Weekend Coffee Share: A Long Weekend

If we were having coffee, I would wish you a wonderful Easter – or Passover – if that is what you celebrate at this time of year. This weekend has not only been a time of reflection, but also a period in which to relax. I have been feeling quite tired recently and looked forward to 4 days of no work.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that Friday afternoon was spent sleeping. After my nap, I left the papers I had brought home to correct in my bag. They still remain carefully organised on the sofa and will probably see light of day tomorrow. I am a little behind on my marking and will take the opportunity during this long weekend to catch up a little while listening to some music.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that yesterday I met up with a close friend of mine. It had been a while since I had last seen her and we spent hours talking. How I wish we lived nearer to one another so that we could meet up more often. Good friends are definitely treasures to have in one’s life and, to me, she is definitely one of my favourite people.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that now my girls are older, I no longer organise an Easter egg hunt for them. I also do not buy them loads of chocolate. This year I offered each family member a small packet of Lindt chocolates instead of the requisite Easter rabbits and chocolate eggs. These chocolates will definitely be savoured more, I think, than the sugary offerings that line the store shelves.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I am finally going to take the time to figure out how to download/upload some of the music that I have chosen for my practical exam. I currently have 40 minutes of Zumba choreography and will soon I will have enough for an entire class. Maybe another month of practice and I will be ready? On Thursday my Zumba instructor asked me to take over her class quickly for a song – and happily I remembered all of the dance moves! 🙂

If we were having coffee, I would wish you a wonderful week ahead. Schools are closed on Monday so I will have another day at home. 🙂

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2019

(This post is linked to Eclectic Alli and the Weekend Coffee Share)

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Weekend Coffee Share: A Cold and Sickly Week

Join us for some coffee time!If we were having coffee, I would greet you with a tired smile and a bit of a cough. This week my body insisted on resting and saddled me with a cough and runny nose. I guess it was my turn to get sick! I still went into school as my students were presenting their projects during the week and I needed to be there to assess them. They did a good job with their projects and they were so excited to share what they had learned about one of their ancestral countries. I plan on inviting the parents into the classroom next week to come and have a look at what the children have done – and for the children to have the opportunity to share what they have learned with parents.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that the weather this week has not been too pleasant. After a very mild weekend, the temperatures dropped and with it came precipitation in the form of ice pellets and snow. We experienced a couple of days in which we had indoor recess. I made sure the children had an opportunity to get rid of their excess energy by putting on Just Dance for them. Most of the kids enjoy this activity though there are some who do not enjoy moving their bodies.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I read a Middle Grade novel during the past week – Inkling by Kenneth Oppel. I really like his writing and loved this story. Keep a look out for my review this week if you are on the look out for a wonderful story for 7 – 12 year olds.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that on Monday evening my family and I went to dinner to celebrate the start of the Chinese New Year. We had a wonderful time eating delicious food. I loved the atmosphere in the restaurant and could not resist snapping a few pictures of their decorations.

We ate until we were too full – definitely too many dumplings! As always, we enjoyed the variety of the buffet and ended the meal with a few bites of dessert.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I intend to rest this weekend and hope that by Monday my throat will no longer be aching.

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2019

(This post is linked to Eclectic Alli and the Weekend Coffee Share)

Weekend Coffee Share: Tidying Up

Join us for some coffee time!If we were having coffee, I would welcome you in quickly from the cold. The temperatures here have dropped quite rapidly: Tuesday I was overdressed and felt too warm the entire day but that changed on Wednesday with the colder weather. The last few days it has felt like winter, and what you would expect of January here in Toronto. We haven’t had much snow, though, just a few flurries. The snow that has managed to stick, has melted very quickly. I do miss having snow during winter as the surroundings are very grey without it – bare trees and brown grass in the parks do not brighten up the concrete buildings and sidewalks.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that my day on Tuesday ended with a highlight. I attended an event organised by Frenzy Presents of Harper Collins Canada. (If you did not see my post, click here). I enjoyed the event as I always do. It was fun to go out for a little and meet another author (whose book I loved, by the way. If you want to read my review, click here). The key lime pie we ate was also very tasty. It was my first time trying it and it is definitely a pie I will eat again.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that during the past week I did quite a bit of organising of my students’ work. My aim this week is to write their report cards – which are due in 2 weeks time. I have been recording their results; and testing their oral, reading and writing skills. It is not an easy task as I try my best to put the correct symbols next to their name.

