Weekend Coffee Share: We Had Snow!

weekend coffee share logo hosted at parttimemonsterblog.comGood morning to you. The snow is drifting lazily onto the ground. It is calm outside with not a breath of wind. I love it when it snows – and we have not had enough of it this winter. How about we walk outside a bit and enjoy the silent world? When we get back in, we can warm ourselves up with a hot drink.

On Friday evening, everyone walked home while the snow was falling. It was a pleasant walk as the sidewalks were not yet covered with slush. The going-home experience on Tuesday had been different. The sleet caused everyone to walk home timidly as the ice made the sidewalks slippery. Yes, I almost fell and decided not to go to my exercise class. I did not want to slip and fall in the dark streets on my way to or from the gym.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I had a number of students absent this week – some were sick, some were on a sun vacation. Ah, the beach right now would be bliss! And the sun! We still haven’t had days filled with sunlight. This winter is a very dreary one: no snow to cover the concrete sidewalks; and no blue skies and sunlight.

This week I have started seeing parents to discuss their child’s progress in my class. I have spread the interviews over quite a number of days so that I do not have to see them all in one evening. The evening that has been set aside for interviews is the one on which I Zumba – and I would prefer not to miss my class.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that the Parent Council at my school bought a projector for my class. I know that both the children and I are going to love it! One of my colleagues helped me set it up and showed me how to use it. We figured out how to connect it to my iPad and were astounded that we could watch YouTube on the screen as well as see all the Apps. On Friday I used the projector for the first time to show the children a video (I chose Caillou). They loved it! I think I will show them a video once a week – it will be good for their vocabulary development and listening comprehension.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I do feel tired and that I am looking forward to the long weekend coming up. The upcoming week will be a four day week but it promises to be jam-packed. Hope your week is a good one – and remember to have some time to yourself.

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2017

(This post is linked to the Weekend Coffee Share hosted by Diane, The Part-Time Monster)

Weekend Coffee Share: A Stuffy Nose

weekend coffee share logo hosted at parttimemonsterblog.comIf we were having coffee, I would greet you on yet another overcast day. According to the news, in January we had only 16 days of seeing the sun. Very dreary! I am hoping that we get to see more sunshine during the month of February. This morning, however, does not look too promising.

Last weekend I woke up on Saturday sneezing which, unfortunately, turned into a cold. Today I am still dealing with a stuffy nose. I did not feel well enough to go to Zumba on Monday night, and on Thursday I still was carrying tissues around with me. I am hoping that tomorrow I will be able to pick up my exercise routine again. I missed moving to the music – though I did not miss going out into the cold in the evenings!

The last week was quite frigid. The children came in from recess with red cheeks – and I am sure my cheeks were just as cold! I had quite a few children absent during the week due to illness – on one day I had 15 children in my class. It was a very laid back day for me. 🙂

I have to tell you that this week was the second week of my crochet club at school. I still cannot believe how many children have registered. It is hard to say no to any child who wants to join as they are so keen. I saw a couple of the older girls the day before my group sessions at lunchtime and helped them a little with the stitches (sc). It was so nice to see them helping others at the Friday lunchtime session. Soon they will all understand what to do and we will all be crocheting the time away!

If we were having coffee, I would tell you the corrections to my report cards have been done – there were just a few typos. Now they need to be signed, copied, and placed in envelopes. I have made appointments to start seeing parents next week. I would like to get the interviews done over the next couple of weeks so that I do not have to stay late on a Thursday night and miss my Zumba class.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I am now going to make some crepes for my children for lunch. They have been asking me to make some for a couple of weeks now and I have finally mixed the batter. It has been standing for an hour and is now ready to be cooked. Enjoy your week. Hope it is not too grey!

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2017

(This post is linked to the Weekend Coffee Share hosted by Diane, The Part-Time Monster)

Weekend Coffee Share: Report Cards are Done!

weekend coffee share logo hosted at parttimemonsterblog.comIf we were having coffee, I would greet you with a smile on my face. My report cards are done! Completed on Friday afternoon after school, a week and two weekends before they are due! And I am happy to say that I did not work on them over the weekend at home. Sitting down in front of the computer and focusing helped a lot to get them done this quickly. Now I intend to contact the parents I need to see and spread out the meetings so that they are not all done at once.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that during the past week I had to take a day off as a headache turned into a migraine. I spent the day in my darkened bedroom and slept a little. It was worth taking time off as I felt so much better the next day. (So much better that I finished those report cards 🙂 !)

