Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Torture Tuesday!

Pure torture today!
As I said yesterday, I am back at work this week for professional development. Today I was super excited about today's agenda because it was a seminar about differentiation and focused on GATE (gifted and talented education) students, which is definitely where I need to be developed professionally.
Let me give you a little background on our school before I explain the torture... We have students of all abilities in our classes. No one gets "pulled out" for services, we do it all together; learning side by side. We have students who are typically developing, gifted students and students with special needs. I have a co-teacher who plans with me, teaches with me and assesses with me (and her 3 other classes). She is a special education teacher and I am a general education teacher. I LOVE my school! I love what we do for our students, especially those with special needs. But I also love the things we do for our other students as well. One area where I am pushing myself to learn more of is extension and enrichment. We have students who come to kindergarten who have severe disabilities, who have mild/moderate disabilities, who have gone to preschool, who have never been in a classroom and some who can read well above grade level. How can I extend and enrich my curriculum, my lessons, to best meet all students' needs? I want to focus my attention on the students who can read above grade level because I do not want them to be bored and unchallenged while I am teaching the letter sounds to the rest of my class. SO, this professional development today was PERFECT for me and my kindergarten team, or so I thought...
The presenter was as sweet as can be and was full of fantastic ideas but none of them applied to kindergarten. NONE. I was trying desperately to take one of her examples and ideas and try to modify it to fit kindergarten, couldn't do it! UGH! She spoke a lot about 1-8 grades and never really mentioned kindergarten. Ever. She would say, "This is a great strategy used by my first, second, third grade clusters." Sigh. Pouty faces all around this kindergarten team. I look around the room at the nodding heads of the 3rd grade teachers and the forth grade teachers and the sixth, seventh and eighth grade teachers. Behind me are some slightly more interested second grade teachers. Me? I'm wiggly, hot, bored and creating a mile long to-do list in my head. Yesterday, our administrator gave us a strong talking to about not bringing in our laptops to the seminar because, "while I don't doubt you're taking notes, it's too easy to get distracted." Drats. He's right. Double drats. I felt like a kindergartener when a lesson goes on a little longer than needed: Bored and wiggly. Unfocused, distracted and distracting. BUT I"M NOT COMPLAINING! lol. I am, aren't I? Man! I blew it already! Well there's always tomorrow...

Here's 2 questions for you...
1. What has been your most torturous seminar or workshop? Did something not really apply to you but you had to be there?
2. What has been your best and most inspiring seminar or workshop?

Since my hubby came to move the rest of my stuff today, I'll have pictures of my classroom tomorrow, finally!


  1. 1 We had to attend a seminar given by a neurologist on how the brain works... The technical vocabulary was way over our heads!

    2. Picture Perfect Science... Loved it!

    I love your post title! ;)

    1. Neurologist? Seems like it wouldn't apply!
      Picture Perfect Science? I'm google-ing it right now!
      Kindergarten Schmindergarten

  2. OOOO I feel your pain!

    1. Any of workshop that you sit for a long time with no interaction or movement...I'm such a 5 yr. old!!!

    2. Capturing Kids Hearts- so insightful and impactful!

    Come link up with my "Back to School To-Do List" Linky Party (since you already started your list during your workshop ;))!