March Books

March turned out to be a fantastic month of reading for me! #MainlandTrip. I re-read Lois Lowry’s The Giver for my Literacy Methods class literature study unit. I also finally read Eve and the Choice Made in Eden by Beverly Campbell, Choice Words by Peter H. Johnston, and The Leader in Me by Stephen R. Covey. Loved them all. Here’s a short teaser for each one:

You’ve probably already read this classic Young Adult novel, but if you haven’t, I urge you to do so asap. You will join 12 year-old Jonas in his world of complete peace, health, security, job satisfaction, obedience, and sameness. Agency is not part of his society, and the price they pay unfolds throughout the story. I first read it when I was about 10 years old, and I can tell you it was an entirely different experience reading it 13 years later. #release #stirrings

As I’ve told you, this book was recommended to me by my mission president’s wife, the amazing Sister Weidman. If you’ve ever had a question about Eve, or the Fall, or the role of women in God’s plan, or women and the Priesthood, or symbolism the Garden story, or anything along those lines, this book is for you. Beverly Campbell wrote the section on Eve in the Bible Dictionary, so we know she’s legit. This book is based on scripture and prophetic quotations, rather than casual speculation. I’m recommending it to everyone.

#sickcover. One of my professors let me borrow this book after I asked him a question about dialogue in the classroom. If you can’t tell, the subtitle of the book is “How our language affects children’s learning.” Johnston talks about how the way we word questions makes all the difference in the world. #SundaySchool #youknowwhatI’mtalkingabout. If you’re interested in learning about how the way you say things makes a difference, read this book.

So awesome. We read this for Classroom Management, and I totally want to do it. I wrote about going to a Leader in Me school a few weeks ago, and this book talks about how it all came to be.

The Chamber of Secrets Looms Nearer

I’m going to be a teacher when I grow up. It’s kind of shocking how close I am to that nose dive! But the closer I get, (not too close. Still got a mission, don’t forget) and the more I read and learn, the more nervous and uncomfortable and appalled and surprised and perplexed I become, particularly pertaining to the effects of No Child Left Behind, on both students and teachers. (See above picture.)

I read this piece written a teacher in Kansas as he discussed No Child Left Behind, and I thought it was quite interesting:

“What other profession is legally held to PERFECTION by 2014? Are police required to eliminate all crime? Are firefighters required to eliminate all fires? Are doctors required to cure all patients? Are lawyers required to win all cases? Are coaches required to win all games? Of course they aren’t.

“For no other profession do so many outsiders refuse to accept the realities of an imperfect world. Crime happens. Fire happens. Illness happens. As for lawyers and coaches, where there’s a winner there must also be a loser. People accept all these realities, until they apply to public education.

“If a poverty-stricken, drug-addled meth-cooker burns down his house, suffers third degree burns, and then goes to jail; we don’t blame the police, fire department, doctors, and defense attorneys for his predicament. But if that kid doesn’t graduate high school, it’s clearly the teacher’s fault.”

There you go. Thanks to that lovely little act in 2002, children are getting left behind, and teachers are getting thrust into a pit of despair, with no hope of escape.

New Life Plan

Well, it’s been quite a while since I’ve had a post of any substance whatsoever. This was initially a courtesy to Lucy, who came out of the closet over the summer about her tendencies to not read my blog due to the high levels of difficulty presented by words on a computer screen. But I’m afraid that’s over, at least for a little while. Sorry Lug.

I was going to post on Thanksgiving, because I have made the most wonderful slideshow of things I’m grateful for, but I can’t figure out how to export it onto my blog. Still in progress, because I think it will be a pretty big hit.

Today’s topic is my new life plan, and this is it:

1. Mission January 2013-July 2014
2. Graduate with BFA and Elementary teaching certificate (I’m feeling pretty good about being a music major) December 2014
3. [Insert marriage where applicable. Time subject to change.]
4. Teach elementary school in Provo, preferably 4th or 5th grade.
5. [Insert family where applicable. Include at least 5 children.]
6. Get into Sped Masters program at BYU; take night classes while teaching during the day.
7. Conduct research concerning the effects of music on children with special needs, specifically and especially neurotrauma.
8. Take my findings to a third-world country to help and teach children with those same problems, who are without the incredible technology and assets we have here in the United States. [Hopefully bring my family with me. Do other work to help these people.]
9. Write a book about my research and experiences. Maybe several books.
10. Continue to do work for Exceptional children and their families; hopefully assist in better communication from the children, possibly due to musical expression as replacement for potential lack of verbal expression. [I know what it feels like to not be able to communicate or make people understand what I’m trying to say, because that’s how it is when I first come out of a seizure. It is extremely frustrating, and if someone were to be in a state of comprehension, without the ability to convey it, an alternate form of expression would be literally life-changing.]
11. Serve at least 3 missions with my husband.
12. Have lots of grandkids. [Yes, I know I have lots of control over that.]
13.Continue to travel and help children and others for the rest of my life.

So that’s the plan. I’m open to changes, but this is the rough outline of what I hope will happen.