Monday, August 22, 2011

Meet the Teacher Monday!

Riley, Kati, Me, Sarah, & Tim at the beach last summer

Hey, y'all!  I’m so excited to be a part of Meet the Teacher Monday!  I can’t wait to share a little bit about myself and learn A LOT about all of you!  

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Tell us a little something about you...

I'm Debra, and I blog at Mrs. McDaniel’s 2nd Grade Superstars. I’m a mom of 3 grown (or almost grown) kids – a 26 year-old daughter who got married in July AND followed in my footsteps by being an elementary schoolteacher, a 23 year-old daughter who is in the fashion design industry in NYC, and a 20 year-old son who is a sophomore at Auburn University majoring in pre-law (with a 3.81 average!!)! School started last Monday and I have been overtired, underfed, and SUPER excited about my new groups of seconds ever since! I live in Alabama in a small rural community about an hour from Birmingham and boy has this first week been hot!!

How long have you been teaching?

This is my seventh year teaching full-time.  I taught at risk students part-time for two years, ELL students part-time for four years, and then started teaching full-time in the Fall of 2004. I taught 3rd grade one year, and I have been teaching 2nd  grade for the last six years..  I *love* second grade. 

You might not know...

I didn’t begin teaching in the classroom until my oldest child was a sophomore in college (my middle child was a senior in high school and my “baby” was in 8th grade)!  Well, actually I started working with the at-risk students when my oldest daughter was a freshman in high school, and I had volunteered in their classrooms ever since they started in elementary school…but I decided to go back to school and get my Master’s Degree when I turned 40! I began to think about what I had accomplished and how much more I had to “give’ even though my own children didn’t especially want me volunteering in their classes any more…so I went back to school! I had to learn all about taking classes in this technologically advanced age…but I am very competitive…and graduated with a 4.0 average! Not bad for an “old” lady!!

What are you looking most forward to this school year?

I'm most looking forward to a fresh start.  I had a very difficult class last year…lots of discipline problems…several RTI students…many ADHD whose parents refused to give them medication…NO sub wanted to be in my classroom!!  I am excited about my new batch of seconds.  After one week, I can already tell this is an entirely different type of class! They are AWESOME!! I cannot wait to get to school each day!

What do you need to improve?

I want to be a better time manager this year. I tend to get “long-winded”, talk (explain) too much, get sidetracked, and have a hard time getting to “Unit” at the end of each day. I am determined to get it all in this year!

I also want to do Guided Math this year.  I did the Debbie Diller book study this summer, worked on organizing my math materials better, worked on Math “Stations”, and really want to do math this way instead of so much whole group instruction.

What teaching supplies can you *not* live without?

Cannot live without my Elmo and LCD projector!! Don’t know how I taught without it! ;) 

Looking forward to my new Mimio…have it set up and am learning how to use it!!

My Keurig coffee maker in our 2nd grade teacher workroom…I cannot make it through the day without 1, 2, 3 (or more) cups of fresh coffee throughout the day!!

I have to agree with Abby -- books, books, and more books!  I spend a fortune on books!

And last, but certainly not least is my wonderful 2nd grade teamies...could NOT make it through a day without them!!
Me (in the middle) with the 4 best team members ever at my daughter's wedding