Monday, 29 April 2013

Life and Lessons in New Delhi, India

So my blog seems to have an identity crisis. It has changed it's appearance many times and is still figuring out it's personality ;)

Today, while trying to kill a black jumping spider, I stopped to think how my life has changed in the last 10 months since our family arrived in New Delhi. I have come to realize that in India there are only two things I can control: what I eat for dinner, and working out! So this post may be a tad bit long but I wanted to share 10 things I have learned in the last 10 months:

1. They grow 'em big in India. Lizards, snakes, spiders...whatever it is it will be big and it will probably be living inside your house!

This is Larry. He lives in our kitchen. From nose to tail he is the size of my forearm! 

2. India is full of beautiful colors! From saurees to spices, the colors here are vibrant and pleasing to the eyes.

3. Cleaning your house is literally impossible! No matter how much you dust, sweep, and mop you will never get the dust (or bugs) out of your house!

4. Every price is negotiable. The key word is "discount" and almost anything you want to buy will magically cost less. It's so wonderful.

5. Time doesn't matter...Literally! If someone says they will be somewhere at 5pm you can count on it being 8 or 9pm or perhaps even a day or two late. If a drive somewhere is suppose to take 30 mins you can guarantee that with traffic it will take over and hour; especially if you don't own your own car and are using an auto rickshaw. (Oh, and never forget your kindle and camera in an auto rickshaw :(

6. Everyday is some sort of holiday or festival! Fireworks, drums, singing, lights, and much more can be heard outside your window during the evenings. It's rather exciting to take a peak outside and watch.

7. Water is a luxury! I never understood how much I took water for granted until we moved here and had a few days without water pumping into our house. We have to buy bottled water from a store on our street and once or twice the store was all out so showers turned into baby wipes!

8. You can get just about anything delivered straight to your door! Mcdonalds, (I have acquired a taste for egg burgers) groceries, diapers, toiletries, you name it, straight to your door and delivery is free! :)

9. 90 degree weather is not hot. 118 degree weather is hot, especially when you are trying to buy veggies in a little street market with hundreds of other people pushing up against you!

10. You will never understand how good you have it until you come face to face with a street child in rags pulling on your clothes. For many people their only bed is a mat on the streets.

I have the incredible opportunity of teaching a girl who used to beg on the streets how to read. So while kids in America are complaining about going to school, a ten year old girl is saying that she is "living her good life" because she is learning how to read and write.

So despite the fact that there are really ugly bugs and lizards, and despite the fact that the power can be out for  most of the day, and despite the fact that water could possibly not pump for a few days, and despite the fact that my house often smells like the sewers, I have come to appreciate my time in India. Life is full of adventures and sometimes you don't truly find yourself until you embark on one.

So I have learned this about myself,

I love to teach; especially reading and language arts
I love children; even the broken-hearted and hurting
I enjoy cooking (India has some AMAZING recipes)
I love to create and be imaginative
I am an author; my mind is filled with stories that are just waiting to meet a pen and paper (or a keyboard and microsoft word)

What have you learned about yourself recently?

*Some of the pictures are my own while others are just stock photos. 

Sunday, 28 April 2013

Popcorn Palooza

Whew...I had a whirlwind weekend. On Friday, after enjoying popcorn, I had the idea to do a huge cross-curriculum unit on popcorn. I mean honestly, who doesn't love popcorn. Any time I bring popcorn to school, students from all grades follow their noses, end up in my classroom, and start drooling on my kids desks!

So...I started Friday night and I was totally hooked. I couldn't put my computer down! (Oh wait, I have a two year old and I had a dinner party on Saturday, so I couldn't put my computer down from 7pm until 12am) I have learned so much about popcorn it's incredible. Well, I finished tonight. My wonderful husband read through the whole thing. Then we toasted with some sparkling lemonade and consumed a large bowl of popcorn.

BEWARE: Just looking through this unit will create an un-quenchable hunger for popcorn, until you give in and eat some!!!

Here is a little peek at it:
A little background to popcorn.

Thanks to Yvonne Crawford, I am now totally hooked on math-booking prompts. I have recently started creating my own. They are actually a lot of fun to make. 
So then I got hooked on making glyphs as well. 

Some popcorn trivia.

Parts of speech sorting using popcorn boxes and popcorn shaped cards.

Try out some popcorn science experiments.

When doing experiments we must be sure to learn and use the scientific method. 

Tickets for coming to the big Popcorn Palooza at the end of the unit! 

Prize box for the end of the unit

There is so much more! I know my kids are going to be tickled pink to use this unit.

You can check it out at my store:

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Trip to the Planetarium

Today we took a field trip to see the Nehru Planetarium. This was the start to our unit on the Solar System. I am actually really excited about doing this unit. I love to look at the night sky and learn more about our universe.

Learning about the speed of light

Taking the Astronomy Quiz

And what field trip wouldn't be complete without the embarrassing sun in the teacher's face picture!

Thanks guys! haha
I can't believe that this school year is almost over! Our last day is May 28th and it's sneaky up on me really fast. I am excited to go back to the states to see my family for a few weeks but I am really going to miss my students. Having only 11 students has really given me the chance to know each of them personally. I have so many amazing memories with these kiddos. Some hilarious moments and some tearful moments. 3rd grade is amazing; such an awesome age. They can work independently and think critically but they still love to do crazy things and have a crazy teacher.

Sunday, 21 April 2013

Spring Production: You Are Special

This past week was really busy for me. We had our Elementary Show: "You are Special" by Max Lucado, on Friday. I have been teaching Ballet to four girls. They were the opening act. I was so proud. They have only been taking the class for 10 sessions and they were able to help choreograph and preform a dance!

Waiting for the music to start.

Unfortunately this is the only Ballet picture I could get my hands on right now. More "action shots" coming soon.

The amazing acrobats!

The Mayor and Punchinello 
The whole show was fabulous. The tickets sold out so the kids had 3 shows. That's a lot for the KG but they did a wonderful job.

Is your school doing a Spring Production? 

Friday, 12 April 2013

Birthday Sale

The past few days my 2 year old has been singing Happy Birthday to me. My 25th birthday is tomorrow and he has been really excited. Immediately after singing Happy Birthday he asks for birthday cake and candles. What else do you have to look forward to when you are 2?!

Just wanted to let you all know that I am having a Birthday Sale at my TPT store April 13th-14th. Please come check it out.

Thursday, 11 April 2013

Today was our last day of standardized testing! Woohoo! I think I am more relieved than my kiddos. Tomorrow we are going to do a little celebration. How do you celebrate the ending of standardized testing?

Just finished a new activity for my kids to help them with their discovery time. Check it out below:

You can grab it for free at MY TPT STORE

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Moving Right Along...

I must be the mom of a toddler if I have muppets and sesame street songs stuck in my head. :) DS has not been sleeping very well lately due to the heat but thankfully we got our AC up and running. It takes time, but things do eventually start moving right along.

We are almost finished with standardized tests. I think those wear me out more than the kids! Just by browsing around the room I can tell that they are doing a really awesome job! I am so proud :)

 We started doing What if... Wednesdays during our circle time. Today's questions was: What if you could write a best selling book. What genre would it be?

I'm interested to hear from you all as well!


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