Changes and Fire!

Yesterday I was finally able to get into my classroom for the first time all summer! I loaded up my van with a bunch of boxes and all of the Monday Made-It stuff I have been having so much fun creating this summer, and headed to school. My plan was to take a few pictures, paint a dividing wall that I have and arrange the furniture. I figured that would be a good start!
Once I got to school I realized that I had left my camera at home - after carefully ensuring that I had fresh batteries and that the memory card was in it instead of in my computer. I even tucked it into its little carrying case before I left in on desk at home! I should have realized at that moment that things were not going to go my way.
I decided to stop in the principal's office just to say hi and let her know I was in the building. I asked her what she was up to and she said "Looking for you. Come sit down and let's talk." My heart immediately started pounding and my mind started racing, trying to think of anything I could have done to get in trouble. Since I hadn't been to school since May I was coming up blank. Then I realized that she was moving things around and making small talk, not really getting to the point. Suddenly it hit me. "Just tell me you're not moving me out of kindergarten." I said. Well the look on her face said it all. Apparently my kindergarten spot is going to another teacher who had trouble in intermediate. They figure kindergarten is more her speed, which means she gets my old room and I get bumped.
Which means I get one of the new rooms. But wait, if there aren't enough 1st graders I may have to move to 2nd grade. In which case I'd have to move rooms again. So now I get to play a waiting game - if there are enough kindergarteners for 3 classes I'll teach kindergarten. If not, but there are enough 1st graders for 2 classes I'll teach 1st grade. If neither grade has an opening then I get moved to 2nd. Confusing, right? I won't know for sure until the day before school starts since even though enrollment is this week, a lot of our kiddos enroll late so final decisions won't be made until the 16th.
 So as it stands now, I'm teaching one of 3 grades, in one of two classrooms. As I was trying to absorb all this and figure out if I really want to spend my time/energy setting up a room I may have to move out of in a week, I got a phone call. It was my oldest son, calling to tell me that the neighbor's house was on fire. Since we live in a duplex, that basically means our house was on fire! You have never known terror until you get a phone call saying your house is on fire and your kids are home alone while you're halfway across town.

Luckily he had the sense to get everyone outside and he was actually calling me from the driveway. The fire department was already there, so he didn't have to call 911 or anything. My husband's office is 5 minutes away so I quickly called him and he raced home to see what was going on. By the time I got home 15 minutes later everything was pretty much over. Turns out the neighbors' back porch caught on fire (they smoke out there), and it started to climb up the outside wall. Not sure how much damage there is inside their part, but I know they went to a hotel for a few days while repairs are made. Our house was pretty smoky, but the firefighters brought a huge fan over to push the smoke out and it's fine now.

Of course, since we moved here because our old house caught on fire and was pretty much destroyed, this was very traumatic for all of us. Add that to the grade level change and it was probably one of my worst days in a long time. I self-soothed with a big plate of spaghetti for dinner (carb heaven!) and a bowl of chocolate ice cream. Then I sat down to plan.

First things first. Do I change my blog name? I won't know for sure until the 16th, bu if I do change grade levels I will more than likely change my blog name too. Which means that I need catchy blog titles because Herding Kats in 1st Grade (or 2nd!) just doesn't have the same ring to it. I love my blog design though, so I want to stay with the cowgirl/rancher theme. If you happen to be one of those witty people who can come up with cute blog names and you think of one for me, please let me know! I am drawing a complete blank so I'll need some help on this one!

Next up. Do I set up my room or wait to know for sure in case I get moved to 2nd grade? Well, possession is 9/10 of the law right?
 So I'm going to go ahead and decorate the heck out of the new room! Maybe if I'm all settled in I won't get moved no matter which grade I teach! Besides, I'm 99% sure that they'll have enough firsties for me to get a spot, unless some tragedy happened and 20 of our kinders from last year fell off the face of the earth. Pretty sure I would have heard about that though. So, chances are I'll be in the fancy new room, teaching 1st grade. Therefore I will go ahead with setting up the class, but leave room to make it into a kindergarten class just in case.

Finally, curriculum. I have been creating kindergarten stuff all summer! I'm going to start looking over 1st grade CCSS and hopefully I can adapt most of my stuff, but I also need recommendations. If you know of any great resources for 1st grade CCSS please Rustle Up a Response below and let me know!

Alright, now that I have a plan of attack, I'm going to try to think positively and just go with the flow. I've done 1st before, I can do it even better this time around I'm sure. 2nd grade would be a challenge, but I'd get to loop with my kiddos from this year and that would be great. Kindergarten would be the bestest bestest of course, so please cross your fingers that all those little kinders come out of the woodwork before school starts and not after like last year when we had only 32 on the first day of school and 55+ within 2 weeks!
 I'm off to enroll my oldest in 8th grade (wow time flies!), then we'll start work on the new room. Hopefully there will be no more fires, or floods or any other type of catastrophes! And definitely no more getting called into the principal's office! Have a great day - I'll try to share pictures tomorrow - if i remember my camera lol!

