Dancing for Food

Overcoming the ballet body image.

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In our district, students have to take benchmark tests.  There are 4 math ones in total, given from September to March.  They’re supposed to be an indicator of how well our students will do on the state tests.

Today is the first of such benchmark tests.  I have a feeling the students do not like them (obviously), but as a teacher I really do.  Not because I’m mean (I swear I’m not!) but because it makes the day a lot easier for me.  I pick up the test in the morning, I give the test for 4 periods, I return the test, and then I go to dance.  I don’t have to do anything except sit and watch them take a test.  Is it boring?  Yes.  But is it a blessing to have a random day where I don’t have to do much?  YES.

It will also be interesting in a couple weeks to get the results back and see how well they’re doing.  It helps me figure out what stuff I need to make sure and review as the year goes on.

That being said, I love benchmark days.  Last night as I was mentally gearing myself up for getting up at 5 am to run 5 miles, I remember that it was going to be an easier day and was VERY excited.  You gotta love when the week gets broken up with a different kind of day.



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Meetings Meetings Meetings

Today has two meetings: one in the morning before school (7 am) and one after school (after dance production runs).

The morning meeting is for Algebra 2 and I’m the course lead, which means I plan the meeting.  This morning’s meeting is dealing with tests for the semester, figuring out what we need to spiral review on Mondays, and making sure we’re all on track with the pacing guide.

This afternoon’s meeting is for the Technology Committee.  We’re trying to update the school’s technology needs list so it’s current and reflects which technology the school wants to get first.  Personally, I’d love for all the kids to have iPads to use in class, but that’s a long ways away.  Too expensive.

Then I have ballet tonight.  Another long day.  But it’s ok.  It’s almost Friday and then this weekend is Kelly’s bachelorette party!  Speaking of Kelly, today is her birthday!

Happy birthday big sis!!!!!


Leftover “Pasta” and a Funny Cartoon

For lunch today, I finished off the zucchini pasta from the other night.  It’s the second day in a row I’ve had dinner leftovers instead of a sandwich!  Yesterday I finished off the quinoa salad that I made when Diana was here.

Yesterday’s Lunch


Today’s Lunch


I had an apple with lunch both days.

Mat sent me a pretty hilarious cartoon today:



I’m having a hard time working the blog into my new schedule.  Once I start to get it where it’s working better, I have a super busy couple of days and I miss a post.  Argh!  Any advice from those who work full-time and blog?

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That Was a Long One

I got to work around 7:20 this morning.  I taught 3 Algebra 2 classes in a row before lunch, all of which went well.  2nd period was a little chatty, I think because two of my 4th period girls transferred into that class.  I’m not super worried though because I now have NO PROBLEM moving them if they start to act up too much.  After lunch I taught my final Algebra 2 class of the day and then had my prep period.  That class was SUPER quiet, largely because it’s down to 14 students now.

During my prep I managed to get the majority of next week’s plans done, at least in the sense of what I’m doing.  I still have  few things to create including the quiz, but I also have a lot of stuff from the last couple years to pull from.

And then it was dance production.  We elected a captain and 2 co-captains, did a quick warm-up, and then stayed after school for 2 hours working on the dance for the assembly.  A girl from Think Together is doing most of the choreography because she started it in the summer, and I’ll fill in the gaps and clean it up when she’s not there.  It’s a pretty big relief to have her doing this dance so I can keep getting my brain organized for running a dance class on a school campus and such.  I’m also not used to choreographing jazz/lyrical so it’s nice to have a few weeks to get myself accustomed to it.

And then I got home around 6 pm.  It was a long day, but not a bad one.  I’m thankful that we won’t be staying late every day.  We’ll only stay until 5:30 on Mondays and Wednesdays, but on modified Mondays (which is 3 out of 4 every month) we’ll be done at 3:30 like usual.  Tuesdays and Fridays we’ll go til 4:30 at the latest, and on Thursdays I’m not going to keep them at all because we’re going to run the mile.  I figured that they’re kids and need to do their homework and have a life.  I also need to have a life.  So it’s a win-win.  🙂

All this dance production and concerts and church choir stuff has gotten me bitten by the performing bug.  Let’s just say I may or may not be slightly maybe thinking about trying to perform in a show in a few months…

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What Has Happened to my Picture Taking?

This is the only picture I took of my lunch today:



I also had half a pb&j and a baggie of cereal for breakfast. And coffee. Obviously.

So far the day has gone well. The Algebra 2 kids are doing well, paying attention, and I think they came into my class knowing more than the students from the last two years. This is huge.

One more math class period to go, then make copies for next week and hopefully check on the dance budget, then dance production. I’m so excited!!

After work I’m going to Karl Strauss for a little “yay we have tenure” celebration. I remember it happening last year and hoping all would go well and I’d get to celebrate this year. And I do! I won’t be staying long-I’m a bit tired from the first few days, but it will be nice to unwind and be celebratory.

Lunch is almost over-gotta check in dance shoe and bag prices!

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The Second Day

Oh my goodness, what a day!  But it was a good day.  My Algebra 2 classes were all well-behaved, and I’m hoping they stay that way all year.  We were reviewing order of operations, which I think they all found super easy.  Which is good.  Because they should.  Because if they’re in Algebra 2 and can’t use order of operations correctly, we have a problem.

Dance production today was FABULOUS.  The girls are so excited to “learn the basics.”  I gave them a few SUPER.  EASY.  ballet things to do, and they just ate it up.  They were so happy that they finally have a structured dance class.  Now, my job is to learn some more jazz and hip hop for them.


Tonight’s dinner is a salmon barbecue salad.  Mat made a couple of salmon patties and we chopped them up and tossed them with romaine lettuce, spinach, cucumber, bell peppers, broccoli, carrots, tomato, black beans, corn, shredded cheese, ranch, and barbecue sauce.


De. Lish. Us.  Yes, that was spelled oddly.

We also finished the leftover cake we gorged on last night:


Poor Mat has hardly slept at all the last two nights and might be getting sick.  He needs to get to bed early, and I never complain about extra sleep.  Good night!

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Dance Production Bags

Last night I designed the dance production duffel bags.  I’m kind of excited because I think I can get one for myself too.  🙂  I’m not going to show what they look like though until the girls have decided they like them and I’m able to order them.  I’m also working on figuring out what kind of shoes to get them – it all depends on what’s in the budget right now.  That’s on my to-do list for my prep today – hopefully nothing else comes up.

It’s funny.  Teaching dance is clearly going to make me more busy than last year, because they practice after school, but I’m actually excited.  Last night I realized i was actually looking forward to going to work today (well, almost lol).  I know, crazy right?  It’s because I had an overall good vibe today, and I feel much better equipped to handle any attitudes from my math students after last year.  I guess a bad class really is a learning experience?

As a “tease,” this is the quote I’d like to put on the dance bags:

“Dance is the hidden language of the soul.” ~Martha Graham

Omg, I am SO excited to teach these girls about ballet and ballerinas and modern and Martha Graham and the HISTORY of dance.  It’s so fascinating and I can’t wait to share it with them!  And they’re all so eager to LEARN – they’re like sponges!  Eeek!!

one of the more famous photos of Martha Graham