Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Slice of Life - An Open Letter to Honda

Dear Honda,

I didn't always think I would love your Odyssey minivan.  I actually wasn't thrilled to buy my first Honda Odyssey minivan.  I was nauseous and outgrowing your lovely Accord station wagon as we expected our third baby.  I thought this was going to be a short term relationship on that cold winter day 13 years ago.  Our relationship is anything but short term and I should probably confess more about our relationship.  My husband works for you and we moved to the Midwest to work for you.  So, our relationship started long before the day we bought our first Honda Odyssey minivan, it began in August of 1992.  Let's get back to the current status of our relationship.

Over the years, we've been blessed to lease company cars for two years.  I am currently driving my 5 minivan.  I've driven midline models and top of the line models.  I think I fell in love with you when the sliding doors became an option and I could have them open with groceries and three kids in tow or the many bags I carry out of my classroom each night.  I not only love you for these features but driving a minivan has come in handy when I was the traveling soccer mom doing the carpool thing or going camping with Girl Scouts.  What's been more enjoyable is driving a Honda Odyssey minivan when the grandparents visit and we can all go places in one car very comfortably or the long drives for family vacations with beach gear and dogs in tow.  Falling in love again can be a good thing and happened with the vacuum in my current minivan.  

I have to confess though with all this love and our relationship going way beyond short-term status, I am quite sad about the current color options and I just want to make a recommendation to your company.  If you want to see a revival of the minivan love for others - then why not offer some colors  that are softer, lighter, less dreary?  I don't think a shocking color is the color for your target audience but Moms with three kids still have minivan needs without looking dreary.  They need to move things back and forth to college, they still have groups of kids to drive around, vacations to take and grandparents who visit.  They might even want to drive around a carload of girlfriends for FUN!

So, Dear Honda - please consider just looking at your color options from your Pilot line and brightening up the image of your fantastic Honda Odyssey or even bring back one or two from pervious years; light blue, cashmere, a hint of green would just be nice.

Thank you and if you really want to rock the minivan world, what about a convertible?  A del Sol Super Sized.

Thank you to Two Writing Teachers for inviting teachers to write and share their writing with each other.  This community helps teachers and students grow in writing.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Slice of Life - Did I hear her right?

She asked me to read her paper when I got home from parent teacher conferences.  This was her second attempt on the project and a much better version.  We make a few adjustments.  We have a few questions for her teacher and I purposefully created these questions so she had to ask for help and clarification.  We are getting near the end of her piece and I'm starting to feel how tired I really am from the day when I'm not sure I heard her right.

"Under-case the word Cinema."

I know I turned and looked quite puzzled.  I wasn't sure I heard her just right.  I questioned what that meant.  She looked at me as if I wasn't listening.  Her expression made me stop and think I should understand the word under-case.  But I didn't understand so I asked again for clarification.

"You know, make the c smaller."  

I burst out laughing and we had fun talking about uppercase and lowercase.  It's always interesting to hear how students or your own children create phrases to explain what they need.

Thank you to Two Writing Teachers for inviting teachers to write and share their writing with each other.  This community helps teachers and students grow in writing.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Slice of Life - Slowing Down

Finished the unit, moving on and launch the Unit 6 Week 1 Day 1.  That was Monday early afternoon word study until my students went to lunch and recess.  Mondays are great, I get an hour of no duties and meetings.  Quiet promotes reflection and barely obtainable in an elementary school.  My reflections kept circling around the suggested resources guidance of 80% scores on post assessments are considered mastery of a unit.  Half of my students just missed it.  There was overall improvement but we didn't meet that expectation.  

Then my reflection went to the unit itself.  In this unit we were to work on combining syllables to form multisyllabic words.  A further description is two closed syllables together which is really code for compound words.  If there are three consonants together, the blend usually goes with the second syllable to divide the word, like children.  The students were introduced to more suffixes; full, meant, it, ness, less, able, and en.  We introduced the sounds of au and aw while reviewing previous suffixes and some other various sound groups along the way.  We also had 6 tricky sight words to learn, which we did.

I've been asked/told to use this resource.  I know the creator put a lot of thought into it.  It's a spin off of an individualized program for word study and I'm really thinking taking something individualized and smashing more together for a whole classroom setting isn't the best idea.  These are a lot of concepts for you average seven year old to wrestle with.  So, we are jumping off the Unit 6 Week 1 Day 1 bandwagon and spending more time with spelling multi-syllable words to breathe and enjoy words.

Thank you to Two Writing Teachers for inviting teachers to write and share their writing with each other.  This community helps teachers and students grow in writing.