Mrs. Landry's Land of Learning

A place dedicated to learning for ALL students!

I wasn’t born here…

…but I got here as quick as I could!  Yes I am proud to be a Texas teacher and a Texas teacher blogger!  To show it (and help connect with other great Texas teacher blogs), I’m linking up with Fifth in the Middle on her Blogs by State network.  Click the button below to be connected to other great Texas teacher blogs!  Not from Texas?  No problem!  She’s working to get all 50 states and then some connected!  Search through and find your home!

Happy Teaching!

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Still kicking over here!

Hello!  I’m back!  So sorry!  I moved.  Yep.  We’re back in the house.  Thank goodness.  The apartment was about to drive us crazy.  But now it’s been issues with getting unpacked, finding our stuff, and fighting with the contractor to get some fixes done.  To anyone who does construction for a living…bless you.  I could never do the job.  Thankfully my husband is more than willing to do the arguing.  So needless to say I’ve been busy.

School didn’t stop for me just because I moved (although I did take 2 days off to get our stuff to the house).  We did a Dr. Seuss unit (can I say that?!) and had Stick Horse Rodeo (so cute!).  Yes I live in Texas.  🙂  I thought about trying to do a bunch of posts to catch things up.  But right now that’s a little too overwhelming to sort out.  So I”ll just pick up right here and keep going.  Keep moving forward, right?

Okay so this morning is my first day back from Spring Break.  I had a great time cleaning the house and trying to put it back together.  Yes I really did.  Throw in a night at the Houston Rodeo (Jake Owen was awesome!) and some good quality time with my little one and it was a great week.  We finished it off Saturday with some family time and getting to visit with our niece and new nephew.  He’s so cute!

So today I’m back in my room.  Things are not quite the same in so many ways.  You see before I left for Spring Break I did something.  Something that I had been itching to do for the past several weeks.  I rearranged my room.  Now I know y’all haven’t seen what my room was before.  So here is what I started the year out with:

Okay not bad.  I liked it.  But I had 2 whole group areas.  One in front of the calendar that I used in the morning.  The other in front of the word wall and big book stand.  While it worked for a time, I was itching to have my whole group be in one place and to be able to use my whiteboard even with the kiddos on the floor.  So I came up with this:

I’m excited to see how this works out!  Now as you can see I’m not done.  The blank chalk board will become my word wall.  I’ve also got to relabel where the kiddos go for stations.  But now I’m excited for the rest of the school year!  I’ve been recharged!  Nothing like a little spring cleaning to reset things.  😉  I’ll keep y’all posted as to how it works out as well as pictures of the finished product.  Tomorrow I’m hoping to share what I’m doing in stations this week.  I’m almost done getting that post organized.

Happy Teaching!

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Another first!!!!

Okay so wow!  I can’t believe I get to type this…I’ve been nominated for an award!  Stephanie at Hands on Happiness has nominated me for the Liebster Award!  I cannot say how truly honored I am for this!  This is for new blogs with less than 200 followers.  It’s a fabulous way to help other new blogs get themselves known and share more about themselves.  So here it is… The Liebster Award:

Rules:

  1. You must post 11 random things about yourself.
  2. You need to answer the questions that the nominator asks.
  3. Create 11 questions for the people you nominate.
  4. Choose 11 other blogs you love with fewer than 200 followers to nominate and link them in your post.
  5. You cannot “tag back” the other blog, but leave a comment on this post with the URL of your Liebster post so I can learn more about you and see who you nominate.
11 random things about Mrs. Landry:
  1. I love to sing.
  2. I was raised on computers.
  3. I met and talked with the actress Melanie Griffith.
  4. I play the flute.
  5. I have lived in 5 different states and one country across the Atlantic.
  6. I have taught 2nd and 1st grades.
  7. I am so excited about iPads slowly coming into my school!
  8. I have an ongoing love affair with chocolate.
  9. I am right handed.
  10. I had a small (very small) role in a German tv movie special.
  11. I ran cross country in high school.

Questions from Stephanie:

  1. When does your teaching day start and end? How late do you usually stay?  Our official time is 7:30 (kids start coming to the rooms at 7:45) to 4 (dismissal is at 3:30).  I usually stay until 5.  I have to have my room ready for the next day.  It’s a small obsession of mine.  I’ve been known to be past 5.
  2. Who is your favorite author, either in your classroom or for reading on your own?  Reading on my own- Nora Roberts or her penname J.D. Robb.  In the classroom- Mary Pope Osborne.
  3. Who would you most like to meet, either living or dead?  Pope John Paul II.
  4. Who inspires you?  My husband and my daughter.
  5. What is your favorite type of food to eat?  Italian when it’s not chocolate.
  6. What is the hardest part of teaching for you?  Watching my babies struggle.
  7. What is the best vacation you have ever been on?  A cruise to the Bahamas with my husband- our honeymoon!  🙂
  8. Where would you most like to visit and why?  I would love to take my husband and daughter to Germany to show them all the places I lived and what I got to experience while there.
  9. What hobbies do you enjoy?  Reading, listening to music, singing, running, scrapbooking.
  10. What is your favorite movie?  Ever After.
  11. What is the best part of teaching?  Watching a student suddenly click with something and then soar with success!

My questions for you:

  1. What is your favorite color?
  2. Why did you become a teacher blogger?
  3. If you could go anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?
  4. What inspires you about teaching?
  5. Was there a teacher who inspired you while in school?  Who?
  6. If you could change one thing about teaching, what would it be?  Why?
  7. What is your favorite dessert?
  8. What are you doing when you are not teaching?
  9. What is your favorite tv show?
  10. What is your favorite holiday?
  11. What is something in your classroom that you can’t live without?

