Sunday, February 23, 2014

First Half Highlights

At our annual holiday faculty lunch in December before we all headed off for break, my principal did something different. He recognized the teachers who had perfect attendance so far this school year.  I was inspired by this idea.  I thought, "We should do this for our students too!" 

 Next year, I am going to plan to recognize our top readers in December or January. I think this may promote participation in our reading program. It definitely can't hurt right? I don't necessarily mean prizes or awards, I am just thinking of recognizing them and telling them to keep up the good work. We had a Super Reader event in December, and that would have been the perfect opportunity to recognize the top reader from each grade level. Next year, we'll do that.
Half year perfect attendance also caused me to reflect on the highlights of my school year from August until December. I try to take pictures of everything I do. Looking back though the pictures helps me review and remember. I often use the pictures in my annual report.  So, over our break I put together a photo collage of the highlights.

We got some cool new seating in the periodical area. Now students can sit down and browse through a favorite magazine. I wanted to play off of the bright colors of our Chihuly type sculpture and capitalize on the green tones of the library, so I got some Granny Smith Apple chairs. They are modern looking and the kids love them.    We also got an end table that flips up to double as a laptop or table stand. That is not seeing much action yet, but I hope it will. 

The Day of the Dead Family Library Night had all the right ingredients: a craft, refreshments, we even had authentic Mexican bread, a writing activity and a presentation about the holiday by one of the Spanish teachers at the high school. Despite the fliers, announcements and advertisements in the local paper, student and parent attendance was really disappointing. Maybe our community is just not ready for something like this. However, the faculty came out for me. I was blown away to have eight teachers attend the event. What a heartwarming treat that was.

I am pleased with how well the Super Reader Program has gone and the Divergent book club was fun. We are excited about the movie premiering in March. Our school wide read of Sharon Draper's Out of my Mind was wonderful and extremely worthwhile.

One of my favorite new additions to our library venue is Chess Club. I am proud to say that I now know how to play chess. I am not that good at it, yet, but I can play. I am also proud to say that my teacher was and still is - a student! Emily is so patient with me! I really enjoy our games. We now have tournaments almost every week and our principal has agreed to purchase some new boards and even a timer for us. We plan to have tournaments between the three grades as well.