Friday, November 20, 2009


How sad is it that I went outside to run (even though I DESPISE running) and I couldn't even run ONE mile without stopping!?! What is wrong with me? I was 2/3rds of the way in and I got a awful one; I tried to jog and it pretty much impaled me from even doing that. Therefore, I have decided that I will do my best to at least run one mile three times a week. If I can't run a mile now, I'm going to be able to soon! =)

While having coffee with a friend, I realized that I often compare my spiritual journey with that of physical exercise and nutrition. Once you get in the habit of doing something running and reading scripture daily, life is good! But that ONE time you don't do it, the devil takes a hold of it and lets you know how good life is without it; e.g., without running, I have more time to do this or that, I needed to rest anyway, I'll pick it back up next week never comes. And the same with reading God's Word. Eh, I'd rather sleep that extra 15 minutes, I'll do it later. I'll really try next week.

I hate to say it, because I do it too, but I think that's a slap in the face! Reading God's Word is something that makes us stronger, we grow in the Lord, He speaks to us during that time; how can I possibly say, "you know, Lord, I appreciate everything you did for me on the cross and I truly do want to meet with you today, but I'll hit the snooze a few more times." Yikes. I do that. All the time. I'm not willing to let the Lord speak to me through His Word.

In the same way, I'm not willing to run or get in shape. I want to. I see the need to do it. But I choose not to. I know the benefits of it, but I'd rather do what I want to do.

--The Lord uses His daily Word to speak to us. Maybe the Lord will speak to me while I'm running or working out. You never know, and I'm not going to put limits on the way the Lord moves.

I think I'm just tired of pushing away the things that I KNOW are beneficial for my everyday life. I'm saying all this so that other people know what I'm struggling with and know that I'm trying to fix it! =) I will read and I will run. It's gonna be good. I need physical and spiritual exercise: reading His Word and running allow me to get both of the things I need!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

How Great is His LOVE!

The precious blood of Jesus Christ redeems
Forgiven I'm alive restored set free
Your majesty resides inside of me
Forever I believe
Forever I believe
Arrested by Your truth and righteousness
Your grace has overwhelmed my brokenness
Convicted by Your spirit led by Your word
Your love will never fail
Your love will never fail

I know You gave
The word Your only Son for us
To know Your name
To live within the Savior's love
He took my place
Knowing He'd be crucified
And You loved
You loved a people undeserving

This song "To Know Your Name," by Hillsong touches the strings of my heart! I cannot express the joy I have in listening to the beautiful lyrics of this song.

I am arrested by His truth and righteousness! What a beautiful thing to be arrested to, rather than my sin and iniquities?! Daily, His grace overwhelms my brokenness and I can only praise Him for loving me the way He does! He knew that He would be crucified before stepping foot on this earth, yet He lived a perfect life and gave it up for an undeserving sinner like myself. What a beautiful conviction. It rips me to shreds to attempt to understand such a love. My love for my husband will forever be trumped by the love of my Heavenly Father! And don't let me steer you wrong, I LOVE my husband! And I know he loves me too! To know that someone could love me in such a way to give up His son for me, that is truly baffling! How could I stand here and realize what He has done and not be in awe of His love? Shame on us for forgetting what the death on the cross really meant for us: LIFE and life to the FULLEST!

My prayer is that this song would continue to move us toward a life of pure, reverential worship of and to the Lord.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Classroom Management

Math Blog #5

Classroom management in Mrs. Sanders first grade class is a little difficult during her math time. The students are antsy after lunch and look forward to recess afterward; therefore, it is difficult for Mrs. Sanders to keep all students truly engaged in the lessons. To call on students during math time, Mrs. Sanders pulls sticks out of a mug and calls on the picked student. She also has students constantly move from their desks to the carpet because the students are in need of some time to be active.

Because her math period is rather lengthy, Mrs. Sanders has her students use the restroom after calendar time. The break up during the math time has benefits: the students are able to be active, Mrs. Sanders is given the opportunity to make sure that all things are lined up for her succeeding math lesson, and students are given time to ask any questions he/she may have from previous day's lessons, etc.

