Sunday, August 19, 2012

Partnership in Life

NEVER EVER make someone a priority in your life when you have zero importance in theirs, especially after years. If their actions reflect that they don't give a shit, accept it, and move on. It is wasted time and energy when there are plenty of people in the world ready to make the commitment to be an actual partner in life, and want more than just surface relationships. The term "partner" can be applied in different ways. Partner as in friendships, romantic relationships, colleagues, peers, etc. Actions speak louder than words. Promises are just forms of "verbal rhetoric" when lacking any follow through. The people close to us reflect our inner-selves and help shape us to be better people in our future. Never stay in something that makes you feel worthless, degraded, unintelligent, belittled and/or uninspired, even if it's comfortable. Find people who uplift you, prioritize you, love you for you, listen to you, take interest in your life, and can actually be supportive. Life will reward you with new, fresh, hellos for saying good-bye and walking away from unhealthy baggage.

Loosing or Gaining? How Do We Decipher and Interpret these Terms as Humans?

Funny how certain songs come on right when you are in midthought about things, people, places, events, etc. that the singular song would make you think about.

Today, I was looking at old photos from my past. Photos with old friends and people I used to be very close with. While doing this, the song “You and Me” by Lifehouse comes on my Pandora station. I haven’t listened to this song in years. This was my ex-boyfriend and my “song” in high school. Sometimes I think the universe drops these things into our lives to make us reflect on our past and move in the right direction for the future. Reflecting back, it sure is funny how certain songs, lyrics, and music in general bring everything back to you as if it were yesterday; sometimes for the best or the worst.

Life Questioning : How do we move forward, while holding onto memories, while not being stuck in the past, but looking towards the future and living in the present? What a doozie, I know. I am sure if we had this answer a lot of us would have an easier time living in the now, reflecting on the past but not holding onto it, and having a positive outlook for the future.

I had never truly lost something/someone super important to me until the past year. I don’t even know if I want to use the terminology “lost” because it’s not that it is lost, it just wasn’t good anymore. People grow and change and life ebbs and flows. I don’t know if “lost” is a good term to use for the ending of relationships either platonic or non-platonic. So here’s the question in the making - How do we hold on to the wonderful memories, heal the hurt, trust again, and build intimacy with others when sometimes the hurt from the past takes over?

I am sure each and every one of us has lost someone we valued and trusted very much. We have all experienced breaking up, growing apart from friends, and loosing people due to death. This process of “loosing” is something every human can relate to but it seems like a lot of us do not want to write, discuss, or listen about the topic. Do we fear loss? Do we want to hold on tight to comfort? I don’t have the answers, but I have been pondering it lately.

Recently, I have been reflecting on how to navigate loosing people in life, growing and learning from hurt without letting bitterness take over. I used to be such a care free soul before my long-term relationship. I now feel like I have twenty walls up with a mote around me with tons of alligators in it. I am an extrovert and love chatting with people, BUT actually, I mean actually letting people in seems so much more difficult now than it was in the past. As we age and experience hurt, do we build more walls to keep people out? How do we let people into our inner-selves and how do we develop intimacy after intimacy has been damaged?

I think as humans we learn and grow from everything we experience. I have been trying to navigate how to let go and move on from the past in a healthy manner. Life goes on and as Bob Dylan said, “keep on keeping on.”

Some quotes :

"Be Soft. Do not let the world make you hard. Do not let pain make you hate. Do not let the bitterness steal your sweetness. Take pride that even though the rest of the world may disagree, You still believe it to be a beautiful place."

"After a while you learn the subtle difference between holding a hand and chaining a soul. And you learn that love doesn't mean security, and you begin to learn that kisses aren't contracts and presents aren't promises. And you begin to accept your defeats with your head up and your eyes open. With the grace of maturity, not the grief of a child. And you learn to build all your roads on today because tomorrow's ground is too uncertain for plans. And futures have a way of falling down in mid-flight. After a while you learn that even sunshine burns if you get too much. So plant your own garden and decorate your own soul instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers. And you learn that you can really endure, that you really are strong and that you really do have worth. And you learn and learn and learn with every goodbye you learn." -Veronica A. Shoffstall

Just some relationship reflection for now.....

