Monday, November 5, 2012

Seoul Wine Train

A few weekends ago Jenelle and I organized a ladies only wine train trip.

I would write about it but....Jenelle already did and she is a much better writer than I am.

So here is a link to her blog about our amazing weekend!

Soul Wine Train

I will add, I love these ladies! I only have a handful of girl friends and I feel so lucky to have these women in my life. I love them like sisters and we have the best time together!

Oregon City Pen Pals

All of my students have pen pals this term. I posted on Facebook in early September asking any and all of my teacher friends if they were interested in being pen pals with my students. I was SO happy when my friend Jacinta replied and said that she would LOVE to work it into her schedule.

Jacinta and I were inseparable in our last few years at WOU. Her and her son became like family. We did everything together. Those are some of my very favorite college memories.

 Jacinta, Sebastian and I on my first trip to Jacinta's home town, Hood River, for her birthday. 
July 2007
 Jacinta and I wrote some curriculum together during our time student teaching at WOU. 
We were selected to present our work on campus. May 2008
Jacinta and I at her wedding. August 2011

I am SO excited to be able to be pen pals with her and her class. It is a fun way to share our classroom lives and keep in touch. I sent her class the first set of pen pal letters in early October.
My students were super excited about having a new "friend" in the United States. They love the unique names and that we have to wait for the mail man. Everything about pen pals is exciting to a first grader.

Well something fun and unexpected happened today.
Our pen pal letters from Jacinta's class came! yay!

How cute is she? Seriously! Jacinta was SO thoughtful. She sent a cool Oregon photo guide so that I can show the kids where Joe and I live in the United States. She even noticed on Pinterest that I am slightly obsessed with the mustache craze and got me these fun mustache cookie cutters! But what truly made me tear up were the Reese's candy bars.

Jacinta and I were obsessed with Target in college. We would stalk the sale aisles and find fun teaching stuff or prizes for our students. Then one Easter we found that Target discounts all of the holiday themed Reese's bars the day after any holiday. We bought about a dozen bags of the Easter egg shaped Reese's bars. But here's the kicker, they were honestly like $0.38 cents a bag. Hahaha! We filled her freezer and ate on and gave away Easter candy for the rest of the year. To this day when I see a holiday shaped Reese's bar I think of Jacinta.

She also sent a cute hand written letter. The mail man came before lunch and it truly made my day! I opened a few letters to check them out. Her students did a great job. And she took all of their pictures and sent them in with the letters!

My first graders went nuts! The loved "meeting" their pen pals, and see their faces. Hubert wanted to have his picture taken with his new "friend". Of course I obliged. Then in true first grade fashion everyone else wanted a picture with their pen pal.

Amy (BIS) and Carter
Ashley (BIS) and Kiara
Hubert (BIS) and Jacqueline
Kelly (BIS) and Katie
Ben (BIS) and Alexandra
Woods (BIS) and Joaquin

This is just a few of the kids with their pen pals. All of my classes are between 4-9 students. So I have several of my classes paired up with Jacinta's class. Throughout the week as I see students I will give them their letters and have them write back.
I can't even describe how excited my students were. This is such a fun project. I am so thankful that I get to share it with Jacinta. 

A Walk in the Park

***I have a ton of catching up to do on this ol blog......but the thing is life keeps happening and my list of "to blog about" keeps growing. So I figured I might as well blog about something even if it is not at the top of my "to-do" list.

Work has been a drag. Being a teacher can really suck sometimes. The work load lately has been heavy. It's the end of a term for our older elementary students. Which means reviewing all of this terms material, making review worksheets, term test, then my least cards! Ahgg. I HATE writing them. I won't go into it but they are more complicated then back home, its not a fill in the bubble, click a comment to add. Every single student gets a personalized comment that is no less than a paragraph long for each subject, from each teacher. It it a miserable task for me. Anyway....then at the end of this month it's term test for the first graders too. And to add to the fun this month....drum roll please....we got  four new students in pre-k! They are only Korean age 5. Which means in North American age they are between 2- 4 years old, depending on their birthday. I haven't seen their paper work yet, but I imagine one is 3 and others are 4. We build a whole new class for these little darlings.

So... Joe and I decided to take the kindergartners for a mini field trip. Getting out of the building after a long week was perfect. We have had a beautiful fall so far but it will be getting cold really soon. Winters are long in Korea and we knew it would be the last time we would be able to get outside with the kids until next spring. The weather was perfect. Cool, crisp air, sunny and dry. It was a picture perfect fall day. There is a great little park near the school that has a pond full of fish and the path to the park is lined with trees with the leaves changing colors. We had about 90 minutes to get to the park and back. Not an easy task with 20 small children, but do-able. We set out walking, then moved to speed walking, then when I noticed we might not make it back in time for the kids to catch the bus, we ran.


It's hard to see in this picture but Joe is carrying/running with Matthew. Matthew is by far the heaviest Kindergartner we have. He just could not keep up with the others, so Joe scooped him up and ran with him.  Matthew told the other kids he was flying. The next day Joe was sore. 

 I packed a small bag of Eddie's dry dog food so we could feed the fish. We were lucky enough to have some ducks come by and we got to feed them too. The kids LOVED it.

Steve- "I'm so tired, I can't wait to sleep on the bus" 

 Jayden got something stuck in his shoe. He stopped and refused to move until the issue was resolved. Of course that meant it was the perfect time for a picture according the Vicki, our photographer for the day. I swear nothing happens at BIS without a camera within reach. Joe and I didn't even think any of the Korean staff would go with us. Unfortunately as soon as we loaded up into the elevator, Vicki squeezed it. She doesn't really speak English, all she said was, "For picture", then held up the camera.

We all had a great time. We ran and played. I had the kids collect leaves for a future art project. I think the pictures speak for themselves.