Settling into my new groove

Being back at work is exhausting. I am beat at the end of the day. I would even say I'm considerably more tired than I was running after my two kids at home all day. Being at home can be exhausting in other ways, but I don't think my body dragged as much at the end of the day, nor did my eyes feel as heavy. Now don't start a working mom vs stay at home mom debate after I say this, but being a working mom is harder, FOR ME, than being a stay at home one.

I have really had a hard time motivating myself to blog in the evenings. My brain keeps swirling and Facebook seems too interesting (and believe me, it's not that interesting!). . . .

Today I was reminded that there are some ways in which grade 9 boys are exactly like 5 year old boys. In fact, I told a couple of them that they were making me feel like I was babysitting and not teaching today! Their new thing is putting garbage in each other's hoodies. Why? Why? Why?

I will say that being back at work has been great for my relationship with Hugh. I feel like I have more "real" things to talk about since I got back to teaching. I know bragging about how wonderful our kids days were was "real", but that was just telling stories. Hugh and I can actually discuss and debate things now that I am back into my groove. Even thought I hadn't realized it, I had really missed our chats about education.

I am doing a few things different in my classroom this year, including one I am really excited about. I have noticed over the years that my students have a really hard time with math vocabulary. Words like polynomial, independent variable, confidence interval, and domain basically only get used in a math class and some of them for just a few weeks at a time. Because of this, I decided to make a huge poster with all the different vocabulary on it from each unit. I add new words and concepts after each lesson. It has worked really well to review with students at the beginning of class and to make connections as we learn new content. Very quickly, I found myself pretty pumped about how it was going. I felt like I had really created something amazing to help aid student learning and 4 days into my new endeavour, I filled Hugh in on it. Turns out I am not an innovator. What I am doing is called a "word wall" and almost every elementary school classroom has at least one! Hugh used them in his room years ago when he had a grade 8 home room. Oy. I felt kind of special. Like I had invented something. Turns out there are books you can read based entirely on this concept. Ha!

For those of you who don't have kids in high school FD stands for Foundations 20 and depending how old you are is similar to Math 20 and would be a mix of Algebra and Geometry for those of you as old as me :-)

Happy Tuesday!


  1. Lol, thank you for reading my "what's FD?" brain. Math 20. Got it. ;)

    And yes, word walls are FABULOUS. BUt I think you've done a great job of creating one that is meaningful and current for your students! Nicely done! :)

    I can't imagine the energy it takes to get through your day. Truly. Teaching alone was far more exhausting than any of my days at home... so I can't imagine coming home to be a mom rather than enter vegetative states!

    Oh the learning I will do in Sept. If you could make me a word wall for then, I'd be grateful! :)

  2. Hahahaha! I would have no idea what to put on a word wall for little people! But I definitely appreciate the shout out for my word walls. It sounds like you "elementary" folks are experts in these things!

  3. I think what you have created is more of a wall of "anchor charts" ;) Your students will really benefit from this. And yes!! The very specific vocabulary you are speaking of are tier 3 words - very difficult for English Language Learners as well since they are really only encountered in a specialized area. I have some professional reading around vocabulary that you might find interesting. I am glad that you are finding your groove back at work!

    Erin V

  4. Hugh had a baby wall in his room after Calder was born. He probably doesn't remember. It was part of his room decoration.

  5. this made me dread going back to work next week


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