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Thursday, October 20

On Thursday, October 20 we covered the drill for after lesson 21 and lesson 22. We are almost through the first binder of lessons, and I only have 11 classes with my students due to Thanksgiving and Christmas. Bums me out, these students have really touched my heart, and they all hold a place near and dear to me.

Thursday was a gloomy, nasty, rainy day, and only three students ended up making it to class. A lot of the students have troubles with transportation when the weather is bad due to public transit and lack of transportation/vehicles.

We began our day with blending sounds. We read together and then each student had to read an entire section individually.

id rid grid
ip lip flip
isk risk frisk
in int rint print

an and band
en end bend
ip rip trip
ot pot spot

in int mint
un unt runt
af aft raft
ef eft left

We then practiced final blends by utilizing the same method.
bast best bist bust
dast dest dist dust
rast rest rist rust
tast test tist tust

bant bent bint bunt
mant ment mint munt
hant hent hint hunt
sant sent sint sunt

bask besk bisk busk
nask nest nisk nusk
pask pesk pisk pusk
vask vesk visk vusk

land lend lind lund
hand hend hind hund
sand send sind sund
mand mend mind mund

After working on blending a dictated words. My students had to echo the words and tell me the vowel sound in each.
pent spent trump blend rust mint crust flip task blunt

We then practiced full sentences. I had each student come up the board and write out a sentence for me.
1) Rex went and fed his pet pig.
2) Greg sent help to mend the tent.
3) The tan box will rust in the damp desk.

In lesson 22 we covered new concepts.

We started with the alphabet and sound system We worked on alphabetizing by the third letter, and worked out of our student worksheet. We then worked with alliteration.

In new learning, we learned long vowel a, e, and i and practiced our coding - "A vowel in an open syllable is long, code it with a macrion."

We learned that long vowels say their name.

Key words - long vowel a = apex, long vowel e = equal, long vowel i = iris

We then worked on spelling by orally listening and spelling. We then worked on writing and the plural rule of adding suffix s to a base word.

drum -- drums
tab -- tabs

The procedure for spelling derivatives is:
1) listen and echo the whole word
2) say the base word
3) spell the base word aloud
4) name and write the base word
5) add the suffix and verbalize the rule
6) code and read

I had a student who is from Africa and is going back to visit his family for three months. His last day in my class was Thursday. It was so touching to talk to him. He gave me a big hug and told me to keep in touch and that I was a great teacher. It is moments like this when students tell you they really appreciate what you do that makes it all worth it. I know when I have a career, I need to be doing something that impacts people in a positive manner. Pay it forward everyone - Happy Sunday :)

Friday, October 14, 2011

Thursday, October 19

A card one of my students bought me because he cannot return to class due to his job
On Thursday, October 19th we covered the drill for after lesson 19 and lesson 20. In the drill we worked on initial blends and final sounds.

I read words to my students, asked them to repeat the word, and then drop the initial sound.
stump (tump) frog (rog) pride (ride) trash (rash) brush (rush) cramp (ramp) smith (mith) blush (lush) crest (rest)

I think gave them more words, and told them to drop the last sound.
steep (stee) strip (stri) send (sen) grand (gran) hello (hell) test (tes) enlist (enlis) left (lef) work (wor)

We then worked on a student worksheet and practiced words with the same initial and final sounds but different short vowel sounds.
Example - brat, bret, brit, brout, brut

We practiced spelling by looking at how many sounds were in certain words, then looked at how many letters are in each word. I had each student come up to spell on the board.
doll, cliff, fret, grip, grid, bliss, flag, stub, plot, fed, Fred

We utilized another worksheet to practice the Floss Rule
ff ll ss
off dull hiss

I had each student come to the board to spell the following words : still, stress, gloss, blot, trap, twist

We then practiced difference sentences
1) We had a bell, a box, and a grill.
2) Six men fell on the brass step.

I assigned my students a homework worksheet that included sentences with missing words that could be found in the word bank. They had to fill in the blanks in the sentences with the proper words.

In lesson 20 we covered the alphabet by orally reciting it. We then practiced alphabetizing by working on a student worksheet. We practiced final sounds by isolating and changing the final sounds in words to create new words.

