One Final Quarantine Blog

Hello TEPers!!

Happy Saturday!! I wanted to post one more time before I hand the reins over to Ty next week.

I know this has been a running theme behind all of my posts this week, but I hope that I have highlighted the fact that I hope everyone is staying happy and healthy during these uncertain times.

This week has been very hard for me. At the beginning of the week, my family lost our dog of 9 years rather unexpectedly. Definitely not what you want to go through during such unsettling time such as quarantine. But nonetheless, I have continued to find normalcy and things that make me smile each and everyday to get me through.

Today the piece that made me smile was me finishing my 4th book in the span of a week!! No better time to crush multiple pieces of literature than quarantine! For anyone that wants to stay up to date with what I am reading, so far I have read Of Mice and Men (for my kiddos), Daisy Jones and the Six, Red White, and Royal Blue, and Little Fires Everywhere. I highly recommend all of these !!!

Other than that, I have been able to stay sane through constant conversations with my SP Lauren, and through the app Flipgrid, as Burncoat has set up a site where students and teachers alike can upload videos of them dancing, singing, or just being goofy. This has really allowed me to feel apart of the community still during a time where I am missing the classroom more than anything.

During these weird times, I hope that everyone is staying healthy and safe, and that we are all finding our own light in these dark times. I look forward to continuing my routine of this week into next, seeing all of my classmates and TEP pals’ faces in class again, and finishing and starting yet another book.

Keep looking forward friends!!! I’ll be passing the baton on to Ty now. Can’t wait to hear how his weeks have been going!!

Thanks for keeping up with me this week 🙂

Elena

Friday – Quarantine Style

Happy Friday, TEPers! Do fridays still exist in quarantine?

I hope you all have started to settle into somewhat of a routine at this point. As we near the end of our second week since we left Holy Cross, while I still feel loads of apprehension and anxiety, I can’t help but feel sort of at ease with my new routine and schedule. I look forward to what each day brings!

For example, yesterday I got to “see” all my lovely TEP pals yesterday for our first ever virtual class on Google Meet! While it was clearly not the same as in person, seeing their faces and hearing everyone’s voice really made things feel normal again for a second.

Aside from classes becoming more of a routine, the other thing I look forward to everyday is reading! The book I am reading right now is fantastic and I can’t put it down!! And with all the sunshine we’ve been having lately, there is nothing better to do than sit outside and read!

I hope that you are all able to find some positivity in these weird crazy times, and that you are settling into a routine you enjoy!! Once again, stay safe and healthy, an talk to you guys soon 🙂

Elena

TEP Blog – Quarantine Style!

Happy day… 5? 14? 36? of quarantine? Honestly who knows who can keep track of the days anymore at this point.  Regardless of what day this is for you, I hope everyone is staying safe and staying healthy during this weird time.

So, as I am sure you could have guessed, life in TEP is looking a little different now a days thanks to COVID-19. Due to that this blog is probably gonna look a little different than what our readers are used to! But nevertheless, we keep moving forward!

Life in quarantine has been very weird to say the least. The first couple days did not consist really of any TEP related work, so I will try and not bore you with the details of the seven netflix shows that I binged through (but if you have watched Love is Blind leave a comment I’m obsessed).

Days are obviously blurring together, and that is why I must apologize for getting my first blog up so late!! BUT as I said, life must continue even in this weird time! So I have really tried to start developing a routine. Every morning I wake up, have breakfast, get dressed and then I read. As an English teacher, I am ashamed to admit that I have not been reading nearly as much as I should have. So with all this free time on my hands I figured it’s time to start practicing what I preach!

Aside from that, I continue to be thankful for technology during all of this because I have been able to stay in contact with my Supervisors Lauren and James through facetime and calling, and I have even been able to see some of my kiddos from class through this platform Burncoat is doing called Flipgrid!

All in all, life is weird right now but I am thankful for the moments that I have had that make everything seem normal and for the moments that I have been able to smile and laugh through all of this!