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I started my crochet club at school. Friday was the first session – and I was surprised at how many children showed up. More children came to sign up during the lunch session, and others asked me for forms. It was quite a challenge helping them learn to cast on and do chain stitches. Luckily my former ECE wants to learn as well and, after quickly showing her, she helped me to help the children. A few of the children ‘got it’ and many realised that it is not as easy as they thought. I encouraged them not to give up. I hope that they do not and that they come to the next session.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that yesterday my husband made a lovely dinner for us to celebrate the start of the Chinese New Year. My nephew came over to celebrate with us and we had a lovely evening eating and chatting. If you celebrate the start of the lunar calendar, I wish you a wonderful Year of the Rooster.

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2017

(This post is linked to the Weekend Coffee Share hosted by Diane, The Part-Time Monster)

Weekend Coffee Share: A Fruitful Week

weekend coffee share logo hosted at parttimemonsterblog.comIf we were having coffee, I would welcome you in from the wind. We have had lovely weather during the past two days – it has almost been Spring-like. The wind, however, is picking up and I can hear it howling outside of my window. I am sure that the wind will bring with it lower temperatures.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that on Monday to Thursday we had indoor recess at school. The children could not go out to play because the fields were layered with ice. Keeping children inside for four days in a row is not a fun experience! They need the time to go outside, run around, and breathe in fresh air. As I passed the school this morning, I noticed that the ice had melted. Yipee! The fields may be muddy but at least the children can go out to play.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that Friday was a PA day: the children did not go to school; and the teachers had the opportunity to begin working on the report cards. I entered the school at 8:30am and closed the door to my classroom at 4:30pm. The long day was worth it.

Assessing student work. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2017

The lack of interruptions enabled me to finish my assessment of my students’ work; and to complete 85% of the report cards. I felt a sense of satisfaction as I walked home. Because I completed so much of the work on Friday, my stress level to the approaching deadline is not too high. I know that if a do a little everyday, my work will soon be done.

If we were having coffee I would tell you that on Saturday morning I made my way to Michaels, a craft store that stocks a wide range of yarn (wool). I was armed with a list of names and searched for crochet hooks and yarn to make scarves.

Yarn shopping. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2017

I am to start a crochet club at school next Friday. I have 12 children who have signed up so far, and others who have shown interest. The first project is a scarf which the children will wear with pride when they are done. I am hoping that I can get them to love crochet as much as I do. I am pleased to say that there are some boys who have joined. 🙂

On the way back from Michaels, I stopped off at the library to hand in my books… and I could not resist going in to browse for reading matter. I decided to pick up a few titles of some authors whose books I have previously enjoyed.

This week’s reading selection. 

If we were having coffee, I would tell you to have a good week. And remember to do something for yourself.

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2017

(This post is linked to the Weekend Coffee Share hosted by Diane, The Part-Time Monster)

Weekend Coffee Share: Winter Break

weekend coffee share logo hosted at parttimemonsterblog.comGood morning, and welcome. If we were having coffee, I would tell you that the Winter school break has now ended and Monday we will all be back at school. And it will be cold! The weather during the first week of our break was unseasonably warm but Old Man Winter has decided that we should not forget that we are meant to experience cold weather at this time of the year!

If we were having coffee, we would chat about about what we have done during the break. I would tell you that I loved the week of Christmas. This is a time that my family are together and we have some serious downtime. We eat together, laugh together, read together, watch movies together. On Boxing Day, we always go out somewhere to do a little shopping. I avoid the malls as I am not a fan of big crowds. This year we shopped along the main street near our home – and the fellow shoppers were bearable. Bearable in that there were more shoppers than usual, but not too many that it made browsing unpleasant.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that my birthday is soon after Christmas – the 27th December. It has become a family tradition that we go and eat a buffet lunch to celebrate my birthday.

I enjoyed our lunch and the time we spent eating together. Now that my children are older, we can have some interesting conversations.

After lunch, we set off for the cinema. As I am a Star Wars fan, we saw a film of my choice: Rogue One.

I do admit to being a little disappointed – I expected the story to continue from where the last film left off. (I had deliberately read nothing about the film prior to watching). I found that the film was shot too much in the dark; and that many of the battle scenes were reminiscent of the original Star Wars films.

If were were having coffee, I would tell you that I have relaxed a lot during this past week. After a visit to the library, I have immersed myself in words and enjoyed the stories of many authors. This is something that am able to do only when I am on break. The break is now over and I am spending the weekend putting away the Christmas tree, shopping for the week, and getting ready to go back to school on Monday.

Enjoy your weekend and have a wonderful week.

