Bad Words.

It blows my mind to hear what kids say when they think there aren’t any adults in hearing distance. I’ve become known for being super sneaky and blending in while kids are talking and catching them slip up. I’ve become the “cool but mean” teacher. They love me. I know they do because they tell me, they ask to have lunch with me and sometimes they just want to sit down and talk about things that have nothing to do with school. But they hate me at the same time. I’m the one that always catches the inappropriate words being said or the rude actions being had. I don’t know why, but I feel like it’s always me. Some of the things being done and said, are shocking. Names they use, the choice of words they make are repulsive. I can’t remember even knowing some of the words they use when I was their age and the ones I knew, were only allowed to be used by adults. If I even dared to mumble one of those words, even to this day at the ripe age of twenty two, my mother would smack my head. 

My favorite example of being the sneaky teacher was when I caught a few boys in the cafeteria throwing things at each other. I made them sign their behavior logs and then they went back to eating lunch. I knew they were really mad at me because they poured the rest of lunch. As they were walking out of the lunch room, I was right behind them and they didn’t know. They even looked around to see if I was near them but they didn’t look directly behind. They started talking bad about me and saying mean things about how I wasn’t their teacher and so on and so on. I stuck my head right between theirs and said, “Did you need to say something to me?” I thought they were going to pass out because they were so scared and embarrassed! Haha! ❤

Things My Dad Says…

Oh, Scotty. The world’s most philosophical human. Well, at least to me. The other day, he called me with bad news. A lot of bad news. He always has a way of breaking bad news to me, so that it doesn’t sound as bad as it actually is. He called and it started out with, “Did mom tell you?” She hadn’t. He told me that my Papaw, my mom’s dad, had lung cancer. Again. He had just made his nearly full recovery from the first round of lung cancer, so this was a big blow to our hearts. He also wasn’t very optimistic the first time around, so we worry his spirits will disappear and he will be in a depressed slump, just like before. 

As I hear this news, I automatically think of my momma. She lost her mother, Grammy, the woman who inspired me to be a teacher, to pancreatic cancer just three years ago. It all but killed my mom to go through that loss. I can’t imagine how she would react to her daddy being sick again. 

To top it off, my mom found out the day before finding out that Papaw’s cancer returned, that her best friend since she was in high school, has Lupus. She’s 42. She flew out to see her in New York last night and surprised her. It was much needed for both of them.

Finally, my dad said, “Did you hear about Aunt Chase’s mom?” I hadn’t heard about that either. She had heart problems and had to be hospitalized. Apparently, it’s really really bad. I worry for my aunt because she’s so close to her mom and her four kids adore their grandmother. 

Then, dad said, “Those are our three.” I didn’t know what he meant and I just sort of mumbled, “Yea.” He said, “When bad things happen in this family, it’s seldom. We are very lucky. But when they do, they always happen in threes.” It’s true. He pointed out other situations like this and it really does come in threes. He says some pretty…different…things, but sometimes what he says is just right and in turn, eases my mind and makes me feel a little better about the things that go wrong that I can’t control. ❤

Pre Test and Post Test

Today I finished a unit of math with my 4th graders. I had to do this for a project for my senior year to show growth and the power of teaching. I gave the students a pre test of the material and like I figured, they bombed it. I had a few students get them all right and I was really excited about that. I didn’t expect them to know how to do any of the work. Then I taught all week. I was frustrated at times and students were all on some days and off some days which made things more crazy. But today, I gave the post tests which were exactly the same as the pre test. The students did amazing! Not all of them improved but all of them passed! It made all the frustrations so worth it. I’m so proud of them today! ❤

I’m an adult now, or so I hear. 

So many things have been going on lately. More and more events or moments that scream, “You’re becoming an adult.” Now, I’ve been legally an adult for four years but considering I was in college for those four years, I never truly considered myself an adult. Sure, I made my own decisions, however, my parents still pay for everything I do. I’ve never paid for my phone bill, my car insurance, my apartment rent OR utilities or even college tuition. I am BEYOND lucky for not having the stress of money put on my back in college. I know my parents stressed about it, but they never let me worry. As long as I performed well in school, they would take care of the rest. Deal of a lifetime, I know! They always took care of me, as I’m sure they will in the future. However, in three months, after graduation, it’s all on me. It’s up to me to get a teaching job, it’s up to me to pay the bills and it’s up to me to do everything for myself. I never realized how much of a brat I sound like, until now. I had this realization today when I had to call the landlord because my garbage disposal wasn’t working. Come to find out, I had somehow let a measuring spoon get into the hole and it caused the entire thing to break down. (I was SO embarrassed that I had caused this minor thing and made my landlord drive all the way over to help.) But I handled it. Just like I handled my two flat tires this summer (I’ll admit, I called my dad crying before handling it.) Just like I handled a tough work situation in January and just like I learned how to go pay my rent and bills on my own. It’s all happening so fast but with the push of my parents and the drive I have, I know I can do this. I know I can find a job and I know that I can do all these things in my own. How scary is it to grow up?! 😦 ❤

Mrs. B 

Mrs. B is my cooperating teaching for my student teaching experienece. I cannot express how lucky I am to have her. She has been beyond helpful and her years of experience in teaching have helped me excel in many things already. 

I’ve been in Mrs. B’s classroom since the beginning of this year. I used to only come on Wednesdays, but now, as a full time student teacher, I am here every day. Since the beginning, she has had me co- teach with her. Most of my classmates don’t have this opportunity as they spend a lot of time observing. I find myself to be extraordinarily lucky because Mrs. B has been throwing me in every day, on a different topic, since I’ve been here. 