Keep looking for positive moments throughout all of this TEPers! Talk soon 🙂

 

Elena

Monday + Tuesday

Monday

Happy Tuesday everyone! This week has been a crazy one for sure! Yesterday my supervising practitioner was out so I had to teach all 4 of her classes. We were doing MCAS review on the chrombooks and my students did pretty well with it! After school I went to Trader Joe’s to get some food the week (Trader Joe’s frozen foods are a life saver while student teaching fyi). When I got home I had some time to relax and get stuff ready for school the next day. Last night was also Bachelor Monday so I had to dedicate 2 hours of my night to watching it. (Sorry Monday is lacking photos I’m not good at remembering to take them)

I love Pilot Pete with all my heart
Tuesday

Today when I got to school I was surprised to learn that my supervising practitioner was out again today so I had to teach all 4 classes. Luckily, I have first block free so I had time to make worksheets. Today we started a new topic in our proportions unit of solving proportions using the “is-of” method. It went really well and my students picked it up right away!

All four of my classes went smoothly and got through everything we needed to! After school I stayed after with two students. They wanted some extra practice with solving inequalities and needed help figuring out when to flip the inequality sign when solving. I re-taught them the rules and the ideas behind inequalities then we took the time to do some practice problems. By the end of the hour they were getting all the questions right and had a better grasp on the concept!

My classroom
Note sheet I made my students who needed help with inequalities

I came back to campus after school and was greeted by my roommate watching the news. It is great to live with another person in TEP as they truly get what you are going through (and it is nice to be awake with someone else at 5:30am).

Carley watching the news about coronavirus

To end my day, my roommates and I will be watching the season finale of the Bachelor (Team Madi or Team Hannah Ann?). Check back to the blog tomorrow to see how I feel about the ending!

Victoria’s Takeover

Spring Break Recap

Hello everyone! I will be taking over the blog this week and I can’t wait to share my week at Burncoat Middle with you! For today’s post, I am going to recap my last week. It was Holy Cross’s spring break last week so the TEP students were here on campus as WPS still had school. However, we managed to make the best of the week! On Monday, Ty, Elena, Carley and I decided to go out to dinner to celebrate making it through Monday.

Carley, Ty, and Elena

After Monday it was a very hectic week of editing resumes and cover letters as we are all in the process of applying to jobs. We also had a unit plan due on Thursday for class. However, once Thursday came we decided to go to the Worcester Public Market!

Ty, Elena, Carley, Hiram, and Sumner

Our friend Sumner joined us as she was on campus for the second half of spring break! It was so fun to be able to hang out and catch up about how our student teaching lives are!

That is all for this post! Stay tuned to see what my week at Burncoat is like!

TGIF: Learning and Engagement Strategies

How do I teach my students how to appreciate nature, cultivate a sense of wonder and see God in nature?  Well, today, I took my 10th morality class for a short while outside as part of the unit of creation! It was a little chilly, but the sun was out, and the birds chirped away.  They meditated on creation using the psalms and their five senses.

For my scripture class, I have wanted to make it more engaging. Teaching the girls about something that was written three thousand years ago and how the Biblical text is still very much relevant requires creating personal experiences.

Out of this desire, I had a prayer activity. I led students in a Lectio Divina  (Divine Reading) on a section of the Book of Lamentations in the school’s chapel. Not everyone stayed focused, but a couple of minds and hearts were won over. In reflection of the experience, some students referred back to their Do-Now without me prompting them and asked critical questions about the relationship between God and the Israelites and if their unique bond is still applicable in the present age. This connection was progress!

Between classes, I planned lessons, of course, and looked forward to a nap. When I arrived at my dorm room after a day at Notre Dame Academy, I treated myself to a muffin and headed to bed.

It was a long, busy week, but  I hope you enjoyed reading a tidbit of my teaching experience.

 

P.S. Holy Cross’ spring break was this week, so campus life was pretty much dead.

 

Highlighting Thursday: Meditation, Babies and Class

I can highlight how my Thursday went in four words– meditation, babies, and class.

For my only class on Thursday, held in the morning, I taught on Lent and led my seventh-grade students in a guided meditation of Jesus washing the disciples’ feet. As a Catholic educator, I want to cultivate the practice of prayer with students and, obviously, teach them to look at faith from an academic lens.

The feedback I received from the students, like “let’s do it again, it was peaceful” to “I really felt like I was there and Jesus was in front of me,” made me genuinely smile.