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2017

(This post is linked to the Weekend Coffee Share hosted by Diane, The Part-Time Monster)

Weekend Coffee Share: It Has Begun

weekend coffee share logo hosted at parttimemonsterblog.comIf we were having coffee, I would greet you with a big smile. Yes it has begun. The break to which we have been looking forward for an entire week. At school we were counting the days; at home we were counting the nights. What a relief that the Winter break has begun. Finally I am able to relax a little and recharge my energy.

Not completely though. I cannot believe that it is Christmas tomorrow. My gifts are all wrapped (last night’s task) and ready to place under the tree. After our chat, I shall head out to do some grocery shopping to buy bread, milk, fruit and vegetables. As I head out early, I will avoid the crowds and the bustle of the last-minute shoppers.

The last week at school before the break was a lot calmer than I expected. This year I got an Elf on the Shelf – and the children loved it. I named him Jean-Noel and gave him the nickname Jean-Jean. The kids loved him and looked for him every morning as they entered the class.

I placed a basket in the front of the class and they put notes in it for him. The questions they asked were answered in a daily letter I typed up for them to read. They loved that Jean-Jean knew what was going on – and that he made personal references. This is a tradition that I will repeat next year as I found that it calms them a little of their pre-Christmas excitement – and it gives them a reason to write.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that our last day of 2016 was a pyjama day. We spent the day doing circle time, attending the Holiday sing-along in the gym organised by the music teacher, and watching a movie in the gym (with popcorn included). It was a low-key day which everyone enjoyed.

A Last Day. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

If we were having coffee, I would wish you a wonderful Holiday. Enjoy your Christmas time with your family. And if you celebrate Hanukkah, I wish you the same as you begin your celebration tonight.

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

(This post is linked to the Weekend Coffee Share hosted by Diane, The Part-Time Monster)

Weekend Coffee Share: One Week To Go

weekend coffee share logo hosted at parttimemonsterblog.comIf we were having coffee, I would encourage you to get out of the cold. We have had a couple of snow storms since we last spoke and the temperatures are a little frigid outside. Children have had a fun time building snowmen and snow forts over the past few days – the snow is perfect for building. Recess has been a fun time,and the children have come in from the cold red-cheeked with cold hands.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that it is only one more week to go until schools break up for the winter break. Everyone is looking forward to it – teachers as well as students. The children, of course, are looking forward to having Santa visit them and are waiting with excitement!

The following week at school looks to be a laid-back one with holiday sing-alongs organised by our music teacher, the showing of the film Elf on the last day of school, and a few spirit days. Experience tells me that it will be very difficult to get the children working but I will do my best. 🙂

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that all my Christmas gifts have been bought. All I need to do now is wrap them. This weekend I will buy some wrapping paper and search for my labels. I intend to finish making the gifts for my students and some of my colleagues. I participate in the Secret Santa with my fellow teachers and my intention is to complete the gift I began last weekend for the person whose name I pulled out of the hat.

The weekend will not all be about Christmas preparation, however. I do intend to relax a little on the sofa with my current read: Unsouled by Neil Shusterman. Loving the book so far! I need to finish it soon as my daughter has nearly completed the previous book in the series and will be wanting to continue reading the story. I enjoy having discussions with her on the plot and listening to her predictions. I am very careful not to give her any spoilers.

If we were having coffee, I would remind you to take a moment to relax during the hurly-burly as everyone prepares for the Holidays. Until next week.

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

(This post is linked to the Weekend Coffee Share hosted by Diane, The Part-Time Monster)

 

Weekend Coffee Share: Winter has Arrived

weekend coffee share logo hosted at parttimemonsterblog.comIf we were having coffee, I would invite you in from the cold. After a lovely stretch of mild weather, winter seems to have arrived with a vengeance. We have woken up to ice, then snow, on the ground. Flurries have fallen from the sky as we have walked outside. Children have found spots of ice in the playground to ‘skate’ on. I have had to knuckle down and wear my hat – something I am not too fond of doing! Children have started wearing their snowpants which means I have to factor in extra time for them to get ready to go out for recess, or to go home.

The arrival of the cold is acknowledged, but we are not too focused on it as we prepare for Christmas. I love seeing the decorations wherever we go. We have our tree up in the school and the beautiful decorations in the office. Slowly parents are sending in decorations for our classroom and this is changing the look inside of the room. In class the conversation buzzes around Santa as the children look forward to Christmas and the moment they open their presents. Those children celebrating Hanukkah are excited as well as they look forward to lighting the menorah and opening their gifts.

