Welcome!

Welcome to my blog!! Thank you so much for stopping by. Please visit the about tab to find out more about me.

I am still figuring this all out and so you will probably see changes from time to time (and keeping it fresh!). Please feel free to leave suggestions and/or comments. I am always looking for new ways to make my blog better, as well as more interesting.

Enjoy!

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Explaining other holidays…

It was the Friday before Christmas and this was a conversation that I had with one of my students

Student: What is this? (Holding up a picture of a Hanukkah candlestick)

Me: It’s a Hanukkah candlestick

Student: What does this have to do with Christmas?

Me: Hanukkah is a holiday that is celebrated around Christmas by some people

Student: People who don’t celebrate Christmas hate Jesus.

Me: That isn’t true. People can celebrate other holidays and not celebrate Christmas but that doesn’t mean they hate Jesus.

Student: Who celebrates Hanukkah?

Me: People of the Jewish religion.

Student: They hate Jesus.

Me: No, many of the Jewish people do not believe that Jesus is God.

Student: Well they killed Jesus..oh wait its ok they killed a white man.

 

Excuse me?!?! Being that this student is in the 5th grade, I am thinking there is only one place that I can think of that this is being said…in the home. I get that America hasn’t always treated people correctly but when can we get passed the past?? As a country, we have been trying to make up our mistreatment to the African Americans, Native Americans, Japanese Americans and who knows who else.. As one of the “white people”, I’ve not nothing against any of these groups of people. I do my best to show respect for everyone until they do something to lose my respect. As adults, it is our responsibility to teach the children to respect all ethnicities  BUT the parents need to support this as well. I honestly am tired of hearing how racist white people are.

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Testing

Any other teacher or parents get tired of all the testing we have for the students? Three times a year the students take Discovery (math and reading) and Achieve (math and reading). Then there is state testing at the end of the year not to mention the weekly tests and the STAR math, STAR Reading and SRI (Scholastic Reading Inventory) that is done about once a month.

I know that it is great for the students to see their improvements throughout the year but all this testing is exhausting!!!

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Holiday Traditions

So the holidays are approaching and it is my favorite time of the year. Not because of the presents and the time off work (although I do love the time off work!!) but because of the time I get to spend with my family. This time of year is all about family to me. I think back about our traditions we do or did every year.

I think my favorite tradition was listening to the Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens on the radio every Christmas Eve. We would all sit in the living room with the radio on, doing a puzzle or just sitting, and listen. We did not grow up with a TV in our home so we never watched it.

What is one of your favorite traditions during the holidays? I would love to hear them 🙂

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And they say we are racists…

Ok, so I am a bit perturbed. Allow me to start off by saying my mom NEVER raised us to be racist. If we made a derogatory remark to anyone regarding their race, we were in huge trouble.

Here’s the story and why I am so not happy.

I am married to a Navajo (Native American Indian) and teach at a school that is about 99% Navajo. My students are great students and I don’t have any problems with them. We were talking today about Monday being Veterans Day and that we need to honor people who served in the military because they chose to do this and were not forced to. Anyway after class was over, one girl comes to me telling me that her uncle was in the military and that he is dead. I asked her if he died while he was in the military. She responded with no and that he died in a plane crash. She proceeded to tell me that in her culture that bad things happen to Navajo’s when they marry a white person.

REALLY!?!? That is NOT ok to tell your children. What if I adopted a child and told them not to marry Native Americans or Hispanics or African Americans or whatever? I would be told, again, that I am a racist. I hear it from my husband that white people in our area are racist, and this probably has been true in the past and still some today. But this has to stop somewhere….that somewhere is in the home.

Another example of racism, non Native American this time, is when my nephew was in elementary school. One of the students who was half African American and half white (if I remember correctly) told my nephew that he should kill him because he was white.

We would love to believe that racism doesn’t exist anymore, that we all get along and everything is all lovey dovey….it isn’t. The ONLY way this changes is to teach our children that just because someone believes a little different doesn’t make them bad. I’m not saying we have to “accept” everyone, because we don’t. We do need to tolerate their beliefs and respect them. We don’t need to teach them to hate people because of the past or because of their beliefs. Be a parent….teach YOUR kids.

