Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Busy, Busy, Busy!

I haven't posted in a couple of days because I have been incredibly busy.

Data Teams

With school back in session, we are struggling to keep up with the new demands placed on us. Data teams are used to make data-driven decisions about education. Each teacher who teaches a specific subject is part of a team that produceds a pre-assessment, which is given to all students taking the course. Based on the results of the pre-assessment, the data team makes judgments about how much time needs to be spent teaching each of the Indiana standards that were covered in the pre-assessment. Strengths and weaknesses are analyzed and included in the planning of the unit.

After we lay out the next several days's worth of lessons, sharing resources, teaching tips, and experiences, the teaching (and hopefully learning) takes place. At the end of the agreed upon time, a post-assessment is given and results are analyzed. We reflect on the results and determine how successful the teaching has been.

Reports are made and minutes of meetings kept. And since I am the data coordinator for the entire building, I have to review the process for each team to make sure that everyone is clear on what is expected of them.

The Secret Project

As I have alluded to before, I am working on a project. I am creating a resource for teachers and students that I hope will be successful and profitable. My progress over the summer stalled out, as I just plain ran out of gas. But now that we are back in school, I see things every day in my teaching that need to be added. This has stirred my creative juices again, and I am hard at work on new art and pages. And my notes pile up with the things that I'm not fast enough to include.

Sera

Sera continues to be an absolute wonder. Not only can I not believe I'm a father, but I can't believe how much this child loves me and I, her. Every day when I pick her up she gives me the biggest toothy smile her face can hold. When I put her to bed at night, I feel like I need a few more hours with her because she runs and then squats and hides in the corner behind her crib so that Daddy can't find her to put her in. This past weekend went by entirely too quickly. Every time she learns something new that I teach her, it's like a piece of me becomes immortal, and a piece of my father and grandmother is forever preserved in her.

Cooking

Since we've been back at work I've been trying to do my share of the cooking. While Magi and Sera were away in Alabama visiting family, I rediscovered how much I enjoy doing it. And the pleasure is doubled when cooking for others. I made spaghetti tonight, and while that doesn't sound very exciting, I tried to make it differently. I browned ground sirloin in a cast iron skillet with diced onions, as usual. But I added green peppers and chopped pepperoni to the mix before adding sauce. Back in the 80s when I worked at Pizza Hut, we reheated pre-cooked spaghetti with a slice of pepperoni in the basket to give the pasta a little extra spice.

Magi sure liked it. She commented that I had outdone myself and said it a couple of times. Sera found it a little spicy, however, and fell back on the mac and cheese that I made yesterday.

So basically, I haven't been able to blog as much lately because I've been living life. Since the death of Mike Wieringo a week ago Sunday, I've been trying to enjoy it as much as possible. You just never know.

I'll try to get back to an every-other-day schedule this week.

1 comment:

Magi said...

He's right. It was really, really tasty. We've been struggling on the dinner front lately with too many nights of let's feed Sera and we'll eat sandwiches. Jim made a great French bread pizza the night before.