Blogs I have nominated for this award:

Mrs. Ridgley’s Class Blog

Teaming Up to Teach

Shaking It Up in 1st Grade

The First Grade ELL Jungle

First Grade Friends

Not Just Any Teacher

First Grade Escapades

Mrs. A-Colwell’s Class

Congratulations to all of you!  Please leave a comment below with a link to your Liebster post so I can find out more about y’all!

Happy Teaching!

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These are a few of my unfavorite things…

Okay yes I’m still alive.  Yes I wanted to post way sooner.  But between packing, grading, and benchmark testing I haven’t been able to tell you which end is up.  But it has gotten better…I think.  😉

So why unfavorite things?  Why not my favorite things?  Well I’ll tell you.  I love what I do.  I love working with each of my little friends no matter what and I would not trade it for anything.  I really do feel that I’m doing exactly what was intended and anyone that knows me personally would agree (I hope!).  But that doesn’t mean it’s all daisies and sunshine.  Since I found the world of teacher blogs, I’ve actually been encouraged by the posts that show other teachers dealing with the exact same struggles as myself and those I work with.  I think, sometimes, we start to feel isolated within our campus, grade level, or our own classroom.  We forget that we are not alone in working with these babies and the difficulties that accompanies this huge task.  But it’s not really the struggles mentioned in these posts that touches me the most.  It’s the determination behind them.  It’s the “I WILL succeed!” you feel as you read and watch these amazing people decide to go past the struggles.  So let me start my list with the task that inspired me…

  1. Sharpening pencils.  Holy moly do I hate doing it.  But frankly it’s the only way they get done.  I couldn’t trust my second grade babies with an electric sharpener so I certainly can do that with my firsties.  Especially with pencils that have the really fun prints because that’s not paint.  Oh no.  That’s some type of paper covering that tears up any pencil sharpener known to man.  This leads me to…
  2. Pencils that don’t work.  What could I possibly mean by that if I’m sharpening them?  Well the pencils mentioned above I don’t even sharpen at all.  I tell my kids take them home and use them there  for special things.  This way I’m not hurting any feelings.  But some do press for a better explanation and I honestly tell them why and they do understand.  Now last year there was this one particular brand of pencils that, when you’re sharpening them, the lead would break inside the pencil and just slide right out.  No joke.  You’d be sharpening, thinking all is good, when you hear, “Click”.  That “click” wasn’t the sharpener.  It was the lead breaking.  I went through so many pencils trying to get them sharpened.  One day I caused my sharpener to burn out!  Okay on to something else…
  3. Absent kids.  I don’t want them to get sick as that’s no fun.  But I really don’t like dealing with the make-up work that follows.  There is no time in the schedule to go back and reteach those lessons.  I have to hope they get it in the 30 second version.  Not easy.  Next would be…
  4. Shoes.  Not my shoes.  If you know me then you would know I LOVE shoes.  My husband tries to understand my condition but it’s really hopeless…but I digress!  I hate tying shoe laces.  Only because chances are they’ve been in a mouth as well as dragged all over every floor between my room and their house.  G-R-O-S-S!
  5. Jackets.  This is a recent thing because I’ve almost slipped on a couple this year and it’s only October!  Goodness me!  They are working on it though and it’s already better.  This will soon go away.  🙂
  6. Papers.  It’s so tough grading them and shuffling them from the Finished Work bucket to their mailboxes (although I’m fortunate to have an aide help me with that part!).  I especially dislike the ones that give me paper cuts!
  7. Frustration.  I don’t mean mine.  I mean my  in  my babies.  My little darlings who try so hard and still can’t seem to grasp a concept.  I’m desperately trying to help them reach that goal.  But I have to brag.  I’ve got some hard workers with great determination.  No matter what I ask them to do, regardless of if they can do it or not, they try hard.  I can’t ask for anything more.  It makes me work harder to help them get over those hurdles.  But it also makes seeing their frustration that much more painful.  Sigh…It’s a never-ending cycle…
  8. Not having that magic wand.  Y’all know what I’m talking about.  That magic wand they haven’t invented yet.  The one that, when you wave it, everything is better.  All the boo boos, head aches, tummy aches, and any other ailments are better and all students are happily learning.  I think they’re supposed to come out with a parent model as well.  I’m on the waiting list.  I wish they would hurry up.
  9. The bathroom.  It’s just far enough that I can’t always hear what’s going on.  It’s a place where so many get into trouble.  How many times have my doormate and I said they should rebuild our campus with a small bathroom shared between 2 rooms?  We wouldn’t have to have set bathroom times.  They could just go and be right there with us at all times.  Oh if we only lived in a perfect world!
  10. Uncertainty.  This is on my part.  Haven’t you wondered and thought, “Did I do enough for that student/class?”  I do a lot.  Sometimes I’m able to boost myself up with just enough of a yes as shown by evidence.  Other times the answer may be no for a multitude of reasons.  other times I truly don’t know.  This is  one of those things that makes me work harder each day.  I’ve just had to learn not to go overboard and forget I have a family too.

So there you have it.  My current unfavorite things.  Or at least the top 10.  But for each one of those, there are several favorite things.  Those favorite things are great to reflect on and recharge my batteries.  Chocolate just helps speed that along.  😉  Now that I’ve gotten that out, it’s time to move forward.  I’m hoping to bury these unfavorite things under a year filled with learning, hard work, laughter, growth, and smiles.  And you know what?  It’s already started!  🙂

So what are your unfavorite things?  Anything unusual?  Let’s air them out!  After that we can eat chocolate.  🙂  (Can you tell I’m in a smiley face mood?)

Happy Teaching!

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