To say summer flew by would be the understatement of the year. Life took over once again, and next thing I knew it had been another month since I last blogged. I know, not exactly an award winning performance since ECMP wrapped up (sorry, Dean!). But I'm a glass-half-full kind of gal, so I am optimistic that with internship getting underway this week, blog posts will begin to flow like lava. So, what have I been up to since July 11? Let's see. I wrapped up my summer with Ta-Wa-Si Recreation mid-August and am seriously missing those kids. It was such a pleasure to see those smiling faces every day and to spend my afternoons soaking up the sun and the sound of children's laughter. Nothing beats that! We visited beaches, the QCX, went rock climbing and swimming, made corn husk dolls, and wrapped up the year with a day at IPSCO playing and exploring. Best.Summer.Ever.
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Our Humble Abode
On the personal front, my partner and I sold our home and purchased a new (to us) one! It is a perfect blend of old and new without sacrificing any of the charming character. I am not generally a believer of fate, but after this whole process, I may be a convert. We have been browsing for our dream home for years. When I say that, I literally mean YEARS. Since we were in the tricky position of buying and selling, we had to be sure that there was a home we really wanted before we listed, so we could avoid being caught in a position where our condo was sold and we were forced to buy something to avoid becoming homeless. When this house came on the market, it was way over priced. But as days turned into months and the price slowly came down, our interest began to climb.

Then one day, in a whirlwind decision, we prepped our home for a sale, hired an agent, looked at the property, fell in love, listed our condo, put in an offer contingent on the sale of our home, and began the waiting game. This is where I will say my belief in fate was altered. This house was literally everything we wanted and so we were nervous about how long it would take to sell ours and the looming potential that another offer would come rolling in leaving us with no choice but to walk away. Our condo came on the market on a Wednesday and I waited all day for someone to call. That night I got my first call to show the place. Hooray! The next day I received another call. And another one. And then another! We ended up with five showings and three offers on the first day. One week later everything was done and this gem was ours. Now we wait a little more until our possession date in late September - a much less stressful wait!

While I am waiting to move, I will be busy prepping and planning for internship. Last week my coop and I participated in Internship Seminar. It was three long days spent getting to know one another and what this whole process will be about. We came up with a way that will work for our unique programs for me to gradually take over the classroom. Just having an idea of what my initial classroom duties will be has me feeling more at ease about this whole process. We are officially back to school tomorrow and I am looking forward to getting started.

I'm not sure how to describe it, but I feel as though things are really coming together. It's verging on scary how well things are falling into place. It almost has me thinking that my luck must be on the brink of running out. But until then, I will relish in the awesomeness that is my life right now!

 
 
The end of my semester has come and gone.  My final marks have all been posted and yet I still have this anxious feeling in my guts that I have something due.  I wonder when that feeling will subside and give way to the freedom that is my reality and allow me to actually enjoy my summer?  My semester proved to be fruitful in more than just a learning sense.  In fact, things almost seem too good to be true right now.  One of my instructors has moved on from her role as classroom teacher and into the role of consultant with the Ministry of Education and she generously donated all of her classroom resources to me.  I have a bajillion boxes to go through and decide what to keep and what to toss, but I am so grateful for the offering because it can be expensive for a new teacher to go out and purchase these things.  Another one of my instructors happened to also be a superintendent with the school board I am hoping to work for in January and has provided me with some advice for my internship as well as a foot in the interviewing door.  Although none of this guarantees me a job, I am feeling optimistic about my future career.  

I started work this week at the Ta-Wa-Si Recreation program.  I am working the luxurious hours of 1 - 5 and spend the better part of my day outside, engaging with most of the same children I have spent the last 6 months working with.  I enjoy that I can say, "I love my job" and mean it.  You would have to meet and get to know the children I spend my days with to get it.  They are such a cool bunch who continue to humble me with their perspectives.  I have been working to find camps and activities of interest to connect the children to so that they can take advantage of the programming that is available to them.  I thought I had a basketball camp lined up for a group of boys who love to shoot hoops and played on the school team, but some issues have come up causing us to look elsewhere. The YMCA is really great about making things work for these children so I am hopeful we can find something.  I actually have to deliver the bad news to them today that the camp we had been talking about is now a no-go.  Hopefully the fact that we are going swimming this afternoon will provide some sort of silver lining to the day, as I know they are going to be disappointed.

On a completely different note, this morning I committed myself to blogging and visiting my neglected Google Reader.  Check and check!  I had about 150 things that I had missed since I looked at it last.  I am glad I scrolled through instead of marking everything as read because I found a really neat resource that I want to share with my fellow primary teachers.  It was a post from Amanda at One Extra Degree about a resource she is selling over on TeachersPayTeachers.  I had purchased her pirate themed mapping package during my pre-internship and loved her ideas, so when I saw her dinosaur themed word-work bundle, I was equally enthusiastic to share.  The resource she has created is geared toward grade-threes, however I can see it working for my kinders in the fall.  I am envisioning a centre with buckets of sand or dirt and rakes for the children to "dig-up" their laminated popcorn or sight words.  Check it out and leave a comment about how you might use it in your classroom!  
 
 
I have had a very busy week already and it is only Tuesday.  But after my quiz tomorrow night I will finally be able to breathe a little more which will hopefully inspire more blogging because as of late, I have had nothing but presentations, exams, and papers on the brain.  On the brighter side, tomorrow morning I am meeting with my coop and hanging out with her kindergartens over at Henry Braun.  I have a really great feeling about spending my upcoming semester with her and am confident that I am going to learn so much that I will use later in my career.

On a side note, I had an interview today with the YMCA's Camp Ta-Wa-Si summer program.  I only I wish I would have found this article from The Onion earlier today so I could have prepped my handshake.
 
 
Whenever I tell people I am in the primary education program, I am often met with a response that includes some form of "it takes a special kind of person to work with youngsters" or "you must be crazy".  Sure kids come with their downfalls like their mysterious affliction of jam hands - a medical condition striking children that causes their hands to attract sticky substances which is then deposited on just about everything - but they also come with a fresh perspective and a whole lot of laughs. Today at work we had the kids select and assemble a foam friend.  You are probably asking yourself, "What is a foam friend and how do I get one?"  Basically you get a set of foam pieces in a bag accompanied by a set of instructions, and with a little glue, some patience and the magic words, abracadabra, you end up with either a foam lizard, turtle, frog, or snake to call your own.  The program I work for offers after school programming with extra support in the areas of social skill building, and literacy/numeracy development.  Activities like this work because the kids have to read and follow the directions, they provide a goal or end product to work towards, and they allow them to be successful.  Today this exchange happened between E (age 8) and J (age 5):

E: (gluing the spots on her foam frog friend)

J: "Hey!  Why your frog has huge pimples on its back?"

That simple question sums up why I choose to work with littles.  It is because their imaginations can take things in a direction our adult minds could have never dreamed of.  I love my job!