If we were having coffee I would tell you that by the end of the school week, I felt like I had not had a break. This is a busy time of year as we get everything sorted to write the report cards. Teachers are closeting themselves in their rooms during lunch times as they work towards the upcoming deadline. After the deadline has been achieved, things at school will be a little bit more relaxed.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I foresee a busy week ahead. I know that I am going to have to focus and stick to my goals of the day so that I do not get stressed. I wish you a wonderful week ahead – may it be a stress-free one.

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2019

(This post is linked to Eclectic Alli and the Weekend Coffee Share)

Weekend Coffee Share: A Fall Week

Join us for some coffee time!

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that it definitely feels like Fall. The temperatures is consistently staying lower and I have had to wear coat and gloves when going outside. Inside our apartment it has also been cold. After complaining, however, the problem has been fixed and now we are warm and toasty in our home.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I am enjoying the Fall colours. Even though I live in the city, there are places where I can see the beautiful colours in the trees. One of the spots is in our school yard. This week, I went outside with the children and they spent some time searching for leaves so that they could work on an in class project. They had such fun searching for a variety and, once the bin was filled, they had extra time to play outside in the crisp air.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that on Wednesday I took a break from the classroom and attended a teacher’s workshop on guided reading. Guided reading is an area I want to work on this year as it is so important to get he children reading. Our school board has a vision of getting all grade 1s reading by the end of the year – which is why the grade 1 teachers have been given guided reading tables and are being sent on workshops. The session on Wednesday was a little disappointing as they spoke on the Daily 5 – something which I am already implementing in my classroom. I have been promised that the second session will be more of what I want. I will attend it with my grade 1 teacher colleagues next month.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that last night I went to another author talk presented by the Toronto International Author Festival, and that I will attending another this evening. I am really enjoying these sessions and will definitely attend more next year.

If we were having coffee, I would be saying goodbye. It has just gone past 11am and I need to get ready for my exercise class. When I get back I will work a little on some book reviews before going to the author event. My read books have been piling up and I haven’t had a chance yet to sit at my computer and write down my thoughts on these book. Tomorrow it is my intention to complete my report cards as they are due on Tuesday.

If we were  having coffee, I would wish you a wonderful weekend – and a Happy Halloween. 🎃👻😈

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

(This post is linked to Eclectic Alli and the Weekend Coffee Share)

Weekend Coffee Share: Culture and Dance

Join us for some coffee time!

If we were having coffee, I would greet you with a tired smile. Even though the work week was short (we had Thanksgiving on Monday), my days – and nights – were were filled to the brim with a visit to the Art Gallery and a danceathon in aid of charity.

On Wednesday evening I had the opportunity to view a new exhibition at the Art Gallery of Ontario. The evening was set aside for teachers, the idea being that we might be interested in taking our classes to the exhibit. The evening began with a talk about the photographer’s work and what he had hoped to achieve with showing his work. The title of the exhibit is Anthropocene and it showcases the changes that humanity has made on the earth’s landscape.

The talk and the exhibit was extremely interesting. It is not an event I would take my class to as I believe they are to young to appreciate it. I would, however, do so if I taught older children.

During the week my husband and I celebrated the fact that we have been married for 19 years. We decided to go to a movie – just the two of us. On Thursday evening, I took him away from his computer and his work to see A Simple Favour. We thought it might be an action movie (my husband loves watching these) but instead it turned out to be a psychological thriller. The story had quite a number of twists in it – just like the novels that I enjoy reading.:)

The late nights were catching up to me (I am normally asleep by 9:15pm), so I was a little bit slow on Friday. On Saturday, however, I looked forward to participating in my first ever dancathon. The event had been organised by some Zumba / Sh’bam / Body Jam teachers at the Gym chain that I belong to. The event was part of a group of events that have been organised to raise money for children with special needs.

The event was fun and the two hours passed quickly. My body felt tired afterwards though, and a little stiff once I had cooled down. When I got home, I could not believe the amount of steps that my fitbit had recorded – this is the most I have moved since I got the watch.

The weekend is almost over. I am on my way to see my cousin then I will come home to complete my weekend chores. The past week has been a pleasant one – and I look forward to what the next week will bring. May your week be a wonderful one.

