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Meet Teaching in Progress


I am a wife and a mother of three boys, so I live in a house full of Y chromosomes.  I am the Queen of a very messy castle:)
My boys are now 6, 14, and 15.  I am torn between the world of first grade and high schoolers.  I suppose that's what happens when you are blessed with a little bundle of surprise baby at age 42!

I have been teaching for 20 years, the majority of that in first grade, until recently.  My principal decided that I must be a fourth grade teacher in disguise and moved me on up. It wasn’t been as dreadful as I thought and I  truly came to enjoy the new challenge.  But on to new challenges - next year I will teach Pre K.

All of my teaching experience has been in Title I schools.  I started out in an inner city school based in a housing project (click here to read about it) and now I am in a school just outside the city limits. Kids in our school face many challenges, chief among them - poverty. Many of my students know firsthand the pain of hunger, fear, loss, and chaos.

They are raised in families with two parents, step parents, single parents, incarcerated parents, and grandparents. They go home to houses, apartments, and sometimes motel rooms, to families of of 2 to 12. Often several families live in a space meant for one family so they do not become homeless. School is often the only safe and structured place they can go.

Even with so many challenges, the students still come to school each day with a smile, eager to have a great day!

My own middle son has Asperger’s, ADHD, anxiety, and is profoundly gifted. Our struggle to help him navigate through school, church, social experience, family life, etc, as well as helping our other two boys maintain normalcy, has had a powerful impact on my growth as a teacher.

My experience as a mom to a twice exceptional kid coupled with being a teacher with the special education collaboration class, led me to begin creating materials and resources for my students and soon my Teachers Pay Teachers store was born.  Most of my resources are geared toward behavior management or math, but I have quite a variety of offerings.

          
 
Be sure to connect with me on Facebook and Instagram for all the latest ideas, resources, freebies, and posts!



1 comment

  1. I couldn't agree with you more, behavior charts do not change behavior for the positive. I have been teaching Emotional Support students for 25 years. Over the years I have taught high school, middle school and I am now in an elementary school. My school also has adopted the Responsive Classroom philosophy. I love it! We use the Morning Meeting program every day. I have been using a colored level system as part of my PBSP (Positive Behavior Support Plan) for 6 years. When I started teaching at the elementary level, I was directed to use a monetary or point system to reward behavior. The problem I began to have was-what to do about the misbehavior that I wanted to deal with in the classroom, not call in the principal. I felt the students needed a visual system, to let them know where they stood. This was used in conjunction with play money the students earned throughout the day. I felt good for a long time because they earned more positives than negatives. However, I recently realized that I am getting more and more students identified with ADHD, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, Pervasive Developmental Disorder, but are demonstrating characteristics of Aspergers or are on the Austism spectrum. I have developed and taught countless lessons on social skills. Today when I read your opinion on why not to use behavior charts, the light bulb went on. I have been trying t teach children that do not understand social boundaries and social cues how to manage their calling out, tattling, inappropriate comments, and nothing seems to be working well consistently. Last Monday, frustrated, I decided to turn the behavior chart around backwards. I did not use it for three days. Instead of the daily behavior note color coded to match whether or not they had a Green-Good day, Yellow-warnings, etc. I used a white note. I think I will perminantly take the chart down and rethink my approach. I will be grateful to have the months off this summer to redo my PBSP for my classroom. We have a bank window to bank the money they earn every day. Students are learning how to manage a bank account balance sheet (math skills) and a Menu of Rewards to reward themselves at Choice Time. I also have a quiet corner with large stuffed animals, books, fidgets, etc. I look forward to creating a more positive environment for next year. Thank you so much for opening my eyes and my heart.

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