday mornings sermon was on prayer and pastor MacDonald and the church elders called the church to a week of prayer. Sunday evening M and I attended a prayer service that helped focus us and get us ready for the week. I have only been apart of the church for a few weeks but I already feel apart of the community. I am so glad that my brother found this church a few years ago and started attending. By the way, did you know you can listen to James MacDonalds sermons online?

A heavy snow storm is in the forecast for this week and I am hopeful for a snow day. I would love a day to stay bundled up instead reading a book and not have to drive in the snow.

What is your favorite thing to do on a snow day?

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