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

(This post is linked to Eclectic Alli and the Weekend Coffee Share)

Weekend Coffee Share: Proud Parent

Join us for some coffee time!If we were having coffee, I would tell you that Fall has arrived. Even though many leaves have not yet fallen to the ground, the weather has definitely turned to the lower temperatures. For the last few days, it has been cool and grey. The winds have a chill to them, and the leaden skies remind us that the Summer is over.

If we were having coffee, I would tel you that I met with the parents of my students during this past week. I hope I have allayed their concerns about their child being in a combined class. One of my parents (whose daughter was in my class 2 years ago) said I should send the parents concerned about combined classes to him as he felt the experience was a positive one for his child.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that this week I had a proud parent moment. I attended the launch of Young Voices, an annual magazine published by the Toronto Public Library. Last year she submitted one of her poems and it was accepted for publication.

My daughter’s poem in Young Voices. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

At the launch my daughter performed her poem and got to meet other people who had had their contributions published. It was wonderful to see my daughter confidently sharing her work. Seeing this has helped me realise that we have prepared her well for her future.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that our school had our Terry Fox run on Friday. Each year we run this event and raise money for cancer research. Our school’s goal this year is to raise $7 000 – we will know by the end of next week whether we have achieved our goal or not.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that with this cool weather all I want to do is curl up on the sofa and read. I am currently reading The Lost Queen by Signe Pike and I am enjoying it. Historical novels are one of my favourite genres. The book I read thereafter will need to be a little lighthearted as this one is quite weighty.

If we were having coffee, I would say that it is time now to finish my household chores. My treat thereafter will be the reading time cuddled under a blanket.

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

(This post is linked to Eclectic Alli and the Weekend Coffee Share)

Weekend Coffee Share: A Library Book Sale

Join us for some coffee time!If we were having coffee, I would ask for the iced version because the last few days have felt like mid-summer! At the beginning of the week I was hopeful that Fall was on its way as we left home in the morning wearing our jackets. Alas, we were disappointed. My daughter cannot wait for ‘sweater-weather’ and is forced to continue wearing shorts and short sleeved t-shirts.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that the week at school was pleasant. My students are slowly getting used to their new teacher as well as their new classroom routine. I am still in the process of setting a few things up (such as their binders) but hopefully that will be completed soon. I have a volunteer coming in this week and she will help me get everything together. She has helped me before so she will know exactly what to do.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I attended a library book sale at the large reference library in Toronto. They hold a large book sale from time to time in order to raise money for the literacy programs that are held in various library branches all over the city. I was astounded by the number of books on offer considering it was the third day of the sale. I left there with a bulging bag of books which cost me 50c each. Not only will I get pleasure from these books, but so will the people I will pass them onto.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that the heat is making me drowsy. It is definitely the kind of day to spend reading in front of the fan. I have had a busy day up until now and am going to relax a little and continue with my current read: Born a Crime by Trevor Noah.

Enjoy your upcoming week – may it be an enjoyable one.

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

(This post is linked to Eclectic Alli and the Weekend Coffee Share)

Weekend Coffee Share: Beginning to Wrap Up

Join us for some coffee time!If we were having coffee, I would tell you that the weather for the last week has been perfect – not too hot and not too cold. This morning the air outside is refreshingly cool and has the potential to be hot and muggy. By then all my chores will be done and I will be able to do a little bit of relaxing  and reading.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I am taking things slowly in class. I have finished the curriculum and all the planned activities that will be reported on in the report cards. Now what I will do with my class are fun learning activities. During this upcoming week three of my students are leaving before the end of the school year to go on vacation and I am therefore getting all their work together so that it can go home before they leave for their planned trips. We will also have the class party a week before I normally would hold it as I want to wish them all well for the upcoming year – as well as give them their gift.

In addition to gathering all of my students’ work, I have started taking down things from my walls and putting items away in the cupboards. I was told on Thursday that my classroom will be used during the Summer for a Summer camp so it is important that the room be tidied and ready for another person to use by the 29 June. The downside to this is that my task needs to be done in 2 weeks; the upside is that I will be forced to finish on time and not linger over the tidying in the first week of our break.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that my family is missing the father of our tribe. We managed to speak to my husband last night and it was nice to see his face and hear him laugh. Sigh … another 2 weeks and then we will all be back together again. At least for a while.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I am going to have a busy week. My report cards will be returned and I will make the corrections; the school concert is happening; and I will be tidying my room. The children are excited that the Summer vacation is almost here – and the teachers are looking forward to the break and the chance to rest and connect with their families. There is quite a buzz in the school at the moment.