I still haven’t caught up on my marking and documentation but it has reached a point where it is more manageable. I am hoping to at least get the filing of my students’ work up to date before the Winter break so that when the parents come in for the class party, they can see most of what we have done in class. I have managed to change one of my documentation panels on the bulletin boards outside my classroom and have got everything ready to do the second on Monday. The panels were due for a change as the last ones were put up about a month ago.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I am hoping to complete my shopping for Christmas gifts this weekend. I know exactly what it is I am going to buy so it shouldn’t take too long. It is snowing as I am writing this, so it shouldn’t be too cold outside. Writing of feeling cold makes me think of how cold it has been in our apartment for the last week. Something must be wrong with the heating system as the rooms are still uncomfortable, especially our bedrooms. I am hoping that soon the heating will be sorted out before it gets even colder outside.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I am looking forward to the time over the weekend when my chores are done. I have started book 3 in Neil Shusterman’s Unwind series and it is as good as the previous ones. In addition, I intend to start working on my gift for Secret Santa. The recipient of my gift will be receiving a handmade crocheted scarf. I am making one using a stitch I haven’t done before and I am hoping that I can get it right.

If we were having coffee, I would wish you a wonderful weekend as you get ready for the upcoming Holidays.

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

(This post is linked to the Weekend Coffee Share hosted by Diane, The Part-Time Monster)

Weekend Coffee Share: Exhaustion

weekend coffee share logo hosted at parttimemonsterblog.comIf we were having coffee, I would tell you that finishing off the week was difficult for me as I felt exhausted. This time of year, most teachers are tired and looking forward to the winter break. And I am definitely one of them! I am looking forward to the break to relax, sleep late, and recharge my batteries.

Work-wise, everything was as expected. I am still trying to catch up on my marking and documentation – it seems to be a never-ending battle. I have bowed down to the workload and brought some home to do this weekend. I do not like doing it as it cuts into my relaxation time, but I have reached the point where I have to or else I will not catch up.

Yesterday I went to do a little Christmas shopping for gifts. I was a bit disappointed with what I saw in the shops – nothing interesting that my children would love. Next weekend I intend to go to the bookstore. I have thought about which titles to get all my family members and, hopefully, I will find what I am looking for. Yesterday I bought a little yarn for a scarf I intend to make for my participation in this year’s “Secret Santa” at work. .I will be trying out a new stitch and look forward to making it. It has been a while since I picked up my hook….

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that Winter approached with a vengeance on 1 December. Up until then, we had been lulled into feeling that Fall would never end. Now when we step outside, we know that Old Man Winter has not forgotten us. At least with the start of what already feels like winter, we have the distraction of Christmas. I did not see too many Christmas decorations when I was out yesterday but I am hoping to see more when I go out and about next weekend.

If we were having coffee, I would thank you for your visit. I wish you a wonderful week.  Stay warm! (Or cool, if you are in the southern hemisphere ).

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

(This post is linked to the Weekend Coffee Share hosted by Diane, The Part-Time Monster)

Weekend Coffee Share: A New Floor

weekend coffee share logo hosted at parttimemonsterblog.comIf we were having coffee, I would greet you with a big smile. The weather is mild once again – though I am sure this will not last for long. We have been promised a typical Canadian winter, so I will enjoy the mild weather while we have it.

The beginning of my week at work began with moving furniture from my classroom. Why? The carpenters and tilers had arrived to retile my floor. My furniture was placed in the hallway and I moved some notebooks and my rolling board into the library. I set up in the carpeted space and organised some seating for my students. The library became our ‘home’ for two days. The children were a little unsettled at first but soon followed their routines.

On Wednesday morning, I moved my things back to my room – and then spent the 45 minutes before the school bell rang setting up my room in preparation for the children. The floor looks beautiful – but we still wait for the painters to come around and paint the walls!

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Brand New Floor. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that the rest of the week went smoothly. I gave my students their first opportunity to self-evaluate their work and, after co-constructing some success criteria for the neat copy of their writing, I can see an improve in some of their work. I am hoping that repetition of this exercise will encourage my students to take their time when doing their neat copy.

Yesterday after school my daughter and a couple of her friends came into my classroom to help me with some filing and writing of songs. I still have a lot of work to do but, with their help, I am beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that this is the last weekend I give myself before I begin getting ready for Christmas. This year we have school right up until 23 December, so I will need to get all my shopping done before then. I guess I need to start thinking about those Christmas presents!

Have a wonderful weekend

What would you tell me if we were having coffee?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

(This post is linked to the Weekend Coffee Share hosted by Diane, The Part-Time Monster)