Monday, September 24, 2012

Mouse Traps

Today a student asked me if he could go to the bathroom. Since it was a little before 9 I said sure. Normally they wait until break but they don't usually last that long. Anyways, off he went. He also came to school with 5 mosquito bites on one arm so he was going to put some slave on them while he was in the bathroom. A minute late he came back in because the bathroom door was locked. I sent him the "big-kid" bathroom at the other end of the school (it's really not as far as it sound). He was gone a tad longer than normal when another teacher came in wondering why he was down there. I explained that the door was locked and thanked her for her concern. Pretty soon he cam back in wondering,
"Can you could unlock the bathroom by us.?"
"Did you go in the "big-kid" bathroom."
"Well, why not? You have been gone quite a while and wasted a lot of time."
"There are mouse traps in that bathroom."
 Okaaaay, I thought to myself....
"Well, do you think they will "get" you??"
 "No, but I was worried that I might accidentally drop my salve on one of them and it would go off."
^direct quote from this concerned little man
 I unlocked the bathroom and laughed to myself as I walked back to my classroom.

                                                                                  ~Miss Kelley

Thursday, September 20, 2012



This past week we have been dealing with 2-3 digit subtraction in the 3rd grade. Things were plugging along quite nicely with problems such as 38 - 9 where they had to cross out the 8 and make it 18 because you took a 10 from the 3, then they cross out the 3 and make it a 2 because they used it to make 18. So the answer would be 29.  Easy.

3 digits- Not So Easy.

On we moved to problems such as 205 - 136. so we start at the ones place. We cross out the 5 and make it a 15. then we cross out the 0 and make it a 10. Then we cross out the 2 and make it a 1 because we took it to make the 10. Then we had to go back and cross out the 10 and make it a 9 because we renamed it to make 15. (If you don't understand, my brain is a bit fried from explaining it so much) The answer would be 69. Sound easy, right? But for the life of them, they could not understand the concept of going all the way over to the hundreds place to rename the tens place when needed. AND they need to cross out the 10 to make a 9 when needed. Then they started renaming numbers when they didn't need poor, Math-hindered brain was frustrated. Yes, I admit it. Not frustrated at them, but frustrated because I wasn't explaining it in a way so that they could  understand it. Frustrated, because I felt like a failure. 

So, we fixed the incorrect problems, and started over. 

We did two extra "made-up" pages during the week and yesterday, they did their chapter reviews. To my shock, the most anyone missed was 5. Compared to like 12 on Tuesday. YAY. I was still apprehensive as they took their test today, praying they would understand the concept so that they could miss less than 5 on their tests. 

I scored the tests................................................................................................

And to my delight, and relief, the lowest grade was a 87% or 89%, I don't remember. CAN I GET A FIST BUMP?? I was floored. The extra time spent reviewing the concepts paid off. I believe 4 of them even scored 100%!! Praise God. I knew this day would come, when teaching something would be a challenge and would need extra review. I learned again, how much a I need God's help on a day-to-day basis.  I give Him the glory. It was not me who got into their heads and made them understand it. The dots connected. The lights went on. And the message went through. I need Him every day.

                                                                                        Your new subtraction expert,
                                                                                                       Miss Kelley 

On a completely unrelated note, I can't wait to pack Good&Evil books tomorrow night, sew with friends and go to the Chicken BBQ on Saturday, and go to Youngfolks Sunday. I love weekends.

Friday, September 14, 2012


I enjoy my weekends more now than I did when I was actually a student. Ahhhh....I'm sitting in a LazyBoy with the foot-rest up trying to literarily (is that a word?) convey to you my deep appreciation for the weekends. I might be slightly insane...
...I admit it...
...for attempting to take a History 102 class on Thursday nights from 630-930. Trying to focus on learning instead of teaching is something to get used to! But since I love history so much, I think it will turn out ok. I mean, do you know what was the downfall of Andrew Johnson's Presidency? The only reason Johnson wasn't assassinated with Lincoln is because their wives couldn't stand each other and Johnson and his wife didn't go to Ford's theater that night? That there were at one time 3 fractions in the Republican Party? Oh, I love learning obscure facts that the general public doesn't know. I'll stop with the random tidbits. For now. As my high school English/History teacher would say, "Now, if the lady behind you in line at WalMart taps me on the shoulder and asks yme what the three parts of the Republican Party were in 1868 were, I will be able to tell her."

