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Rachel. Teacher. Trying to be continuously positive. Lover of Jesus, history, literature, writing, disney, giraffes, captain america, and all things adventurous. I am creative and I have an appreciation for a random assortment of things. I AGAPE Jesus, and I love life. <333

Science is not my easiest subject to teach 

Probably because of how science was taught to me. 

I am teaching plant and animal cells to my students. I remember learning about cells, and looking at diagrams of cells in text books, and then being told to look in a microscope and label the parts of a cell, and seeing something that looked NOTHING LIKE THE DIAGRAM. 

I do not want my students to have the same experience, but I cannot seem to find anything that shows images of real cells under a microscope with parts labeled.

Does anyone have any suggestions?

Got a shout out in the Monday morning memo at school. 

"One of the guest speakers was our very own, Rachel, who wowed the group. We appreciate your teacher leadership and your desire to learn more about literacy."

This comes because of the “thegrownuplife” lesson I taught to fellow teachers at my school.


A first happened today 

Today, I was asked to teach a group of about 30 teachers in my cluster, how I have been using thegrownuplife’s concrete/abstract analysis method with my students.

I was so nervous! But everyone was impressed and felt I did an excellent job. I was even asked to make a video of me doing it with my students so they could see how it is done in an elementary classroom. 

Gah, moving up in the world of my profession. Maybe after the past two years of being put down and made to feel like I was an awful teacher(from former team members), I will finally be recognized for the stuff I have been doing all along.

In case some of you didn’t know that I was a teacher based on the things I
post (it does say random in my username…), I wanted to share something with you all that I actually learned from another user on tumblr.

I teach gifted 5th grade students this year. I watched a video of
thegrownuplife modeling how she teaches her high school students to analyze text through abstract and concrete lens. I saw it, loved it, and thought,
“I bet my students could do that!” So I decided to give it a go this week.

I decided to introduce our class song with this method (On Top of the World
by Imagine Dragons). I use the class song to motivate and encourage them at various points in the year, so I thought it was a good way to introduce
this new method to them. Spoiler Alert: It was!

Long story short, this lesson went awesome! They had trouble at the
beginning when I was explaining abstract and concrete. Which was honestly a revisit because I know they learn about abstract and concrete nouns in third grade, but you know how it is with kids pretending no one has ever taught them anything. Here are some things I did to make it doable for my gifted students.

I broke the lesson into two parts. Part one was revisiting abstract/concrete and interpreting the song. Part two was filling out our chart and writing a response.

I modeled heavily. I gave lots of help and hints since they were struggling with the abstract/concrete words. However after talking to their previous teacher, I learned that she used the word infer more often. So I did a brief review on inferring using items in my purse, and we were off and rolling.

For first abstract part, I just asked for what they felt after reading and listening to the song.

We made our abstract to concrete connections. However, I knew they would have difficulty doing the concrete to abstract as thegrownuplife taught it, so I just had them refer back to those
parts of the song they were using as their evidence. They had to list those inferences they came up with in that last column.

Again I modeled writing the response as they gave ideas. I highlighted the information to match the chart, so they could see how they turned their thoughts and evidence into a written response.

I plan on modeling this method again as we read documents related to the
civil war. Eventually I hope they will be able to do this on their own.

I know I am not a well known member of the education community, I’m just
not that cool. I’m better at just observing you people. But I thought I
should let thegrownuplife know that what she shared, was utilized in
another classroom. Thanks so much for sharing it, especially since I got
observed by an administrator while I was teaching this. They were
absolutely blown away. :o)

Maybe I should share some of the crazy things I do in my classroom…mixed
in with all the reblogs of Tom Hiddleston of course.

A coworker and I are trying to figure out what actors and actresses would play everyone at our school. 

It’s the best thing ever.

Pencil sharpeners 

My classroom is in need of an awesome pencil sharpener. One that will last more than a few months.

I have seen the one that is going around the blogs from classroom friendly supplies. Does anyone use it?

Any recommendations would be appreciated!

This morning, my favorite coworker broke my dam and I cried 10 minutes before my students arrived. 

Then I cried as they were walking in because I couldn’t hold it together.
I made the teacher next door cry.

Then my students hugged me, and were nice to me for part of the day after I explained in tears why I was upset.

I think it’s a good thing for my students to realize I’m human and have feelings too.

I’m going to take a moment from my randomness to post something education related. 

I don’t post often about my classroom or school, but I need help/advice.

Have any other educators struggled with their team, or more specifically, people on their team?

My team is a dysfunctional at best, we are known as the black sheep of the school. We’ve got one teacher who refuses to change methods of collaboration because “that’s how we’ve always done it” (on top of many other things) and another who thinks they are God’s gift to education. Someone is always running to administration and tattling on what others are doing or not doing (I got called into the office today). And they are constantly brown nosing administration as well as being fake with the rest of the team.

Collaboration does not happen. Most come to meetings late and zone out. I’ve come to the point where I have given up trying. But I’m am tired of always compromising, or doing it their way since I’m tired of arguing.

Do any of you have any experience with this? I’ve asked administration for advice, but they told me they were not going to get involved. That we had to solve it. I understand they don’t want to police us (seeing as we are adults), but I feel it’s at a point they need to step in.

Any advice, thoughts, words of encouragement?

I&#8217;m sorry. I&#8217;m really proud of my outfit today.

The only thing that isn&#8217;t Old Navy (the store I work part time at) are the tights. They are from target. My necklace is from Pac sun. But I&#8217;m sure you can&#8217;t see it because my work lanyard is in the way.

I’m sorry. I’m really proud of my outfit today.

The only thing that isn’t Old Navy (the store I work part time at) are the tights. They are from target. My necklace is from Pac sun. But I’m sure you can’t see it because my work lanyard is in the way.

Guys. This is wonderful. 

Being miserable and alone all break meant I had time to do all the grading I needed to get down. So because I didn’t procrastinate, I get to have a lovely last day of break. Also, no stress because tomorrow is a teacher work day and the kids don’t get back until Thursday. Easing in baby, easing in.