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Its the Professional Thing to Do

Every professional should critique him or herself on a regular basis. A nice honest critique and then make changes accordingly. While doing so you wonder:

  • Did I give it my best?
  • What were my strengths? Weaknesses?
  • What does the research say?
  • What did the children leave with?
  • How did they respond to me and the classroom?
  • Also how did they begin to respond to each other?
  • Am I only looking at research that supports what I believe?
  • What changes should I make?
  • Are my expectations realistic?
  • Am I delusional? lol
  • Have I bitten off more than I can chew?
  • ...and a lot of others I cant think of right now
Im currently looking at a program that is a bit different from what I did the second year. Reading it makes me understand more why I chose to teach the way I did ( a mixture of whole language and cooperative learning).At the same time, I don't want to do the easy thing and shun something because its "not what I like" or not what Im used to. I just started looking and the jury is still out. 

Initial thoughts?

Im sure each has its place. In a perfect world, Id have time for all I wanted to do and all the children needed but in a half day, that just isnt going to happen. I felt like my focus last year of reading for understand, even if it was mostly from pictures and reading from memory, not only helped in English but would help when reading Arabic because they were thinking rather than focusing on sounding out words. Being alone in the room doesnt allow me to do both...and this probably wouldnt be an issue if I had someone else doing a small group. 

I guess I kind of felt like I was working on building a foundation that could handle a building like the Burj; focus on vocabulary, comprehension, phonemic awareness,oral language skills, and sharing what theyve read  through whatever means they could express it all while supporting their growing love for books. If they went into the next grade with letter/sound knowledge and the ability (or exposure) to making simple words from word families, and to recognize what letters (sounds) go into making certain words, then I felt like the next teacher could most certainly build the first floor and have them reading words and their comprehension would be on par or not far behind.

I have lots more reading to do and will see how my mind wraps itself around all this information.
Until then.


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Being here for so long makes me feel like I should be speaking more Arabic. Some people here will ask you why you don't know more.I even had a rude guy tell me how he speaks English and that I should be speaking Arabic. Im sure it didn't cross his mind that he has many opportunities to practice using English because that is what is used everywhere. In regards to Arabic, not only is it not often used in public places but there are different dialects so words I learn at school may have no meaning if you are not Emirati.  Anyway, I started my list with about 70 and have and will add to it as words cross my mind.Im sure when school starts again Ill remember some more!
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Brace yourself.

It's coming.

Piles of things with nowhere to go and an impending deadline. You have a million things to do so you begin the arduous task of figuring out what to keep and what to let go of. In the beginning, it seems easy enough. Maybe you don't have lots of things. In which case, the above picture will never be you. In most cases, however, just get your tissue ready. Or your bottle of libation. Whichever suits your fancy.

Let me start with the process of letting things go. Because I am so smart, I began paring down months ago. It felt good and I was so proud of myself for being on top of things. After that, I began to walk around my house and think about what I would post things for when the time came. I decided I didn't want the hassle of bargaining so I would post things for a ridiculous price. Satisfied that I had time, I continued on with daily life. Fast forward some months and we get the paper work. It is so confusing that I set it aside and figured …

Moroccanoil Soap

If youve read this blog for any length of time, Im sure youve gotten your laughs off my Moroccan bath experience. As crazy as that was for me, i believe I will be going to get one again, though at a much better establishment!
Today, I ran across this product

 And while waiting in line for a price, an Arabic lady gave it the once over, looked inside, and nodded her head in approval of what was inside. After seeing it was only 9.50 dhm, I got another. Once I try it, I will certainly give a review! In the meantime, here is information about the product-or products like this:

Moroccan Black Soap and How To Use It

The black soap is part of the traditional hammam ritual. It is the first treatment in oriental public bath. With a texture of butter, this natural vegetable paste based with black olives is rich in vitamin E.
It is obtained from a mixture of oil and crushed olives, soaked in salt and potash. In the nineteenth century it was used as a product of Dermatology and later became a real b…