Republican Party....that reminds of my girls told me the other day that she was going to send a letter to President Obama. I asked her what she was going to say, and she said that she didn't know. Then a boy said he was going to send Mitt Romney a letter if he got elected. much are you supposed to discuss politics with 3-4 graders? I am sometime too involved/educated about politics, but I don't think it's bad to be informed. It is very comforting to know that God will put into power the man He sees fit, the man who He wants there. And we don't need to worry. Although at times, it is hard to when our leaders are openly trampling over anything moral and godly, forbidding any reference to God, or declaring that our country doesn't have Christian roots. Excuse me, but maybe you need to take a History 101 class. Even secular historians realize this fact. Anyways...I feel relieved that I don't have to make a decision who to vote for. God will take care of that. Praying for whoever God places as head of our country is our duty. I learned three things in high school about our "civil duties":
Pray- for our leaders, no matter the party they represent.
Pay- our taxes.
Obey- the laws unless they contradict God's Word.

Another thing I realized this week is that, if I calculated correctly, my students were not alive when the events of September 11, 2001 occurred. That made me feel old. I was alive and well and remember all too well getting news of the attacks and watching the news on tv. Each year I remember it and all the people who lost a loved one. And I say a prayer. They are gone, but never forgotten in my mind. I also remember the day we got news of Osama bin Laden's death, the mastermind behind those attacks. As an American, I felt relief that he was dead, no longer able to coordinate terrorist attacks. As a Christian, I wondered where his soul was spending eternity. In heaven with his promised 7 virgins, or in the pit of hell. Or did he come to know the saving power of Christ and claim it for his own? In God's eyes, we are all the same. It doesn't matter how "bad" we are. If we haven't accepted the saving grace through Christ's blood, we aren't spending eternity with Him.
Prayer. Sometimes it's the only thing we can do.

                                                Hoping to stay awake through singing tonight,
                                                                                                Miss Kelley

Saturday, September 8, 2012


Yes. Everyday I get home from school and I'm tired. Not tired of the kids, but just just plain tired. Like my brain is tired and my feet are tired and my legs are tired and my eyes are tired and and and...then on Thursday nights from 6:30-9:30 I go to History 102 at MJC, but that's for later.

So that 3-day weekend we had over Labor Day was wonderful! I was able to help do some things at home and get caught up on sleep since my wonderful Mommy let me sleep in!! :) I also made a long-overdue visit to the library! The ladies in there always give me funny looks when I walk out with 10-15 books piled high in my arms. I just tell them I probably won't be back anytime in the very-near future. Lol.
Thank-goodness they let us have the books for 4 weeks!

I keep thinking that one of these weeks I won't be So. Totally. Completely. Exhausted. By the time Friday rolls around. So far, that hasn't happened. But the plus side to being that tired is I never have to worry about falling asleep or not sleeping well. Believe me, when your brain is tired and you crawl in bed (at least by 10pm), it's blissful REM cycles. Until the alarm blares at 5:45 the next morning. It receives a scowl from me each morning. I am realizing the priceless value of sleep. Keeping up with 11 kids each day is tiring. That's all their is to it. You have to be always one step ahead of them. Anticipate their questions. Listen to their questions. Formulate an answer. Make sure the way you articulate it will make sense to them. All day for 5 days of the week.

I still love it though! 

No worries there. I call it a "good tired." I have "found my niche." Although teaching Math is giving me quite the challenge to figure out how to explain it so they all understand it. I am also very thankful for all the supporting people I have in my life. My mom is priceless, but I haven't convinced her to pack my lunches yet. My fellow teachers- I love eating lunch with them. My cousins. My cousins' girls. My dad and brother(even though he doesn't always see things from a teacher's point of view). My family. My students' parents. My friends. My cell phone.

                                                                            Sad that the weekend is almost over,

                                                                                                           Miss Kelley
                                      (Hope you had/have a great weekend)