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We were challenged this week to present 4 questions that we want answered by the end of the semester. My first question is where to begin? We have talked about a wide variety of topics in methods class and I have learned so much since the beginning of the school year. However, I still feel as though there is so much I have yet to learn. This is exciting as well as a touch nerve-wracking. Do I know enough? Will I be a good teacher? So many, many questions, but I have chosen the following 4 as the most mystifying.


Mystifying Question #1: How does one learn the art of time management?Better Be Prompt!

I’m really bad at estimating how much time different activities/lessons will take. How can I conquer this important skill? What are some tips and tricks for making the most out of the limited amount of class time I have with my students?


messy-desk-sipressMystifying Question #2: What information should I keep in my anecdotal records?

We here it time and time again – document everything. However, it has never been explicitly explained what information I should be documenting. Some things are a no-brainer. For example, if a student threatens another student, then I should document the incident and then report it to administration. However, what other types of information should I be sure to include in my records? How often should I be recording this information? These records should be kept purely objective, correct? Therefore, should I keep more personal notes reflecting on my own teaching and my students in a separate journal?


Mystifying Question #3: Cooperating teacher – friend or foe?good-news-bad-news-msps-256x3001

What are the dynamics between student teacher and cooperating teacher? In my mind, my cooperating teacher would be my mentor. I would like to be able to talk honestly and openly with them about teaching. However, I have also been warned to not reveal too much about my nervousness or worries; because, after all, my cooperating teacher is judging my performance in the classroom. So, to open up or keep quiet?

Mystifying Question #4: Should I join a teacher’s union?

I hear a lot of mixed messages about the unions. I hear that they can protect you in legal situations. I also hear a lot about the messy politics involved in giving your money to a union. Would it be a good idea to join or just a waste of money?




A Microphone, Highly Caffeinated Drinks, and Roald Dahl

These are the ingredients, when mixed together, make a great Wednesday night. The English Honors club, Sigma Tau Delta, hosts Open Mic nights at a local coffee house every other Wednesday evening. These Open Mic nights give students and members of the community the opportunity to share written works as well as their musical talents.

Because I have no musical talents whatsoever, I instead attempt to lighten everyone’s week with a bit of humor. At least that was my intention last Wednesday when I read the following poem by Roald Dahl. Let it just be known that if you have never read anything by Dahl, you need to stop reading this blog and go check him out immediately! His poems and stories are crazy and funny and an absolute delight.



“If you are old and have the shakes”

By Roald Dahl

If you are old and have the shakes,
If all your bones are full of aches,
If you can hardly walk at all,
If living drives you up the wall,
If you’re a grump and full of spite,
If you’re a human parasite,
Your eyes will shine, your hair will grow,
Your face and skin will start to glow,
Your rotten teeth will all drop out
And in their place new teeth will sprout.
Those rolls of fat around your hips
Will vanish, and your wrinkled lips
Will get so soft and rosy–pink
That all the boys will smile and wink
And whisper secretly that this
Is just the girl they want to kiss!
But wait! For that is not the most
Important thing of which to boast.
Good looks you’ll have, we’ve told you so,
But looks aren’t everything, you know.
Each pill, as well, to you will give
So come, old friends, and do what’s right!
Let’s make your lives as bright as bright!
Let’s take a dose of this delight!
This heavenly magic dynamite!
You can’t go wrong, you must go right!


smiley faces


Being a part of Open Mic nights is more than just a club member requirement. It is a chance for me to share some of my favorite works and authors with an audience. Plus, it is the perfect time for me to exercise my drama skills! Funny faces, goofy voices, and all … Let’s just say I get a little into it …

However, at the next Open Mic night I will boldly do what I have never done before … I will be sharing a piece of my own writing. Thanks to the wonderful and encouraging feedback from the stellar and oh so stylin’ ladies of English Methods, I will be unleashing “Trying to be Cool” to the world!!




Rough Drafts and Tighty-Whiteys

So even though I missed the popular “Sharing Sunday,” I still want to share my rough draft of a piece I am working on for my English Methods class. Hopefully, I will someday be sharing a few laughs with my future students over this story.



“Trying to be Cool”

As a high school student you want to fit in. You try to wear the right clothes, style your hair in just the right way, hang out with the right crowd, and conform to a whole other slew of fads. There are those for whom this essence of being cool comes quite naturally, and then there are the rest of us. The majority of us whose journey to the elusive quality of “coolness” is bound to filled with mishaps along the way.

Like my classmate Brandon. In many aspects he was Mr. Cool at my high school. Star football and basketball player. He was tall, tan, and had dreamy blue eyes to boot. You would think he would be the one to start the trends rather than follow them. But this is the story of how Brandon went from Mr. Cool to Mr. Fool in just one class period.

For me P.E. was the dread of my freshman year. I was a skinny little twerp with knobby knees and no hope of ever achieving even a semblance of athletic ability. I could barely dribble a basketball down the court. But for the rest of my class it was their time to shine. They were all in sports and the teacher (who was also their coach) loved them. P.E. was the place for them to show off and be cool.  And after class it was time to change into those big brand-name t-shirts, drench yourself in body spray, then head out to impress the rest of the student body during lunch.

Now, you’re probably wondering when I’m going to get back to Brandon. Well, never fear, he enters our story once again. The current trend of the year for all of the guys was to shimmy their jeans halfway down their rear ends in order to show off the various shades and designs of their boxers. If everyone didn’t know whether you were wearing plaid or superman themed underwear that day, then you were obviously out of the loop. So, like most guys, Brandon wanted to be a part of the craze.

So let’s set the scene here. Being a girl I can only imagine the sequence of events at this point, but this would be my best guess. In the dark underworld of the boys’ locker room, where the toxic fumes of Axe fill the air, Brandon changed into his Buckle jeans and Hurley t-shirt. He carefully scooted down those jeans, just enough to show off his undergarments, but not enough to become a hassle when he walked. A few quick shakes of his golden locks and he was ready to emerge.

And oh boy did he cause a few heads to turn…. Brandon sauntered into the lunchroom proudly displaying a crisp, clean pair of tighty-whiteys. I learned that day that Brandon was a Hanes man. Just like Michael Jordan on the TV commercials, proudly taking comfort to the next level. All eyes were on this young man as he loaded his tray with the day’s nutritious and oh so delicious school lunch.

Needless to say that day was often brought up in the coming weeks’ banter. The day that Brandon, star football and basketball player, fell from his high perch as Mr. Cool to the lowly position of Mr. Fool. The moral of this story is, there are many bumps along the path to coolness, but now you know that flaunting your tighty-whiteys is not the way to go.