20 Rustle Up A Response!:

Sandy said... Reply to comment

What a day!!! I love your positive attitude! :) Hang in there and keep us updated! :)

Mrs. Parker said... Reply to comment

Wow! I loved the emotioncons to help share your day. Good luck.

Blog titles:
School on the Range
Country Girl
Gathering Learners

FirstGradeBlueSkies (Jennifer) said... Reply to comment

Hope you get to stay in your room!! (and that your home is ok =)
First Grade Blue SKies

Jody said... Reply to comment

Wow! Good luck with everything. I'm so glad your house was okay. I've gotten that fire call before. So scary!
Camp Kindergarten

Mrs. Hoang said... Reply to comment

You are a trooper! I remember asking for pre-K, told ok. Then I take the three day Splash Frog street conference, set up my room work on curriculum then a week before kids come, find out I'm back in Kinder. I didn't take it so well!
Good luck!

Megan @ I Teach. What's Your Super Power? said... Reply to comment

Oh my gosh! Too much drama in one day. I'm glad your house is okay. Good luck with the K/1st/2nd grade job. Breathe in breathe out!

I Teach. What's Your Super Power?

Mrs. Ryan said... Reply to comment

I'm pretty sure that your day would have put me over the edge! You seem to be handling it so well! Good luck with everything -- I'm glad your house is okay!

Amy said... Reply to comment

Oh my goodness! That day sounds beyond stressful! I like how you coped (carbs + sugar = happy)! Hang in there!

VickyVinas said... Reply to comment

Your poor, crazed self! I feel your pain! Last year I was in between K and first after teaching first for two years. They moved me to K, eventhough there was an opening in first and then wanted to take it back after I had already changed rooms. I said no way! I had already spent a day and a half of my time cleaning out the new room I was given and was not switching back to my old room. it was nuts! I hope they let you keep the room you are moving into. And in case you get switched to a different grade:
Possible Blog Titles
- Rounding up the Firsties
- Cowpokes in Second Grade

- Vicky

Mrs. Lundquist said... Reply to comment

Sorry about your news. :)

Roping Restless Rascals :)

Mrs. Lundquist said... Reply to comment

Teaching Cowgirls and Indians :)

Lisa said... Reply to comment

Wow, what a day! So sorry all that happened in one big yuck of a day! Your positive attitude is great and I'm with you....I'd decorate the heck out of that shiny new room!!!

Super Pig and Tyrant King

Ash said... Reply to comment

Oh wow that seems like a truly horrible day! Hopefully things turn around and work out for the best.

I'd go set up your classroom just because even if you do have to move, you will have a general idea of how you want things to be arranged. But I think setting up would make it harder for them to move you since that would be so much extra work.

As far as the blog title goes, I would definitely say change it. But since you could change grades a lot of times I would go more generic. Maybe something like Wild West Teaching, Wrangling Elementary Schoolers, Cowgirl Kiddo Wrangler, Teach it Cowgirl, or Teaching in a Saddle. Sorry I am not that creative especially when I am not familiar with the Cowgirl thing.

Fingers crossed you get to stay in kindergarten!

Mrs. Shelton said... Reply to comment

Whew! I am exhausted and stressed out after just reading that! :) I love the emotioncons though!! Best of luck to you!

Kindergarten Korner

Suzanne Sweeney said... Reply to comment

You are so positive I am sure things will go your way - wherever you are you will have some very lucky students! Take good care of yourself!

Tamara Williams said... Reply to comment

OH MY Gracious Goodness (newest term from my ten year old. HA Ha HA)!
That is quite some day. You have a great attitude about everything. I will pray that you get kindergarten. Good luck with everything to come.

Ms. Kerri said... Reply to comment

You have such a great attitude! I am so glad that your family and house were ok. I don't really understand why people get moved to the younger grades when things don't go well. Kindergarten and first are so important for the rest of the school careers. I'm terrible at coming up withe creative names. I changed my blog name from Krazy Kindergarten to Krazy Klass but I didn't come up with it. Good luck with everything!
Ms. Kerri and her Krazy Kindergarten

Mrs Poultney said... Reply to comment

I think most of us have been there when you are changed around either just after you start or just before you start. It can make you feel like you are running on a hamster wheel- working like crazy but not really getting anywhere. Very happy to hear your family was safe, that is a scary call to get! I guess you have to roll with the changes you can't change and embrace the experiences. You could turn it into a teaching experience about moving houses and being in a new place. Best of luck with it Jennifer (:
Mrs Poultney's Ponderings

Diane O said... Reply to comment

Hope that is the most drama you will have in one day all school year long! Praying that there is an abundance of kindergartners for you! I love your blog title. Can you just stay "Herding Kats"?

Mrs. Katzman's Kinder Cubs said... Reply to comment

OM Gosh! You have such a great attitude. I just looked at the pictures you posted of your new room. I hope all goes well and you are able to know what you are doing soon. Best wishes and warmest regards!

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