For the rest of the day, I had the enjoyment of seeing many babies. What I mean by that is that the twelfth-grade class, as part of a psychology course, were given dolls to take care of. It was fun hearing how they named their babies and the different ways they clothed and carried them, even during class.

When I arrived at Holy Cross from Notre Dame, I headed straight to my practicum, my only seminar class for this week. I always enjoy sharing and hearing how the passionate, mighty TEP teachers are doing in their classes.

When I returned to my apartment, I can promise that I was tired, but felt blessed at how my teaching experience has been going.

 

Sorry, no pictures today. I forget to take some.

Roxana’s Gallery Tuesday!

Good day! Today I only had one block, a 90-minute class.  With my seventh graders, we (my co-teacher and I) finished the unit and reviewed on the Holy Spirit for their quiz on Thursday. I named the review game “Jeopardy with a Twist. ” I slipt the students into four groups, and depending on the category, they had to write, act, or draw the response. 

7th Grade Classroom

 

For the rest of the day, I worked on lesson plans and mostly reflected on how I could include more engaging activities for my 11th-grade scripture class.

Coming to Holy Cross campus,  I was greatly satisfied to find Cool Beans opened; I ordered my small latte and stayed working in Hogan until I was kicked out.

When I finally decided to take a break from school work, I washed my dishes, made lunch for the next day, and folded my laundry.

 

A not-so-well light tabernacle

Sometime between waiting for the poblano peppers to sweat in the plastic bag and packing lunch,  I went to the chapel to spend time with the Lord, because why not.  Afterall as a religion teacher, I can’t give of my cup if it’s not full (Biblical reference).

My big cup of smoothie

 

 I also made a smoothie, which turned out smooth, sweet, and tasty. After I packed my lunch. I decided to head straight bed!

 

 

 

Roxana’s Wednesday Weather

It was crazy weather outside,  but nature gave me some great ideas.

In the morning, as I delivered a lecture on the Book of Jeremiah, it started snowing! It only lasted for about 15 minutes. In the afternoon, while I attempted to answered questions on heaven, loving God, and where all animals and plants fit into the picture of the afterlife, the sun shone brightly strong, with occasions of wind sweeping into the classroom.

Chilly feels

For my scripture class, I want to bring the practice of Lectio Divina (Divine Reading) and find something else to do while the computer keeps failing us. For my morality class, now that we are in the unit of creation, I want to share with them the experience of meditating with nature. What better way to address these ideas than to take the classroom outside.

I heard it’s supposed to be sunny on Friday, so we will see how it goes!

Stuffed poblano peppers with tomato sauce and broccoli

By the way, my lunch, chiles rellenos (stuffed poblano peppers) was filling and spicy but just needed a bit more salt, haha.

Roxana’s Monday!

 

St. Julie is the foundress of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur.

One of the first things I see when entering Notre Dame Academy is the Notre Dame seal along with a statue of St. Julie with a girl.  When I ride alone in the Holy Cross van, I arrive at Notre Dame from Holy Cross around 7:30 a.m. This week, because of the Holy Cross spring break and the few people left on campus,  I will enter the school grounds with a bit of extra time for making copies and looking over my lesson plans.

Today, in two of my three classes, we started new units, which means I spent most of my weekend lesson planning and going into the week with little sleep.  My 10th and 11th-grade morality and scripture classes were back-to-back which meant that after 11:00 a.m., I had the rest of the day to check papers.

The greatest highlight during the school day was my morality class. Professor Roche from the religious studies department came to observe me and I received some great feedback after class. During the lesson, which is the first on the unit “respect for creation,” I had a student asked me, “Do dogs go to heaven?”  After my response, I  had to use a couple of attention signals to have the class settled down. 

10th Grade Morality Class

Next lesson, as a promise to my students to touch on this topic again, I will explain the difference between souls and spirits. Even though the girls became a bit chaotic, I am glad to say that at least this reaction showed that they were invested in my lecture. They also managed to remain quiet for the remainder of the period while engaged in independent reading.  Two points for me!

After returning to Holy Cross, I took a long-needed nap. I woke up four hours later. Now, I am headed to lesson plan for my seventh-grade class tomorrow.