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Daily Prompt: Pep Rally

My husband always tells me if you put your mind to it you can do it. Don’t limit yourself. Trust your abilities and trust that God will not abandon you if you ask for help. Don’t give up. A speaker at our school district asked us if we knew how 409 got its name. He proceeded to tell us that it took the creators 409 times to come up with the right formula. Remember Apple/Macintosh started in a garage by teenagers. Just because it is difficult doesn’t mean it is impossible. Keep trying, you can achieve your goal!!Image

 

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Daily Prompt: Seven Wonders

Khalil Gibran once said that people will never understand one another unless language is reduced to seven words. What would your seven words be?

A question that cannot be answered easily. How does one express everything in seven words? Some of the first words that came to my mind are more of feelings and actions. So what seven words would I pick?

1. Friend – I picked friend mainly because just saying the word friend, a person can think of many people throughout their life who have been a true friend at one time or another.

2. Sorry – the hardest word anyone ever has to say and a word that some people won’t say. It humbles a person.

3. Forgiven – probably the second hardest word to say. We like revenge.

4. Hi/Hello – many things can be said in this one simple word.

5. Me – got to have something to describe myself!

6. You – just so you know I am talking to you 😀

7. Help – what no one ever wants to admit needing but something we all need!

 

No doubt there are other words that are probably better than what I’ve come up with! I did think about Yes and No but we have actions for those and don’t really need the words to say it.

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Where does the customs of Halloween come from?

I did a little research to answer this question and found it to be interesting. Many times we accept traditions without knowing or caring to know how and why they started.

Origins of Halloween

It is believed that Halloween originated with a Celtic festival called Samhain celebrated on October 31st. This was a festival where the people would dress up in costumes to ward off evil spirits.

The Celts believed that on October 31st the spirits of the dead returned to earth. They also believed that aside from damaging crops and causing problems, the spirits, or ghosts, help the Druids make predictions about the future (also know as witch craft). The Celts would wear animal heads as part of their costumes and attempt to tell each others fortune.

The Romans added their traditions into this mix from two different festivals. One is a festival honoring the passing of the dead and another festival to the goddess of fruit and trees, introducing bobbing for apples as part of the October 31st celebrations.

Pope Boniface IV decided to honor all Christian martyrs, which was later expanded into including al

l saints by Pope Gregory III and moved from May to November 1st, which is now known as All Saints Day. All Saints Day was also called All-Hallows Day. This made the day before All-Hallows Eve, which is now commonly known as Halloween. The Catholic church also added November 2nd as All Souls day to honor the dead to replace the Celts Samhian festival.halloween

Halloween slowly came to American (Mostly to the south-east due to heavy Protestant beliefs in the north-east) and mixed with Native American cultures. A more distinct tradition began to form. These traditions were celebrations of harvest that included ghost stories, music, dancing, fortune-telling and mischief-making.

The increase of immigration due to the potato famine in Ireland, helped nationalize Halloween.

Americans began dressing up and going door to door for food and money. Later, people wanted Halloween to be more about community and being neighborly than about witchcraft, ghosts and trouble making. Parents were pressing the newspapers to take out anything spooky and gory. This was when Halloween began losing its superstitions

Years ago, instead of handing out candy, people would put food and wine out to keep the ghosts of the dead happy. Mostly, Halloween today is celebrated as families walk from house to house to get treats. Kids dress up on a range of costumes from angels to monsters, from funny to scary and anything else in between.

candy

How much to you think American’s spend each year on candy for Halloween? Do you participate in either trick-or-treating or handing out candy? Do you know the origins of jack-o-lanterns?

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Drawing Lines

I wanted to put a question to you all but first allow me to set the stage.

A fellow teacher and I were talking after school earlier this week and he was telling me about his daughter, who is in high school, being assigned a book to read on incest and rape. Apparently, this book goes in to graphic detail. I was appalled that this was allowed. He continued on saying that the teacher told his wife that she doesn’t have any say about this.

Where do you draw the line? What about “alternative lifestyle awareness”? Should this be promoted in public school? What should be parent responsibility and what should be school’s responsibility?

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Weekly Photo Challenge – Infinity

Weekly Photo Challenge - Infinity

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October 12, 2013 · 12:35 am