High Five For Friday! 11/8/13

Adios, week 10! It was a difficult and LONG week, especially with WKCE State Testing, but there are always the highlights to celebrate.

Sharing Photos Tech Poster (c) Kristen Dembroski

1. Share Responsibly –  I love seeing this Technology Poster hanging outside my room and throughout my school. I think it is wonderful that adults are realizing the role we play in modeling and guiding students to make good decisions online. How will students ever learn these skills otherwise? Well, besides the few students who have crashed, burned, and learned the hard way. We need to be proactive and provide lessons in respectful and responsible digital citizenship. Man, I never had to worry about any of this as a kid – it’s tough being a teen today!

Sunny Clouds (c) Kristen Dembroski

2. Sunny Mornings – The end of Daylight Savings is actually a really sad event for me. I try very hard to shirk my season depression each year, but it is a real challenge. Right now in Wisconsin, we only get about 8-9 hours of sunlight each day. And it’s only going to get worse. I MISS SUMMER!!! Even taking the dog for a walk after I get home from work is difficult as the sunlight begins to fade. The one highlight I have (since that is what High Five For Friday is all about) is that I am enjoying seeing the sun a bit more on my way to work in the morning. This was the gorgeous view on Tuesday.

Tiles and Strips (c) Kristen Dembroski

3. Letter Tiles and Highlight Strips – I’ve ordered some new materials for my reading interventions. I tell you, as an 8th grade middle school teacher, these are just not items that we normally expect to see and use in a middle school classroom, so this took some investigating to specifically pinpoint student needs. I have purchased letter tiles and highlight strips. I plan to do some phoneme-grapheme mapping with my struggling readers to help get them up to speed with phonics. I will also use the highlight strips with several students to help them focus on one line of text at a time – attention is a real issue for several students, and I think this will help (while also being somewhat private and not making the student feel ‘stupid.’). I will introduce these tools to my group next week and we will attach these foundational skills head on!!! They will catch up to speed with their peers!!

Long Hallway (c) Kristen Dembroski

4. The Looooooong Hallway – Okay this is just silly, I know. When the students are at their Specials/Applieds classes, this is my prep time. I spend it working feverishly and running around with my head cut off, of course. But the hallways are so… empty. And long! I get a lot of walking in. My Fitbit says I walk around 5 miles a day at work. So one thing I do – I guess just to feel alive – is I close my eyes while I walk down the long hallway. I challenge myself to see how many steps I can get before opening my eyes. I’m at 15, in case you were going to ask.

Rocket & Tyger (c) Kristen Dembroski

5. The Dogs – While my sister is out of town interviewing for dental school residency positions, I have been dog-sitting. My dog Rocket (black and white, left side) and her dog Tyger (white, right side) get along fantastically. As you can guess, they get into a heap of trouble, too! They constantly play fight, which is awesome. It tires them both out, and they love it. In this picture, though, they are both sitting on the back of the couch, a no-no, looking so innocent. “What? We’re just chilling, watching the street for potential people/dogs/leaves/cars/etc. to bark at. Nothing to see here.” Stinkers! I love them <3


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14 Comments on High Five For Friday! 11/8/13

  1. Stephanie McConnell
    November 8, 2013 at 5:48 am (11 years ago)

    That is a very long hallway! I know all too much about those. I definitely get my exercise in just walking the halls.

    • kdembro
      November 8, 2013 at 6:39 am (11 years ago)

      Nice! I am also known to break the rules and run when the kids aren’t looking. When they catch me, I am SOOOO busted!

  2. Leslie Tally
    November 8, 2013 at 6:21 am (11 years ago)

    Hi! Just popped over to visit; I found you through the Five for Friday link-up. I’m currently a first grade teacher, and I wasn’t altogether shocked to see that you still have a need for phonics instruction at your instructional level. Good for you for addressing the issue and getting directly to the root of the problem for some of your struggling readers! I love your blog!

    • kdembro
      November 8, 2013 at 6:34 am (11 years ago)

      Welcome Leslie! I also love your blog – great work! Yes, I am surprised to see more and more need for foundational skills at the 8th grade level. The good news is that their comprehension is more or less up to speed when they are read to, which tells me that filling in a few phonic and morphemic gaps here and there will be the missing ingredient to get them up to speed. Oy, my heart hurts for these kids that no one has targeted their needs before now! Thank you again for your comments, and I look forward to reading more of your blog as well!

  3. Jessie K
    November 8, 2013 at 12:44 pm (11 years ago)

    I am loving your blog!
    I am thinking about purchasing a FitBit. I am curious to know how much I really walk in a day. I was reading an article about needing to burn 3,500 calories to lose a pound of fat (or something like that). It sounds like A LOT. But, between exercising and doing every day activities, could it be that hard? Maybe I am just under a rock about all that. haha.

    I just got a new puppy. I just want to bring him to school with me. I visit him on my break (thank goodness I live close)! Your pup and your sisters pup look like they are having so much fun! Take a look at my blog if you want an overdose of cuteness hehe.


    • kdembro
      November 9, 2013 at 5:09 pm (11 years ago)

      Thank you so much, Jessie! I love my FitBit. It really pushes me to be more active. I look forward to following your blog! Thank you again for your comment!

  4. Serena
    November 8, 2013 at 2:17 pm (11 years ago)

    I’ve just found your blog through the linky as well and started following along! That poster is great! I teach year six in New Zealand and even at 10-11 kids have such a strong online presence already it’s vital we’re teaching them this.

    I love that you try getting down that hallway with your eyes closed- I do that when I’m walking at the beach! It’s actually a great challenge (and probably quite good for your brain too haha)

    x Serena x
    Magic Mistakes & Mayhem

    • kdembro
      November 9, 2013 at 5:26 pm (11 years ago)

      Hi Serena – welcome and thanks for visiting my blog! I look forward to checking out your blog as well! Have a great day 🙂

  5. Kim
    November 8, 2013 at 3:32 pm (11 years ago)

    I can’t wait to hear more about how you use the letter tiles and highlighting strips. I am always on the lookout for new reading strategies for struggling readers. I’m loving your blog!
    Your newest follower,
    Mrs. H’s Resource Room

    • kdembro
      November 9, 2013 at 5:27 pm (11 years ago)

      Hi Kim – I can’t wait to check out your blog! I will be sure to share our progress with the letter tiles and highlight strips. Have a wonderful day!

  6. Monica
    November 8, 2013 at 7:44 pm (11 years ago)

    I have both highlight strips and letter tiles, and thanks to you I now have an idea on how to use them in my classroom. Thanks for sharing.

    • kdembro
      November 9, 2013 at 5:27 pm (11 years ago)

      Hi Monica – how awesome you already have these great tools! Glad I could provide a spark/idea for their use in your classroom. I’ll be posting follow-up ideas regarding how we use them in our intervention group. Thanks, and have a great day!

  7. Old School Speech
    November 9, 2013 at 6:37 am (11 years ago)

    What ADORABLE dogs! That hallway does look pretty long. No wonder kids feel the need to run down halls when they’re the only ones in it! 🙂

    • kdembro
      November 9, 2013 at 5:29 pm (11 years ago)

      Thank you – I think they’re pretty adorable too! They are called ‘Teddybears’ for a reason, I suppose! I agree about the kiddos running – it’s way too tempting!


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