Another thing Mrs. B does that sets my experience apart from others is that she communicates so well with me. I feel like I’m constantly getting emails from her about what to expect the next day, what I need to prepare, things she found interesting or even things for me to read because she thinks they will be beneficial to me and my future and current classroom. I know I can never stop growing and learning as an educator and she reminds me of that daily. 

Aside from preparing me and making sure I’m always learning, Mrs. B has been so loving towards me. She always takes the time to tell me how much she appreciates my help and stops to give me a hug at the end of the day. She’s understanding towards a bad day mood and she genuinely cares about my wellbeing, phycially and mentally. She reminds me so much of my Nana, as her personality with the students as well as myself, is so sweet and kind. 

It’s safe to say that I have, by far, the greatest cooperating teacher and school placement ever and that I will be so prepared ( I hope!) for my own classroom next year! ❤

A Few Good Friends

My dad has said to me, several times, “If you have even one good friend when you’re an adult, you’re very lucky.” I remember the first time he told me this. I was in 7th grade and all I could think was, “I have so many friends, like, at least twenty good friends. He doesn’t know what he’s talking about.” Middle school ended and I didn’t have twenty friends anymore, I probably had around ten. Still, that was more than one and my dad was still crazy. After I graduated high school, my friends and I promised to keep in touch. That just wasn’t plausible. I was going to a private school away from Bloomington, while all my friends and classmates went to IU. I kept in touch and didn’t worry about the fact that I only talked to a few of them because I knew I was going to make new friends in college. And I did. However, it was just like before. Start out with a lot and end with a few. I’m starting to see what my dad was talking about. I have a few good friends. I have to say that I’ve started to realize that what my dad really meant was, quality over quantity. I would consider myself very lucky. ❤

Learning Disabled 

Such a negative sounding term, don’t you think? Growing up with my little brother, Tommy, first brought this term into our family. When his second grade teacher brought my parents in to discuss the fact that she thought Tommy needed to be tested for ADHD, my mother lost it. I was only in 6th grade at the time and all I could get out of it was that Mrs. Such and Such knew nothing and that Tommy was completely fine. I vaguely remember, “He’s just a little boy being a little boy. He doesn’t need medication!” But she was wrong, and Tommy did need medication. He needed help. He acted much more immature than his classmates and he struggled with keeping friends. He couldn’t concentrate in class and it was as if his brain was moving a mile a minute. He was all over the place. Taking his teacher’s advice, Tommy began taking medications. He had to try at least four before they got it right. Some made him gain weight, some made him mean or angry and some made him a zombie. They finally got it right. He’s taken this medication ever since and now, as an 18 year old high school senior, he has spectacular grades, he’s a D1 prospective athlete and he has goals to become an electrical engineer. It’s not a learning disability. It’s a bump in the road. 

Until this year, Tommy used his “disability” to his advantage. He would get a C on a test and his argument would be, “Mom! I’m not Jaicee! I can’t get all A’s. I have a learning disability!” He knew very well that he wasn’t learning disabled, but he would argue it anyways. I was always the straight A student. I read well above my reading level and I never struggled in school. Then, this year, my senior year of college, I was diagnosed with ADHD and now take medication myself. Tommy can no longer use his famous excuse of “not living up to his big sister” and I realized that just because there is an issue that gets in the way of learning, does not mean that, with the right steps, it can’t be overcame. I will say, however, growing up with Tommy and the experiences that came with his ADHD, taught me so much that I apply to teaching. No one case is the same, but my experiences sure enlightened me. ❤

I Have it All.

Sometimes I forget just how lucky I am. I feel like I have found myself being very selfish lately and I thought that I would blog about the things I’m grateful for. 

– I’m grateful for my mother. She has been the most annoying person in my life, however, she is the biggest influence on me and she has made me the person I am today. She literally has, and continues, to give up anything and everything for me. I am forever grateful for her and saddened by the fact that my busy life doesn’t let me go home enough.

– I’m grateful for my dad. He’s been my best friend since I can remember. 

– My brother, Tommy. He’s more like myself than he thinks. He just doesn’t know he’s the better version. 

– I’m grateful for friends and the rest of my family and I don’t thank them enough for all they do for me.

– I’m grateful for the opportunities I’ve been given through school and everyday life and how God always seems to have a plan for me.

– I’m grateful for Grammy. My own personal angel to watch over me, without her I wouldn’t have even dreamed of teaching. She’s the greatest teacher I’ve ever known.

There is so much more but it’s obvious I’m so beyond lucky! ❤

My Own Version of Sunshine. 

Woke up this morning and literally groaned. I couldn’t believe it was already 5:40 am and there was no two hour delay, even after a boatload of rain and some freezing temperatures this morning. Back to student teaching and day two of the standardized test, ISTEP. I got ready, made some tea, kissed David goodbye and ran out the door. My stuff was falling all over the place and I was struggling to even make it my car. All I could think was, “If this is how this day is going to go, then I’m not ready!” Finally showed up to school, already four minutes late and stumbled in the door, dragging my bag and with a slippery, cotton glove, grip on my glass coffee mug. I quickly walked to class, obviously as fast as my little feet could carry me in my wet boots. However, walking through the door felt like I was walking into a completely different world today.  My bad day, which was only a couple of bad hours really, was completely changed around. I walked into “MISS BLAIS!” and a few hugs. Then quickly the class was getting ready to learn. It’s crazy how just a few hugs and the excitement on their faces to see me, even though they’ve known me for pretty much the whole year, can completely change my outlook on the day. Today was a wonderful, fantastical, perfectly good, very great day. ❤