The math lesson itself is generally one in which is given straight from the textbook the students have at their desks. Mrs. Sanders will give them example problems before going to the book, and the students will have time to explore the given problems, and the class will reconvene to discover the different answers the students got. From there, Mrs. Sanders will have the students get out their math books and do the corresponding pages.

The thing I have noticed in her class is that she does utilize one of the talk moves that we have discussed in class: wait time. She allots time during the lesson for students to sit and think after solving the problem. I truly enjoy seeing this in Mrs. Sanders' class, because I can truly see the students' thoughts whirling around in their heads! It's such an exciting time for me because I can see the students processing their thoughts and spitting them out for the class to hear.

Math in Mrs. Sanders' class is a whirlwind of activity; be it through calendar time, Mad Minutes, or the lesson...all of the students are busy doing something. They may not be on task at all times, but Mrs. Sanders does make sure that all students are learning.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Talk Moves and Productive Talk

Math Blog #4

Before your observation:

1. Pick 2 of the 5 talk moves that Chapin introduces in Chapter 5 to observe and practice in your placement. Write a brief paragraph about what moves you have picked and why you have chosen to work on them. (1 paragraph)

--Wait time

Both of these talk moves are used in my placement classroom and I see that they are effective, but not in all circumstances. The role talk moves play in the classroom is a vital one in which students are really given the opportunity to either agree or disagree with another person's thought process and answer. Wait time is what I call "think time." It is truly a valuable time in which students gather their thought process and put it into words. If students are not given this opportunity, many will feel too embarrassed to put forth a contribution in the classroom. I believe that revoicing allows the teacher the opportunity to truly comprehend what the student is thinking and how they got their answer. This clears up any confusion between the teacher and the student, but also with the class.

If you are teaching or leading a small group :

2. Describe how you plan to implement the talk moves. Then describe how it went. Provide an example or two. Did anything happen that was unexpected? What would you do differently next time? (2 paragraphs)

During my small group lesson, I plan on presenting a word problem and asking the students to solve it. Upon the students answers, I will ask each student what they got as their answer, then I will revoice their answer--so as to check for my own understanding of the student's thought process. I will offer each student time to think about their answer and how they arrived there. Because this is something that they are comfortable with doing, it should be no problem for them to handle in the small group atmosphere.

When I presented the two word problems, my students were quick to ask questions. I was curious as to why there were doing that, simply because I knew that during our daily math warm-up, Mrs. Sanders gives the students a word problem similar to the ones I gave them.

"Jeremy has 6 cookies. He wants to share his cookies with his two friends, but he also wants to keep some for himself. How many cookies does each person get?" partitive division

"Jackie and Rachel love shopping. After going to the mall, they spent $5.50. They had $7.25 left. How much money did they start out with?" separate start unknown

I printed each of these questions out for my students and had them staple it in their notebooks. I instructed the students to highlight or circle the numbers they find in the problem, then they were to underline the question. This allowed them to solely look at the "important" information in the problem. I gave each student roughly five minutes to solve the problem and instructed them to represent the problem in two different formats. Mrs. Sanders asks the students to do this with their warm-up problem as well. After asking one student to show me her answer, she looked rather confused at her explanation on her paper; however, I tried revoicing what she told me. She simply looked at me, looked back at her paper, and then finally said, "I mean, I meant that you don't know how much they brought with them to the mall. That's what I need to figure out." By my revoicing of her "answer," she realized that she didn't set up the problem correctly and therefore couldn't answer the question correctly. After that, I read both questions again and offered the students several minutes to complete the problems. I asked another student how he would solve the first one. I gave him some wait time to gather his thoughts. After almost 10 seconds, he explained to the group that he had to draw out three friends and divided the six cookies between them. I was so excited when this occurred because he usually doesn't want to answer during our math time--I believe that the wait time and the smaller group facilitated his talking to the group.

If I were to do this differently, I would give the students different options for numbers to plug in. Rather than 2 friends, the students can choose from 3 or 4--depending on their level of comfort with manipulating numbers. I would also have given the students fake money--Mrs. Sanders didn't have any with her and I didn't think to bring in any. By bringing more manipulatives, it would have been easier for the students to see monetary value and the like.

I was thrilled that each student had the time to correctly answer each question and felt comfortable enough to express their own opinions regarding both word problems.