First day

My emotions about starting school went from wanting it to start yesterday and to get in and get my hands dirty, to utter dread. I was so nervous and just lost all interest in it all together. 

My first official day at the school was on Wednesday (23rd January). I met all of the staff and they were just lovely. I felt a little caught in the middle though. I was in a room full of lovely people, who are so kind, but they did not know me at all. They were all so excited to see each other and I was caught in between conversations they had with each other, that I knew nothing about. So many people came up to me and introduced myself which I was so grateful for, however, I cannot remember the last time I was in a room, being the only new person. That’s who I am, the new girl. Being quite young (in comparison to the people in the room), I also felt like I had to prove myself a little, as I just felt so out of place. 

Recently, I found the TED app for my iPad. I am HOOKED on watching the speakers, I really am. This video, 

Amy Cuddy: Your body language shapes who you are 

is what significantly changed that mindset. Watch it, it will get you thinking, and you’ll understand this next part. 

Before I went to school on Friday, I stood in the mirror and acted out the ‘power’ poses. I stood with my arms in the air, as I ate my breakfast, I sat relaxed and opened, not hunched over the table, scooping up my muesli and drinking my coffee. 

Wow. I joined in on conversations. I asked more questions. I approached new people and said, ‘Everyone seems to know my name but I haven’t met you properly yet, what grade do you teach?’ I got a little angry with myself as I worked in retail for years and had to walk up to strangers on a daily basis and find out all sorts of things about them. In that environment, though, I ‘owned’ the space, it was ‘mine’ and they were ‘guests’. In this environment, while I am not a ‘guest’ and I work there just as much as my colleagues, I’m not familiar and they have a very tight-knit community.

Either way, that video made me think about how I was presenting myself. As Amy Cuddy says, you don’t need to have the same body language all the time, it’s more about having the body language for a short while to trick your brain a little. 

I am proud to say that Amy was right. “Our bodies change our minds, and our minds can change our behavior, and our behavior can change our outcomes.”

I think for a little while longer I will need to keep up these ‘power poses’. 

Stay tuned for photos of my classroom!

Jemma

Literacy stations

I am currently in the process of getting my head around literacy activities for Grade One. The school I am at follows the ‘Magic Words’ sight word lists (new to me) so am in the process of familiarising myself with them and creating activities based on these words (to work within the literacy program). 

 

I just discovered this blog, Mrs. Kelly’s Kindergarten, Another Round of Literacy Work Stations, online and am stealing a few ideas. 

 

Any literacy work activities that you use in your classroom that you’d like to share?

Classroom preparation (part one of what I think will be many!)

So the Christmas rush is over, my partner and I have secured a rental apartment for 2013 and we move in just under two weeks! I’ve packed just about everything that needs to be packed and am now onto arranging resources for our classroom next year.

I have had lots of ‘First day of school’ anxiety and questions that have popped up all of a sudden so have tried to be really proactive.

On K-3 Teacher Resources I have found so many useful resources. I paid about $25 for a year’s membership and it’s come in handy a whole lot. I downloaded a huge puzzle with 30 pieces in it. They are blank pieces for the children and I to decorate to put together as a whole-class puzzle. I will have 23 in my class, and I’ll make 24. Ideally, I’d like the children to think of 6 things we need to do so that the class can work together well. I’ll group the children to work on the last six pieces together so that they’re decorated. I think that will make a great first day activity for us to work on.

I’ve also seen on Pinterest, a treasure hunt to work through for all of the school supplies. I like the idea of that as it makes it a bit of a game and the children can collect ‘treasure’. I’m working on the list I’ve been given that they’ll have and how we can make it a fun experience!

How do you work your first day of school?

Regards
Jemma

Photos from my graduation December 2012

DSCN0359 Receiving my  Diploma from the Chancellor of QUT

DSCN0360 My Grandmother and I

DSCN0377  This is me!

DSCN0375 As per tradition.

DSCN0372 My Mum and I

DSCN0364 I love to laugh.

DSCN0362 My beloved and I. He is very special to me.

Six years of study all went into this moment. So pleased to have finished and received the piece of paper to say I am a qualified teacher! One of the happiest days of my life.

First

This blog will hopefully take you on a journey of my trials and tribulations, excitement, blood, sweat and tears and joys of my first year of teaching.

I have just graduated university in Brisbane, Queensland (Australia) and am working in a Catholic school south of Brisbane. I am teaching Grade One (six year olds). I’ve not taught Grade One before. I have taught Prep and Grade Three. I am currently teaching in a Grade Two classroom two days per week, but it is the final weeks of the school year, so really it’s safe to say I don’t know a whole lot about Grade Two that could help me with Grade One!

Knowing where children will be coming from (Prep classrooms), will be a huge help to me.

I have included a photo of myself so you know what I look like as we start this journey together!

Reply, make suggestions and ask questions of my practice and I if you wish!

JemmaImage