Happy Valentine’s Day! Enjoy these Week 23 highlights!
1. iPad Check – With the year half over, the staff figured this was a great time to do a little housekeeping with the student iPads. The students got a refresher on how to reset their iPads, ‘clear the tray,’ and clean up any unwanted items including photographs and apps. After only 5 months with the iPads, some students had a shocking 5,000 photographs, and over 50 apps! We had them delete all but a few games, all but 50 photos, and then sanitize their iPads. A staff member checked each iPad for visible signs of damage. Finally, my favorite part, our Technology Instructional Coordinator spoke with the students in a large group about the rampant gaming problems we’ve been having. Not only are teachers annoyed with students sneakily playing games in class, but students find each other annoying and distracting as well. Our instructor showed the students a video about another school district that took away all App Store rights and completely restricted student iPad usage – all apps had to be downloaded and managed by the school. I hope the scare tactic worked. Anyway, it was pretty rewarding to delete apps off of the students’ iPads. Flappy Bird? POOF! Cookie Clicker? BYE! I maybe enjoyed that part a little too much.
2. New Kicks – So I got some new shoes that are as loud and obnoxious as I am! I kid. But seriously, these shoes are cRaZy, and the students love them. I got lots of, “Nice shoes, Mrs. D!” Anyway if you’re dying for a pair, here’s a link!
3. A Senior’s Words of Wisdom – On Monday of this week, I visited our district high school, which is luckily just across the street. School was not in session, but I enjoyed wandering around the halls and seeing all of the great artwork from my former students. I came across these quotes, shown above, and they stopped me dead in my tracks. These are quotes from my former 8th graders, now upper classmen, giving advice to younger students. They are things I try and tell my students every day, but I know they mean much more coming from someone who’s recently ‘been there.’ The quotes read:
* Many students shudder at the thought of doing even the slightest amount of thought-intensive work, and yet often view themselves as someone who is an intelligent and hard working person.
* If this educational epiphany would have arisen sooner in my high school career, the time put into my education would have been much more productive.
* You aren’t going to figure out what you want to do or what career you want to go into by sitting around and whining about how much homework you have to do or how horrible your teacher is. Take the responsibility no matter how terrifying it is.
4. My Valentine – In addition to a custom photo card, I also made my husband this lovely little book entitled “What I Love About ___ by ____” from Uncommon Goods. I surprised him by leaving it on his desk to find this morning. He is such a wonderful, caring, generous thoughtful man. Our marriage works because we believe in each other and we always have each others’ backs. We also each think we are the lucky one, which is pretty great, too. What are we doing for Valentine’s Day? My idea of a perfect Friday night – Ryan will bring home dinner from the Public Market, we’ll watch a movie (I rented “Now You See Me”), we’re going to pop some champagne, and I made a delicious Black Bottom Banana Cream Pie for dessert!
5. Battleground – We finished watching the movie version of “Battleground” by Stephen King this week. Reading the short story, then watching the movie helps us to reach those Common Core targets about comparing a story told through different media. The students were surprisingly insightful about the differences between the two versions, and why a director may have made the choice to alter the original story. Now, the movie has NO talking at all. At first, the students balked and whined, “Seriously? This is gonna suck.” 5 minutes into the movie, you can barely hear blinking and breathing, they are so riveted. I even had one kid tell me, “I was so excited to watch this movie, it’s the only reason I came to school today.” Um, great!
I hope you had a wonderful week and didn’t get too cold. Just remember, Spring is only 33 days away!
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