May 4, 2014


That's what I'm feeling right now. 

A whole lot of relief.

This week was pretty much full of stress, anxiety and nerves. That's because we took the TCAP tests. The tests we've been preparing for all year. 

While I pretty much despise the very idea of this god-awful test, I have to make those kiddos think it's the most fun and exciting thing we've ever done. Yeah, that's a little hard. 

^That's the idea, right? Well, I won't go so far as to say they told me they LOVED it, but several of them did tell me it was the best week ever, so I guess that's good. I'm glad someone was having fun... ha! 

I feel that this picture perfectly sums up my week:

A cherry limeade from a sweet co-worker, chocolate, test booklets and a stress ball. A stress ball that was intended for a kid. Which, kind of breaks my heart in half that we have to give kids stress balls in third grade. But, she preferred the basketball stress ball... so that left this one for me! Perfect. 

I tried reallyreallyreally hard not to look at their answers. Because, I mean, you can't say anything. You want to stand behind them and say "Noooo!!!! Don't you remember? We practiced that 2,365 times! Yesterday alone! Aghhhh!!!!!!"

But, you can't. You can't say a word. So, like I said, I try not to look. But, it's really hard. Because it's human nature to want to see how they're doing. I have no idea how they did. I saw a LOT of right answers, and I saw a BUNCH of wrong answers. Hopefully, we'll come out of it all with more of the right answers than the wrong answers.

But, either way, I'm proud of those kids. So incredibly proud. Because, right or wrong, they tried their very, very best. All of them. I know that for a fact. And, really, that's all I ask of them. So, I'm good. Whatever the outcome. 

To celebrate the end of testing, I got them cupcakes Thursday night. Then, I had my own little celebration and ate two (!!!) of them before bed. Listen, people. I told you I was stressed! Luckily, no one noticed the missing cupcakes (#nailedit) and all were happy the next day. 

Since we used balloons to countdown to TCAP, I decided to use balloons for our "closing ceremony" celebration. I had this brilliant idea. Truly, it was one of my best. I thought it would be so fun to give them balloons to represent TCAP and then let them go outside and we would be "letting go" of all our worries and stress about the test. Like I said, brilliant. Right? 

It was really cute. And the kids were "with me." All about it. But, know what I forgot? Balloons only fly away with helium. (I blame the stress of the test on this unfortunate oversight and I'm incredibly thankful that neither balloons or helium appeared anywhere on said test. As far as I know. I told you, I tried not to look.) So, all the kids let go of their balloons and they just crashed to the ground. Whomp, whomp. 

Luckily, I'm a teacher and I think quickly on my feet. So, before they even realized anything was wrong, I yelled "You have to chase them down and stomp them like you stomped the test!" And they all started running around and stomping the balloons and no one was the wiser. Except you, dear friend. Shhhh. Don't tell the 8-year-olds, okay? 

And, if you ever get to thinking that 8-year-olds are big kids, well, you're wrong. They're still little. After our balloon debacle, they BEGGED me to play on the little playground. Our school has two playgrounds and we always play on the big one because it's more convenient to our classroom. Well, since they had just endured a four day test and I had no intention of going back inside to teach, I said sure. But, instead of heading to the little playground, they all ran to a teeny tiny slide. You know, the kind of slide that you might find in a church nursery. In the infant room. That kind. And, when I say run, I pretty much mean "broke into a sprint, complete with screams and squeals and maybe some pushing, but I can't be sure." Then, they proceeded to slide down it one by one. Y'all, I don't even know where this slide came from. Someone probably just dumped it on school property because that happened to be closer than the landfill downtown. I mean, just look at this thing...

Innocence. That's what that is. 

Also, this...

A kid in my class this week asked me how I knew that Finley was a girl. I had NO response. Ha! I wasn't sure what to say. So, I finally asked him how he knew that he was a boy. Which, in hindsight, was really stupid and risky and I don't know what I was thinking. He thought for a few seconds and then said "Well, because the doctor told my mom I was a boy!" So, I said a silent prayer of thankfulness and then said "The vet told me Finley was a girl." Crises over, people. Crises over.

So, when I got home Friday, I grabbed 3 aspirin and Finley and headed to my parents for the weekend. We had some family come in town to meet Ryan Grace. The house has been crowded, loud and crazy with 8 adults, four kids and two dogs running around. Jealous, aren't you? 

Baby K was infatuated with Ryan Grace. Or the bouncy seat. One or the other. Hard to say. 

Ryan Grace was pretty infatuated with the seat herself! 


Baby yawns. So funny!

This morning, we went shopping. Abby was ready to go, y'all! And, she picked out her FABULOUS Uncle Si shirt. Ha! 

Baby K hung out up here...

while Charles was yelling " Wooooook, Windsssayyy!!!! We awe hiding in ouwwww secwet spooooot! Take ouwwww pictuwe!!!" How do you say no to that? 

Then we came home and spent the afternoon on the porch where Charles got all up-close and personal with my leg. Ha! But, really, I didn't mind. He's pretty cute ;) 

It was a good weekend. I hope yours was, too! Now that testing is over, maybe I'll have more time to blog. I hope so! I'm going to try really hard to her back in the groove. 

Hold me to it, okay?


Angela Hevron said...

Oh girl. I totally get you about the testing stress. It's so sad that this testing has completely changed our educational system and the way we teach. And the fact that 8 year olds have to have a stress ball. So sad. I'm glad I didn't grow up in today's world.
What state do you live in? I'm from Texas but am currently teaching in Korea, so I have a break from all those tests for a year. I don't miss them.
Southern Fried Teachin’

Anonymous said...

You know you're a good teacher when you can think on your feet like you did with the balloon episode. Way to go! Love the adorable Ryan Grace photos too.

Anonymous said...

I miss your blogging. Anything new?