I wish you a wonderful week ahead. May it be filled with sunshine and smiles.

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

(This post is linked to Eclectic Alli and the Weekend Coffee Share)

Share Your World: A Disney Nickname

What was or is your favorite cartoon?

Max and Goofy at the Powerline concert in Los ...

When growing up, I used to love watching the Mickey Mouse cartoons – especially the ones featuring Goofy. The reason may be that I had been nicknamed Goofy by my mom because I was as clumsy as he was portrayed to be. I have never minded my nickname – I accepted my clumsiness and I liked this Disney character. Thankfully I have grown out of my clumsiness. I am still called ‘Goof” by a select few – and, yes, I do answer to the name 🙂

Now I love any Disney animation. The Lion King. Brave. Aladdin. Not only do I enjoy the storyline, but I admire the time taken and technique used to create such magical films.

Which cooking utensil (other than the usual pots and pans etc) would you miss the most?

Inexpensive electric rice cooker containing co...

The cooking utensil I find most useful is the rice cooker. I am able to cook rice without it – but it is so much easier to use this tool! I measure the rice, wash it, add the required amount of water, and then switch it on. The rice comes out perfectly every time – and I do not need to watch it.

Would you dare to sleep in haunted house overnight?

A haunted house? Not if it is like the houses portrayed in horror films. My heart would not be able to take it! If, however, the ghost does not harm people I might consider it. But it may take a bit of convincing!

What did you appreciate or what made you smile this past week?  

I appreciated the long weekend that we just had. School was out for 4 days (Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday). I enjoyed the extra time off and had the opportunity to read and relax. I am now ready to move forward with the upcoming lessons, deadlines, and activities with my students.

041514 sywbannerWhat would you answer to any of these questions?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

(This post is linked to Cee’s Share Your World weekly challenge). 

Weekend Coffee Share: A New Experience

wordswag_15073188796611453091488.pngIf we were having coffee, I would tell you that a week which began with a sore throat and a feeling of fatigue, ended on a high note. The sad thing about my week was that I was unable to attend my Zumba classes 😦  BUT on Thursday I had an experience that pushed that all aside.

Last year my colleague (who was the school librarian at that time), convinced me to apply with her to present at the Ontario Library Association (OLA) Super Conference. She wanted us to present that work we had done for the demonstration classroom (in which other teachers from the board visited my classroom), and which we intended (and did) present at the TDSB (Toronto District School Board) Google Camp. Our application was accepted the end of June last year; and we polished up our slideshow presentation last Friday.

Ontario Library Association Super Conference. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

On Thursday when I woke up, I was pleased that I had rested my voice enough to be able to speak. The honey and lemon drink had also done the trick in helping to soothe my aching throat. I was excited about the day ahead, but also nervous. I met up with my colleague and we headed to the Convention Centre. The place was abuzz when we arrived and we eagerly went to attend the welcome breakfast for first-time speakers. While eating, we browsed the list of events for the day and figured out where we were to hold our presentation. We chose not to attend other speaker’s presentations and instead chose to roam the booths and see what vendors had on offer. We had such fun going to the booths where we stood in line to receive books signed by Canadian authors. I loved speaking to the authors and hearing why they had written their stories. There was such an array of genres on offer, it was mind-boggling.

When it was time for our presentation, we had no trouble setting up the technology (sigh of relief!). I had followed the advice given to us and had downloaded our slideshow as a PDF. In addition, I had brought my charger with me for the laptop – and was thankful for doing so as the laptop’s battery was running low during the presentation (yes, the laptop is an old one). The presentation went smoothly. My colleague and I had practiced at Google Camp and we knew what we would talk about: she focused on the library aspect, and I focused on the classroom activities. We had quite a number of people attend our session. All were teachers (mostly elementary), all were attentive. People asked questions and were writing down notes. The time went by so quickly – we wished that we had had more. Afterwards my colleague and I were beaming. The experience was amazing – and one we would love to repeat.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that after Thursday, Friday was a little bland. I did end the day, though, up to date with my marking – and that is always positive!

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I am now going to get ready to go to Zumba. I haven’t gone for the last week because of my aching throat and tired bones. I have missed it and definitely want to go – especially as this is the last day for our current teacher. Last week he told us he is going to teach at another branch and I am hoping today he will tell us that they have found us another Zumba instructor.

Enjoy your week.May it be a positive one.

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

(This post is linked to Eclectic Alli and the Weekend Coffee Share)