Change the final sound to g:
pen - peg
rub - rug
lot - log
bid - big

Change the final sound to m
sat - Sam
bus - bum
dig - dim
gut - gum
hen - hem

In new learning we worked on making words plural.

Base word + subjunctive = derivative (plurals)

We practiced by making singular words into plural words by adding on the suffix s.

In reading we practiced the daily reading deck, names and letters, key words, and sounds. We reviewed high frequency words and read off a student worksheet that focused on high frequency words. To practice reading context we worked with high frequency words: just, must, tell, get, list, last, spell and learned words: one, two, could, should, would.

We worked on making words plural on a student worksheet where the students had to identify singular naming nouns, and add s to them.

To practice spelling, we orally spelt words and wrote out words. We focused specifically on adding s to words to make them plural.

I had my student spell log - logs and band - bands.

One of my students, who was dedicated to learning and attending class, had to tell us he can no longer come to class. He bought all the instructors cards and explained that his boss at work will not let him miss since it is starting "Christmas" season. This is an issue that arises for a lot of students from out of the country or living in a lower socioeconomic situation. He explained to this boss that he was enrolled in a literacy class on Tuesdays and Thursdays when it first began, and his boss now told him he can't miss work. It happens a lot with our students, they are dedicated to coming, but work interferes.

Thursday, October 6th

On Thursday, October 6th we covered the drill for after lesson 17 and lesson 18. During our drill we practiced blends.
I gave the blends fl, gr, tr, sl, bl, pl, br, and dr and every one of my students had to say a word that begun with each blend.
Next, we worked on initial sounds and blends. I said each word, and my students had to give me the initial sounds in each and the blend.
flake, sprite, stun, bland, proof, grief, blouse, crutch, slippery
We then practiced blends on a worksheet, which included words with the same vowel and final sound but the initial and blends changed. Each student had to read aloud.
We practiced short vowel sounds. I dictated the following words to my students: tram, cud, stip, heb, pris, blot, mog, sav, hox, and ven. My students had to identify the vowel in each and give me the sound of that vowel. We also used a worksheet, I dictated words and then they had to decide which vowel sound was in the word.
To practice spelling we worked with rhyming words, dictation, and sentences.
I gave my students the words : rob, clap, bend, miss, time, bell, hand, nick
They had to come up with words that rhymed with each of these.
I dictated the following words : clam, dram, flit, split, drop, prop, club, stub, wet, and fret. I had my students identify the vowels in each and spell them on the board.
We then practiced sentences including:
The pink cross cost six cents.
Mom sent Bill to trim the grass.
My dog will sniff to find scraps of food.
I also assigned my students a homework sheet where they had to match two words with the same meaning to practice definitions/context.
In lesson 18, we practiced the alphabet and alphabetizing. We used a worksheet to alphabetize words in columns. We had two columns of words. The first column we did together in class, and the second was assigned as homework.
To practice the sound system we worked with alliteration. Students were given three words that started with the same letter, and then had to produce two more words that began with the same letter.
pot, pan, pat
best, book, blue
see, sat, some
two, toes, touch
can, come, catch
house, hen, help
rain, ranch, race
**Alliteration refers to the repetition of the same initial sound of several words in a sentence or phrase.
In new learning, we learned that s makes a (z) sound when voiced. The new key word is nose (z).
My students completed a worksheet to practice the voiced z sound.
Rule: (V) s = (z) (V)ss=(s)
Vowel with one s after makes z sound
Vowel with two ss's after make s sound
Note: letter before the s determines if it is s or z sound
To practice reading, we did our daily reading deck, naming the letters, key words, and sounds.
We also practiced short vowel drill focusing on e and i, and completed a student worksheet focusing specifically on e and i (reading words with short vowels e and i in them)
We practiced high frequency words : is, as, his, has
learned words: oh, was, with, you, put, do, Monday, why
We worked on surprise sentences and used two student worksheets to find them and label them. We practiced the four different types of sentences:
1) telling
2) asking
3) command
4) surprise
To practice spelling, we spelled orally first and then wrote out words. We also learned the Floss Rule and spelt the words stiff, frill and spill.
Floss Rule: vowel in a closed syllable is short, code it with a breve; 2 like consonants - 2nd code silent
Example - stiff (second f is silent)