Thursday, January 31, 2013

Short Update

I thought I would post a quick update about how the first weeks of school have gone, and to ask you to pray with me on a few things.

I now have my tickets for my trip home--praise the Lord! While I'm enjoying some things about this term, I'm getting very excited about seeing my family and friends. God has been working things out bit by bit, and I'm just so thankful for His help. I was able to get a lot of the planning for next term done while I was planning for this term, and I'll keep adding to my Term 2 file as I go. There still is not someone coming out who would be able to replace me, so we are continuing to pray for whatever provision the Lord deems best.

One detail of my furlough that I've started to pray about is transport. I'm looking into renting a vehicle from a ministry that provides wheels for missionaries for a part or all of my time at home, and would appreciate prayers as I make decisions. Having a car would enable me to better help out at home, have some freedom, and perhaps take some road trips to visit family and friends.

My students are settling in well, and while there are many frustrations in training up a new 6th grade class, I have already seen some progress in many of them. The biggest issue is that these kids are not used to doing homework, so it is a pretty big adjustment for them. Some of them also have a hard time working during class time, so they are already falling behind. I'm trying to give extra help where I can, and other staff are joining me in supporting these kids, but they still need prayer. I've been very encouraged by my 7th grade class--they have really stepped up to the plate and shown some new maturity this term. It gives me hope that I can get these other kids whipped into shape!

The first weekend of school, one of our fourth grade girls trusted the Lord--what a way to start the term off! Sometimes it seems like there are such dry spells where we pour ministry into seemingly deaf ears, but I'm learning to really hold onto the promise that God's word does not return to Him void. Who knows what words will take hold of a child's heart, or what action sets their hears on the road to repentance? Perhaps others will turn to the Savior this term, or it may be another term of sowing. Either way, praise the Lord for those who have responded to Him in this last year!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Out of the mouths of children...

I gave my kids a pop history quiz today, and one of the questions was to describe the religion of Rome. Here are some of my favorite answers:

“The Roman religion was very stressing.”

“The Roman reliogn was a fierious and killing reliogn.” (sic)

“Roman religion was really weird because they worshiped gods.”

I’m having a lot of fun doing side research on Roman history—it brings back happy memories of Latin class! I’m realizing how much you need the context of Rome to understand the New Testament, and marveling again at God’s hand in history. How can you be a historian and not believe in the sinfulness of man, and in a God who’s plan spans the centuries?

Saturday, January 19, 2013

After the first week and a half

This is my first weekend off, so I thought I would take the time to show some pictures of my classroom while it still looks fairly nice and fresh. I kind of enjoy putting up the new years backer paper and boarder and re-evaluating which posters I want up in my room. I try to make things different enough to be interesting, but normally don’t go for radical change. So here is quite look into the room where I spend most of my time during the term:

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Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Another little peek into my life is this picture of what happens when a bottle of Bodacious barbeque sauce breaks inside one of your Christmas packages, and takes awhile to reach you…

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And just for fun to close off, here is a picture of Hazel enjoying a lazy afternoon.

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Friday, January 11, 2013

The Children are back!

Today is full school day number two of Term 1, 2013, and so far things are going fairly well. This term is always a challenge because of the kids who are getting a bit of a wake-up call with our rules and procedures, but we're all getting better at explaining things in the best order. My new 6th grades haven't run screaming for the hills yet, so I count that a win, and I'm getting better at remembering that no, these kids have not been with me for two years, so they need a bit more direction when it comes to assignments and formatting.

I can't believe this is my fourth year of teaching! Some things are getting so much easier, and some things about my teaching bug me more now that I can stop worrying so much about getting it all right. I know you never really ever learn all there is to learn about teaching (which is good--otherwise I would be so very bored), and I hope to see myself continue to improve this year.

My dog continues to be a fearsome doorstop stealer--she is constantly running off with the wedges from the admin, and this time I haven't found them again. Sometimes I'm not sure which is worse--pets or children! Hazel also will pick up items the kids leave lying around and bring it to my yard. Nothing like returning dog slimed hankies!

The rain yesterday smelled so good that I had to do some shameless sniffing as I patrolled the halls during prep. Despite all the mud and wet feet, I really enjoy rainy season!