Thursday, October 28, 2010

Fall Fun!

I have lived in community for so long now, that I think at times I take it for granted. I went straight from the Cornerstone community to the B2B community, so this type of living has always felt so normal to me. At any time in the day I can walk outside my door and there is someone to talk to. At times throughout the week we gather for worship, small groups, community dinners, exercising or games. Sometimes it is easy for me to feel overwhelmed by all the events on the calendar, but at the end of the day I truly love community living. One of my favorite B2B community traditions is the annual SMCA Fall Festival that we had last night!

The evening always consists of Fall treats, cider, hay rides, games and bonfire, the kids trick-or-treating around the campus, and of course, costumes! Since the Fall Festival is really for the kids, the other single ladies and I tried to think of a costume that all the kids would appreciate, and one idea rose about all the others... High School Musical!

Yes, we say it is for the kids, but we love dressing up just as much as they do! Here are all the single ladies in our HMS costumes... can you guess who is who?

Sweet girls! Claudia is a fairy, Sofia L. is a ballerina and Sofia P. is an Indian.

And Here is Mark, Luke and Josh... boys will be boys!

Part of the staff dressed up and ready for fun!

One last shot of the High School Musical crew!

It was a great night! And I am happy to report that today at school my students were relatively calm considering all of the sugar that we filled them up with!

I hope that you are enjoying Fall as much as we are! I do miss the beautiful colors of Michigan and my family's annual Fall Color Tour up the coast, but I am thankful to be where God has me right now.

Thanks again for your prayers and support!



Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A Trip Down the Lazy River

When I came back to Mexico to begin my second year of teaching, I soon realized that something had changed....

Monterrey feels like home.

When I drive through the city I know where I am going, I know what I am going to see and what to expect. I have grown more comfortable with the language. I have developed deeper relationship with the other women on staff. There have been a few moments when I see the mountains in the morning or walk behind my apartment to do my laundry and I am struck with the thought of, "Wow, this is really where I live." I praise God for this because it is a wonderful feeling, I feel so blessed to be living here in this season of my life.

Also, the more I explore this city and learn about the vibrant Mexican culture, the more I love it! One great excuse for exploring new parts of the city is by sneaking it into a field trip... oh, how I do love my job! For our October field trip we went downtown to the river walk and took a boat tour through the city. We then had lunch in the park and ended the day with a visit to the Steel Museum.

On the riverboat we had a gorgeous view of Saddleback Mountain!

The River Walk is one of my favorite parts of the city. These quaint little buildings are all restaurants and in the evenings you can sit outside and have dinner.

Here are some shots of the kids on the boat. Sorry I didn't take too many, I was too busy enjoying the sunshine! :)

Now that we are done soaking up the sun, we are going to soak up some history! Yippee, off to the Steel Museum!

Riding up the shaft that used to carry the steel to pour into the giant oven.

SMCA kids at the lookout... what a great view of the park!

Ruby and I at the top of the museum.

SMCA in front Horno 3, the Steel Museum

There is a little glimpse into the first field trip of the year. What could be more fun than getting to have school outside while learning about the fascinating city that we live in? Ok, I'm sure my students could think of plenty of things that are more fun! :) But overall it was a great day and I'm excited to see what we can come up with for a November excursion.

Thanks for checking in! Until next time, I pray that you are resting in the peace and provision of the Lord this week!



Monday, October 25, 2010

Catching Up...

I find that with blogging, the more time that passes between entries, the harder it is to begin again. Life is flying by here in Mexico and I know there must be many things to share. For weeks I have been trying to motivate myself to post something, anything, but I was at a loss of words for where to begin. So, since it has been ridiculously long since I have written anything, I am going to let some pictures walk you through the school year in SMCA so far.

When I arrived back to Mexico in August, I was surprised to find a huge hole in one wall of my classroom! I soon learned that a double wide doorway was being added to connect my room with the middle room so that I could have a clear view of the middle school students that I would be facilitating through an online learning program. SMCA sure is growing and it was becoming a bit too much for two teachers to handle, so we have 5 students (in grades 7,8, and 11) that take online classes, with me as their online teacher. This is a huge load off of me
because I don't have to do any lesson planning or direct instruction, I am just available to
answer questions, grade and make sure that they are staying on top of their work.

Here are some pictures of my classroom that I took in the beginning of the year:
If you remember my classroom from last year, then you may notice some big changes! For instance, the white boards used to be on the opposite wall.

The hole and the back of my classroom! You can see my perfect view into the library.

Part of the library.

My latest Cricut creations- literary genre posters!

My desk... looking pretty neat, considering what it looks like on some days!

Writer's Workshop station

And here are a few quick highlights of the year so far:

My kiddos (minus Colton) all dressed up in red, white and green for Mexican Independence Day!

We have been having fun in Social Studies! This year we are studying medieval times. Here are my students with the class signon that they made to represent our class.

In Science we are doing anatomy. Our first unit was on the cell, so to review the parts of a cell, we created our own edible cell out of a jello mold! It was a ton of fun, and my students loved it- especially since they got to eat the left over nuclei, ribosomes, and lysosomes (aka jaw breakers, Nerds, and M&Ms)!

All of the parts of the cell are in place, now it is time to flip it over and see how it turned out!

Whoops! It seems as though our jello started to melt! I guess this is what happens to cells when there isn't a cell membrane! Well, the kids still had fun and I am happy to report that they all did excellent on their cell test later that week!

Thanks for checking in and I promise to try and be more diligent in my blog updates. Many exciting things are happening in the school, the ministry and the city, and I look forward to sharing all of those things with you as I renew my commitment to being a more consistent blogger! :)

Rich blessings my dear friends!