Saturday, August 29, 2009

why Kindergarten makes me happy...

As most of you know, I'm a Kindergarten teacher again this year. For me this is GREAT news! Kindergarten feels much more like my niche than 3rd grade did. I will say, I enjoyed some parts of 3rd grade, and I'll never have to wonder what it would be like to teach older students since, for a season that God gave me, I did! But this post is dedicated to Kindergarten.

And now here's my list... (maybe it will make you want to teach Kindergarten too)
~my former 3rd grade students act like I'm a celebrity when they see me in the halls, at lunch, or recess... they're happy greetings are much more loving than they ever were last year (distance must make the heart grow fonder for them too)
~my classroom is very spacious
~I have a wonderful full-time assistant teaching with me all day
~I only have 22 students currently
~one little boy went home and told his mom, "My teacher's pretty... she was wearing a new dress today" (I don't know why he thought it was new, I don't think it was!)
~I get random hugs all day long... some of them really like to squeeze you tightly too!
~my students are really excited to learn anything... "Wow! I can draw a 4, yay!", "Look I did it!" while practicing number writing on our white boards
~I get to start every day singing songs like "Rise & Shine" (a school version, not "Give God the glory, glory), "Hello, How are you?", "Days of the Week" (to the Adams' Family tune), "Macarena Months" (and we do dance), "Color Farm" (to Old MacDonald), and "Lettercize" (to the "Rocky" theme music)
~my students are very enthusiastic about learning and using their most polite manners
~guppies and goldfish will be arriving in a science kit for our room this week
~students say "I love you", "I really like school, and I'm coming back" frequently
~one little girl randomly chimes in "You're cute" throughout the day
~behavior problems are much easier to cope with and correct
~their small conversations and comments throughout the day oftentimes make me laugh... "Mrs. Peery I been to your house, really I have" "No, I don't think so J" "Yep, I been there - it's read" "No, J it's not red and it's an apartment" "Oh, well I been there too"... pretty interesting, the same boy also wanted to be line leader one day and told me "I'm the line leader, remember I called you this morning"... I have no idea what he's thinking about most of the time!
~apart from accidents (3 pukers and diarrhea in the room this week), and tiredness (no naps, that makes long days for some little ones) which happen more often in Kindergarten, the students are much more cheerful all day long!

*one amendment... I come home much happier to my dear husband (as in less stressed) than I did before, although Matt knows in some ways Kindergarten is much more tiring... I'm always moving during the day! This is the biggest perk for us both! :)

The Lord was so good to sustain me as He did during 3rd grade. I pray that my students and co-workers saw Jesus in me in spite of my weariness and complaints at times. This year, I also thank the Lord for His grace to keep me and give me perseverance each day as I teach these little ones!

Monday, August 3, 2009

a couple of easy and delicious dinners

These are a couple of easy and delicious dinners we've enjoyed lately. It's nice to cook at a more leisurely pace without feeling too tired at the end of the day. Soon I'll be back to school though, and I'll look back on these summer days with fond memories!

Both of these recipes can be found on their respective web-sites... my pictures may not look exactly the same as the ones on-line, but just think they're more "realistic"!

This one is called "Alaska Salmon Bake with Pecan Crunch Coating" from my variation was using ALDI's frozen salmon as opposed to fresh Alaskan salmon, but if you have that - go for it! I also made plain white minute rice (I never knew I could cook it in the microwave, which was very quick and easy), and sauteed asparagus too. We really love asparagus!

The next recipe is called "Lemon Shrimp with Parmesan Rice" from a "Taste of Home" magazine subscription someone gave us as a wedding gift. It was a great gift idea, that I really enjoyed and made much use of. Lots of our favorite recipes came from that year's magazines. (In this particular recipe I'd recommend using already peeled shrimp, although I can't find that at ALDI so I use the frozen pre-cooked kind, and we have to take the tails off before we eat it.) I also made a really refreshing "Peachy Iced Tea Sangria" (non-alcoholic) from a "Kraft Foods" magazine this evening. You can see it a little bit in the glass. It's also quick, easy, and tasty!

In a week or so, I'll post pictures of my newly (I'm in the process now) decorated and set-up Kindergarten class. Enjoy cooking if you decide to try these recipes... they may become favorites for your family too!