Hope you had a lovely week. I’m happy to report that this week was pretty great. We’re almost ready to send off our students to second grade. But not quite yet. This week, we started to wrap up our unit related to expression and feelings. This unit is fun because it’s not as content-heavy as our other units. On Friday we made “relaxing jars” where you put glitter inside of a water bottle. When a student is angry, upset or frustrated, they can shake their bottle and calm down as they watch the glitter swirl around and eventually settle. We also used “breathing buddies”. The kids had to bring in a small stuffed-animal. They lay down on the floor with the buddy on their stomach, and they relax as we give them breathing instructions. They watch as the breathing buddy moves up and down. Since everyone is a bit irritable and tired at this point in the year, this unit is perfect for us.
I’m happy to report that our student with cancer returned to school on Friday. It was an emotional welcoming back but the kid’s were over-the-moon to see her. They wouldn’t leave her side for the rest of the day. She is doing well; they removed all of the flesh from her finger and took the skin from her arm to put back onto the finger. They conjoined it to her middle finger for now. In about a week and a half, they will have to go back to Boston to separate the two fingers. The doctors wanted her to come back to Chile to see her friends and continue with her normal life. The parents don’t have any financial concerns so they were willing.
On Friday, we had our Last Chapel ceremony. This is a Santiago College tradition where the first-graders present a flower bouquet or small banner to the seniors dressed in their caps and gowns. It requires a lot of organization and practice for the little ones, as the ceremony is expected to go off without any incidents or mess-ups. The kids had to come to school in a clean uniform, with only blue or white hairbands and completely white shoes. Unfortunately, many of the parents disregard this request and send them to school with black shoelaces, or shoes with big pink Nike signs. As a result, us first grade teachers have to either find a second grader they can switch shoes with, or actually paint their shoes. A little psycho…but welcome to private school. I spent the entire Friday morning painting shoes and making sure my group was in the right order.
^^Tape and paint
^^ The kids have a day where they get to know the seniors so it's not so scary.
^^ The first grade teachers are responsible for getting the flowers and creating the bouquets.
This weekend, the gringos celebrated Thanksgiving. We have a gringo group that gets together for major holidays. It’s nice to have a group of people in the same boat as you –away from their families. This was my first Thanksgiving alone this year. I felt a little sad missing out on my family get-together, but since I was so busy at school, the holiday passed relatively unnoticed.
^^ I somehow found myself sitting at the kids' table...
Each person brought something to contribute to the lunch. In the end, we had turkey, green-bean casserole, mac & cheese, mashed potatoes, stuffing, pumpkin pie, pumpkin-spiced muffins and salad. I’d say we did a pretty good job! I made myself in charge of drinks, as the easy things were already taken ;)
Today, Benja, Fran and I went to La Feria de Sanguche -the Sandwich Fair. Need I say more? It was in one of Santiago's most beautiful parks. It was filled with over 25 different food trucks. It was a great atmosphere and gorgeous day. I enjoyed a spicy cheeseburger.
I was doing math groups and one of the questions required the kids to explain their answer. One of my students told me he was finished and showed me what he wrote: “Yes, I think.” I told him he needs to write what he thinks, to which he replied “No Miss, I think in my head”
I celebrated Thanksgiving with my kiddos this year, and we talked about what it means to be Thankful. We went around the class saying what we are thankful for. One student said, “I am thankful that I have all of my body-parts, like my legs and stuff”. Valid answer.
Another student chimed in, “Yeah, not everybody has legs. Like rocks don’t have legs”
Before the Last Chapel ceremony, there was a lot of waiting around. The kids kept asking me “Miss, when are we leaving”. Finally, I just kept saying “5 minutes” even though I had no idea when we were leaving, since they don’t know how to tell time.
Dani was explaining to me the procedure our student went through in Boston and she told me “First, they removed all of the fur on her finger”. She meant flesh!
Benja was telling me "sometimes we call female-people Mercedes". "Female-people" had me laughing out loud!
^^One of the things she is thankful for is "for my good body"
^^ This man has no shame
^^ When you start typing a word, the ipad starts to guess what you're trying to write. One student took advantage of this... He wanted to say "I am a risk-taker when I ride the water bike."
^^ This friend glued his turkey to the desk by accident....