Slow progress

Well…yesterday I didn’t get any painting done.  I tried, but the paint wouldn’t stick.  At first I thought maybe there was something wrong with the paint, but then as I thought about it more…I realized it was most likely because it was so humid yesterday.  It was like 85% humidity…and I have never had this happen before…but the paint just slid off.  It wouldn’t adhere at all.  So I washed off what I had tried to paint and went home.  When I got home, baby Jasmin was just about ready for a nap.  PERFECT!  We cuddled up together and had a wonderful nap.  Then we got up and got ready and went out to pick up Sam and We headed up towards Lansing.  Yesterday was our anniversary. 15 Years!  We dropped off baby Jasmin at Sam’s sister’s and had a great evening.  We ate at Red Lobster, hung out at the bookstore for a while and then went to see Get Smart.  Funny movie!  We had a great time.

So I am off to paint this morning.  I am hoping I do not have to deal with any more paint issues…’cause I have a timeline for this…and it doesn’t allow for days without painting.

The Last 2 Weeks

Wow! It’s been a crazy couple of weeks! School got out on Tuesday – the 10th. It was a great day! Wednesday we had professional development and had a blast on the last day with Mr. Bosio, our principal who is retiring. Thursday, I went to school with Savannah and Max because they had field day. We had a great time. Friday I spent the day cleaning my rooms and moving stuff to the other building (where I will be teaching at next year). Savannah came along to help and also, Heather, my SAU student who has been helping me out so much this semester. She was awesome! I will miss her. We got everything done by 3:30! Which is amazing…for all that had to be done. Saturday we drove up to Sundance and bought our new truck and then hurried back for Max’s birthday party/father’s day celebration with Sam’s dad. We ended up waiting in the Sundance lounge for about an hour! The kids were complaining – and I don’t blame them…the air conditioning was broken and there was nothing interesting in the lounge except a popcorn maker that popped us some free popcorn. I finally asked the secretary for some paper and pen so the kids could draw…but I ended up drawing this picture of baby Jasmin sitting on the floor with the pink hi-lighter she gave us. It was a busy day, but fun. Sunday went by way to fast! Then all week last week I had to go through MLPP training. It was pretty good and even though it took a lot of time…I am glad I had the opportunity to get that training before fall. Then this weekend, Max had a birthday party with his friends at Fun For All Kids. It was the easiest birthday party ever. Four of his little friends from his class came…the adults just sat and talked while the boys ran around and played. We had cake and Max opened presents and passed out the loot bags and then it was time for everyone to leave. It was great. Savannah spent the afternoon with her best friend, and it was just a fun day. Today was the first day for me to paint the show. We had some friends offer to let me paint it in their pole barn. It’s really nice. Good lighting, too, which is important for painting a mural. The trailer is 23 feet and there is another 4 foot piece that is going to be attached to the top. I will paint it separate and then we will attach it when it’s done. If you look at our Flickr pictures you can see the progress I made on it today. I only was there about 5 hours…and part of that time was spent washing the trailer and then taping it off. I was a little discouraged when Sam came over around 6:00…but I am feeling better about it tonight. I will not be able to paint again till Thursday, probably. Tomorrow I have to go to Hillsdale for a class and then Wednesday we take the kids to mom and dad’s for the rest of the week. They are super excited about going. We are keeping baby Jasmin with us. Jasmin will watch her during the day and then Sam at night when needed if I am painting late. We’ll see. Check back toward the end of the week. I will take my camera next time so I can get some better pics. Sorry for the crappy camera-phone picture.

Close Call

So I decided, on the way home today, as I glanced at my gas gauge that I better get some money so I can put some gas in my car. I had to make our insurance payment anyway, so I headed over to the credit union, praying that I could make it through the line, to Allstate and then to the gas station across the street. I had to wait forever in the line at the C.U. though! So I drew you a picture! You can see how empty my tank was. When I came out of Allstate and went to start up, it didn’t start the first time. I jiggled around in my seat a little (not sure if that really would help or not, but maybe it did!) and it started right up and I cruised across the street and put $50.00 worth in my tank…the sad thing is, it only filled 3/8 of my tank! That stinks!

My Job

I haven’t taken the opportunity to update you all on my job. First of all, I still have one…which is a good thing if you are a teacher in Michigan right now. Back in April, my principal at Memorial informed me that I will be teaching only at that building. For the past 9 years I have taught art half-time at both of the elementary buildings…driving back and forth. I came to East Jackson to be the elementary art teacher…never really thought I would ever do anything else…until recent years when my budget has gradually been cut from $1200 per school to $100 per school and with layoffs and stuff…I haven’t been so assured that this is what I will always do. My job next year, as it stands right now, will be teaching art only at Memorial in the morning and then teaching the afternoon kindergarten. I have been a classroom teacher before…before getting hired at East Jackson. I used to teach 4th/5th split at a charter school in Coldwater. Those were some crazy times…but such great experience for me. And now I am really glad, because I think I would feel a little lost about having a class without that experience. Not that 4th and 5th grade is anything like kindergarten. I have a lot to learn this summer…a lot to get educated about. I don’t know anything about reading levels, MLPP (I am signed up for a class this summer, though), report cards, oh my word – there is so much I am going to have to figure out. Not only that, but I really have very little for my classroom. I have some friends that are saving me stuff and my sister has a lot of things I can probably use, but I’ll still have to go through it all and figure out what I can actually use and how I am going to use it. We have no curriculum/teacher guides for kindergarten, so I have probably spent 15-20 hours already researching and visiting kindergarten sites and other educational sites to find resources for what I will teach next year in kindergarten, AND getting the GLCEs from the Department of Ed. so I can know what I actually need to be teaching. I have also observed in two classrooms.  It’s scary to think that I will have to teach these little kids so much. How to follow directions, how to stand in lines, how to listen and work independently and with groups, how to read! I hope I do a good job. I am sort of excited about the challenge…which is what I feel it is…but at the same time I am a little nervous. I think as far as teaching them, it will be a blast. I love that age…my two boys are kindergarten age…and I know it will be a lot of fun. I will enjoy being at only one building next year (the closer one – and that’s a plus with the gas prices being so high), but I know I will miss my friends at the other building, because it’s likely I will only see them a couple of times during the whole school year…and that kind of makes me sad. I will really miss my students over there. Just the other day one of my Robinson 2nd graders gave me a note that said “you fill me with art and happiness.” So cute!

The reason for the change is because the district cut the high school art hours in half…she has seniority over me and apparently there were no other openings in what else she can teach, so she is going to be doing all the art at Robinson.

The 2008 Elementary Art Show

This month was my student art show. We had over 600 works of art displayed at the Eastern Branch Library. It was an amazing site to see all the colorful works of art displayed here. I love when it’s all up and so many people have enjoyed it over the past month. I give out blue ribbons to people in our community and ask them to award it to their favorite artist. This is why some of them have the blue ribbons. These kids are standing in front of my favorite piece…but I didn’t award the ribbon. I don’t participate in that part of the show…because I think it would be a conflict of interests! Anyway…one of my students created this snow globe…it was a project that the kids did back in December…you would think that most of them would put a snowy scene, trees, a snowman…something like this. Not this kid…he dared to be different and made his snow globe about something he loves…Star Wars! Isn’t that the cutest. I also took close up pictures of several of the pieces of art on display and made up a kind of Scavenger hunt game. Here the kids have found the match with the star wars snow globe. They had a great time with it and I will probably do it again…only maybe not with so many cards. We had 42 in each set. That took way too much time.