I almost hate to say it because I don't want to jinx myself, but today was probably the best day since starting the school year. Funny thing is, I wasn't expecting it to turn out that way at all.
Our morning started with a pretty big meeting, and I was not at all happy about the information I got before the meeting. It's so hard. On one hand, we teachers know our students, and we just want to do what's best for them. On the other hand the reading supervisor and specialists have all of the data and know the goals that must be met, and they work extremely hard to create sessions that best meet everybody's needs.
We were definitely a few miles apart, but everybody was professional and came in willing to listen. When all was said and done, we had a plan that honors the data, recognizes what the students need to meet the specific goals required this year, and keeps students in their classrooms during all of their subjects so they can still participate in subjects they love and activities that allow them to do authentic reading and writing. It was an extremely positive experience, and I'm really glad I got to be a part of it.
Then this afternoon I had a really positive experience with my students. One child has been out sick for about a week and a half. Using an idea that I learned from Brian Crosby, (@bcrosby) we connected via Skype. He participated in all of our lessons, small groups and Daily 5 blocks, and he seemed to be really excited to be with us. I had two kids who had some difficulty with it and were constantly waving at the computer, but 2 out of 24 is not bad! The kids were very happy to have him back, and I was, too. We'll continue to Skype him in until he can come back to school. My only regret is not thinking of this sooner!
I talk about the stuff I do a lot here, but I'm not one to go around and tell the people I work with what's going on in my room. I don't want to seem like I'm bragging or try to set expectations for others. But I was really excited about this so I told my next door neighbor, and she came to check it out. I think karma didn't want my head to get too big about it, though, because as soon as she left I was on puke detail - walking somebody to the nurse's office with a trash can just in case. Nothing brings you back to Earth faster than thinking about the potential opportunity to catch puke in a trash can! ;)
So I'm going to ride this wave of positive into the weekend and see what we can do to take the next steps on Monday!