Tuesday, 24 July 2012

100 word challenge week 51

I haven't had much time these last few weeks with the end of term craziness that all teachers will be familiar with. 
And now summer has finally arrived and I am sitting in the garden, shaded by the parasol with the hum of bees in the fuchsia beside me, two contented cats sprawled out on the patio, a cloudless blue sky, a gentle breeze and a glass of Pimms  water (it's only just after four in the afternoon; far too early for that just yet!) by my side. 
I have just about managed to resist rereading my campnanowrimo piece just yet- leaving it for a while longer before some major editing and maybe then I will share some here as I would love some feedback.
I am very lucky to be heading off to the Dordogne at the end of the week- surrounded by vineyards and no wifi to be found. I have a notebook ready for writing in while I am away in between the pile of books I plan to read...
This week's prompt from Julia was …. the line was drawn …. 

Here is my contribution. Thanks for reading. Comments, as always, welcomed :)

You said what?

He stopped as though someone had pressed pause. His fork hovered between plate and mouth, spaghetti strands unwinding in slow motion before rejoining the others.
“You’re what?” he spluttered.
“You heard. I’m leaving.”
“You can’t. You’re nothing without me.” he placed his fork on the table adjusting it until it was at precisely 90 degrees to the table’s edge.
“It’s over.” she pushed the piece of paper across the table. He picked it up to see the line was drawn through their surname.
As she walked towards the door she ran her hand along the
 row of perfectly aligned pictures leaving each one askew.

Read the others at http://www.linkytools.com/wordpress_list.aspx?id=155445&type=basic

Monday, 9 July 2012

Challenges of the job...

As the end of the summer approaches and the final words are added to the end of year reports it is time to look back at the year and start to think ahead to the next.

This has been the first year since qualifying (back in '91- last century !) that I have shared a class as a part time teacher. I teach 3 days each week (Wed-Fri) and I can honestly say that making the decision to go part time was definitely one of the best decisions I have ever made. It has renewed my enthusiasm for the job no end as well as giving me time to pursue my own interests and passions, some of which have enhanced my teaching , others have just made me a happier person! (and as a result a happier teacher!)

This year I have taught a mixed year 4 /5 class and will be doing the same next year. All the year 4's will stay with us to be joined by the rest of the year 4s along with some year 3's taking us to 35 in total (ratio 2:1 year 5:4)

Inevitably there have been questions raised by parents about this; it will be a challenging year. But every single class is challenging!
I read a blog the other day about class sizes http://www.manchestersalon.org.uk/does-class-size-matter.html and also http://drwilda.wordpress.com/2012/01/30/battle-of-the-studies-does-class-size-matter/
There seems to be little evidence one way or the other.
I have taught a class of 18 year 3's and found it frustrating to have that number of children because discussions and group work lacked the spark you have with a larger class. That said, the idea of marking all those books , writing all the reports and seeing all the parents will have its challenges! Peer marking and teaching the children how to work with high levels of independence will feature strongly I have no doubt!

Those children who will be remaining in our class for the next academic year start off at an advantage I feel as they already know the routines of the class and will be able to help the others settle in and find their feet. Children who will be moving onto a new class having spent their Y4 and 5 in our class have all made significant progress this year (3 sub levels for 6 out of the seven in reading  all bar one with SpLD two sub levels in maths and writing ) with the greatest progress being in their confidence and willingness to have a go.

I think that it is a privilege to be able to "keep" some children for more than one year- I once followed a whole class through from year 4 to 5 and it was definitely one of the most successful experiences I have had so far.

I'd be very interested in any responses re. children staying in classes.

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

100 words week 48

This week the prompt is

'I blamed it on the dog'


Having pretty much finished my end of year reports (yeah) and my 50K (whoopee) thought I'd do this week's.
Check out the rest at http://www.linkytools.com/wordpress_list.aspx?id=152359&type=basic


“I’ll be home by seven!” You’d promised. You were gone before I’d made it out of bed. Yawning,  I went downstairs to make myself a cup of tea, hoping that you might have left me at least a clue that you’d remembered.
Not strictly true; one dirty mug on the table.
I waited in all day just in case.
Seven o’clock came and went. The lovingly prepared meal scraped into the bin, the wine drunk.
Eight O’clock...
Nine O’clock...
Half past nine, “Sorry I’m late. What’s for tea?”
I blamed it on the dog as I headed for the stairs and ripped the card in two.