Thursday, October 13, 2011

Feather Boas and Tiaras

You thought I was kidding, didn't you?  Come honest...

Nope.  Not this time.  I did indeed start off my day with a feather boa and a tiara.  Suzy has borrowed them for the evening.  She's just that kind of cow.  Why, you ask did I start off my day with a feather boa and a tiara?

Remember that grant project I worked on for a couple of years?  The one to get the iPod Touches for our school?  Last year we got our iPods, and we spent the year learning how to use them in the class, teaching others how to do so and in general just creating new ways to use technology with our kiddos.  All of this was done with the money and support from the K20 Center at OU.  Well, it turns out (and this was a complete surprise to me) that they also have an award to "[celebrate] educators who have demonstrated the ability to link student learning with the innovative use of technology and the K20 IDEALS."  They call it the SKIE award (Supporting K20 Innovative Educators).  This morning, the people from K20 came to our school to present my friend and co-worker, Regina Hartley, and myself with said award!  Yay us!

My Principal knew about this yesterday, I guess, so she called an assembly this morning and they did the presentation at the assembly.  She also gifted us with said feather boas and tiaras. 

Of course, I am pleased with the award, but I think my favorite part of it all was listening to some of the comments that came my way throughout the day.  Sara Snodgrass from K20 said she uses our model to teach everyone else what to do with this kind of technology in the classroom.  My students from both this year and last year told me that they knew when they started talking about an award for technology that I was going to win it because I taught them so much about it and with it.  Another person told me that she would love to be in my class because whenever she looks into my room, they are always doing something neat.  I was even told that it was interesting to look into my room because they could never find me when they did.  I was always in the middle of the students.

We had fun with the whole thing - all of my students tried on my boa.  :D  At the presentation, the people from K20 said that the award comes with a check (no idea how much of a check, just a check).  I guess my kids didn't quite understand what was said because they asked why they were giving me a chicken.  

I know that there are a ton of responsibilities that come with the award.  I will be presenting at the K20 Conference next year.  This year too, but that will be with our grant team, I think.  I'll be meeting the board of the K20 Center and others involved with the program.  All in all, a good platform to talk to others about the problems we have been having in education.  I am excited to see what this opportunity brings.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

I can do it!

Just for those of you who doubt - I can organize!  Really!  Today, it was this:

 You can see that the gnomes have been hard at work.  You can't even see the 4 globes over to the left hand side.  Those were one of the first things to go.  Can you spot the problem with them? 
I last saw one of these in 6th grade!               

My co-workers and I spent almost two hours after school getting rid of a bunch of this stuff.  Yes, I know...we teachers are only supposed to work 4 hours a day.  However, sometimes we just get desperate. 

After Veronica and I tried to actually get something out of this closet, we decided that we (plus Carol) would be janitorial staff this evening.  We filled an entire dumpster.   Yes, starting with a completely empty one. 
Yup.  Records, slides & monster computers to play them.

We don't even have the equipment to use some of these things anymore!    Can you imagine if we tried to get the kids to use one of those monster computers?!  I even threw out some software that was on 5 1/4" disks.  I'm not sure you can find anything to read those anymore!

In addition to the dumpster full, we had quite a collection of old electronics.  We didn't throw that stuff away though - just turned it over to the office so they could send it to the warehouse.  But someone else can clean out the warehouse!

Doesn't it look better!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Another busy Saturday

Whew!  What a busy day!  I started early, early with a trip to the closest Weight Watchers to weigh in for the Dr. Oz Transformation Nation challenge.  We'll see how it goes, but I have two steps left to qualify for the contest in April - see my Dr. and lose 10% of my body weight.  Both are very doable, and to win a chance for a  million dollars?  Why not? 

As for my plan (remember, I did say I'd have one by Saturday) - I've decided to start with the Reboot, with elements of Whole 30.  If I tried to explain all of that here, it would make this blog post way too long!  Practically, what it means is that (for now) I won't be eating meat, dairy, soy or sugar (including honey, agave, artificial, etc.).  I also won't be adding salt to my meals - just herbs.

Following that quick stop, Bella and I headed down to the Czech Festival in Yukon.  It was a beautiful day!   We met this guy first thing when we got there.  He was looking at us a little suspiciously, but his owner says he was just preparing himself for his job.  He was just getting ready to go give little kids rides in a coral.  I'm sure that takes lots of mental preparation.  As we passed by him and his friends, we noticed that they smelled oddly like Pledge.  I asked the gentleman, and he says it is fly spray....I don't know - they were shiny and everything.

 We spent the whole morning wandering around outside, and we stayed for a bit of the parade and some of the music before we were off on our next adventure. 

We wanted to stop at the Railroad Museum, but it was closed.  Maybe next time.

After we left the Czech Festival, we were on our way to the Asian market when I realized we were passing right by the Oklahoma City Farmer's Market - and it was still open!  So, we made a quick stop there for some locally grown fresh veggies.   Yum! 

Then we continued on our way to the Asian Market for more fresh veggies.  Bella was very valuable with her knowledge of different types of leafy vegetables.
And I forgot to put in the Green Papaya
 I would have take a picture, but this time I actually read the sign on the front door that said "no cameras."  :(  Although, I have to admit, I did sneak some pictures of the signs on the display so that I could remember what I was eating.  I got a ton of fresh vegetables for under $20!

We left the Asian market to head back to Norman, and wouldn't you know it - there was Spiritfest right there in front of us at the Westminster Presbyterian Church.  There were dancers and booths and a car show going on.  Of course we had to stop.  We had plenty of time for another adventure, especially since the game was a night game, so traffic wouldn't be bad for hours yet.

Bella enjoyed the car show!

They just danced around the little girl.

One more quick stop at Sam's for some fruit and we were on our way back home - well before game traffic!  Although, Sam's was packed!  I know better than to shop on a home game day, but my refrigerator needed to be filled and I didn't want to make a special trip on Sunday.  Boring housework followed, but then I ended my day surrounded by TVs and Sooner fans watching the game and having one last burger before my meatless time begins Sunday.

Boomer!  Sooner!!!