Thursday, March 13, 2014


I absolutely agree with Houston and Sokolow’s statement, “trust is the foundation on which everything else is built,” (p.129).  Trust is so important to me in my personal, professional, and life as a M.Ed. learner.    In every area of my life, I must trust myself before I can truly trust others.

In my personal life I connected with Houston and Sokolow that trust is like love because you give and receive it.  With my family, trust occurs each and everyday.  Without it, a family would crumble and be unstable.   The people I trust most in my life are my family members because they are honest and tell me how it is. 

Within my professional life, trust must be built and earned.  Although my colleagues are like family, I have known them for less time than my family.  Trust is earned through experiences and gets stronger or weaker with time depending upon these experiences.  My students know how important honesty is to me.  We discuss trust nearly everyday.  I hope to instill the importance of this virtue within them.  When trust is broken, it takes a long time to earn it back.  But it is so important to give people chances to earn this trust back.

As a M.Ed. learner trust means respecting others views and experiences. When I share an experience, I give more detail about personal experiences with those who share similar stories with me.  When someone is not open, it is difficult to share deep thoughts at the expense that I may be judged.  

Thursday, February 27, 2014


Egg-O is a fun way to practice math facts!  All you need is an egg carton and 2 buttons.  This can easily be adapted for addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Future Tech Plan

My future vision for continued integration of technolgy after I have completed the SMU program is to continue to find new ideas to use with my students.  I am lucky enough to have wonderful colleagues who are constantly sharing new apps, programs, and websites.  I also intend to share the ideas I have with them as well.  We have a bulletin board in the teacher lounge of apps that are useful as well as not appropriate for elementary children.   At staff meetings, technology ideas are always being shared.  I also have opportunities at my school to learn technology tools from TIES classes they offer.  I have an abundance of resources at my fingertips.  This can be overwhelming.  My plan as far as implementing theses wonderful ideas is to try one new tool every 2 weeks.  I have found that when I try to do too much or add too many tools at once, I do not successfully implement the tools because I am too overhelmed. I want to give each tool a fair chance at being successful.  I will be using the spreadsheet that was created through this program of technology tools to reference as I meet my technology goal. 

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Math Menu

What a fun way to give children choice!  This "menu" allows students to pick their activities; however, the activities chosen are worth dollar amounts.  Students must do $10 worth of work!  This could easily be altered for reading centers/stations as well!

Tech Tool

I have been using an alligator app called Site Words.   High Frequency words can be a struggle for some students.  When I have them read words to themselves, I never know if they are reading them correctly.  It is so difficult to find the time to pull students each day 1:1.  This apps allows me to set up folders for each student.   To model how to use this app, I sat down 1:1 and typed a word missed.  I said the word out loud to the student and then had them record their voice saying the word.  After each word was entered and voice recorded, I had my student go through their folder and read with the word with the voice recording.  Eventually I would like to have them type the word and record their voice as as assessment tool.  The students I used this app with this week were very excited to have their own voice recorded and own folder of words.  I intend to have each of my students who struggle with their HFW use this app each day for reinforcement.

Sunday, February 2, 2014


Persistence has been my motto as of late.  Over the past few weeks I have been trying to hard to stay positive and remember the life will slow down in some areas very soon.  Balancing life has been very difficult for me the past year.  I am not alone.  Everyone’s life is busy and I chose to create this busy life for myself.  When I reflect upon persistence, it reminds me that I can do anything I set my mind to.  Life is not supposed to me easy.  Looking back at challenges in my life, they were the times I am most proud of because I did not let anything get in my way to achieve my goal.  I have never given up on anything in life.  Although I have been guilty of wanting to throw in the towel, I remind myself of all the things I have overcome in life due to my persistence.  I cannot imagine living a life that does not challenge me.  Looking at life’s challenges as opportunities has kept me moving and focused on my goals.  I have been leaning on “experts” who have been in my shoes as a well as friends/colleagues who are currently in my shoes.  I have found that surrounding myself with positive people is the best thing for me.  I do have to vent a little so I do not become overwhelmed.  It is OK to feel the way I feel and get my negative thoughts out as long as I turn my frustrations into positive opportunities.  The more I remind myself that I can do this and this feeling is temporary, I see the bright light at the end. 

Haiku Deck

I created a Haiku Deck to launch a new science unit to enhance my lesson.  I was able to incoperate different habitats I found online.  I began by posting essential questions and vocabulary words from the backward design unit I created last summer.  Each slide included a picture of a habitat and said, Name that habitat and what types of animals and plants live here?  I was unable to download videos from our curriculum to place within the slides so I used Haiku Deck as an introducion to the vocab/essential questions and then conclusion to my lesson with identifying the habitats along with the plants and animals that live there and review of the vocab/essential questions.  The actual lesson was hands on using habitat cards to sort similarities and differences as well as the National Geographic website for a habitat video.  I liked that I could easily incorporate technology into my lesson.  My students loved the pictures of the habitats and were very engaged.  I have used similar apps/programs to this in the past.  I did like how easy this site/app was to use.  I can see how this app/site could be easy and fun to use.  This may be difficult for a first grader to create on their own or even in a small group.  Creating a class Haiku Deck would be more appropriate with my class.  Perhaps at the end of our habitat unit, my students can help add information to the lesson I created for the lesson next year.  They can take ownership in being the experts and this would also be a great review of the unit.