Welcoming Christmas season: Classroom decoration.

A teacher. One occupation, many job descriptions. A teacher takes care of the teaching and all administration stuff, gives counseling for students who need it, and also, of course, decorates the classroom.

For the last job description, you just don’t need to ask me to do stuff like this, I will do it voluntarily, wholeheartedly, and just excitedly. haha.

This will be my first classroom decoration since this is my first year of teaching. My very first time I have my own classroom 🙂 the feeling is just amazing. My partner and I agreed to have this as our Christmas theme this year: Peace to whom He is pleased. And instead of using some green-red mainstream decoration, I choose blue-silver combination for our Christmas decoration. Let me explain some of the reasons why I chose these two colors as the theme colors in my classroom’s decorations. First of all, I really want my students to be aware of the “why” of doing what we do. Christmas decorations are nice to have for sure, as long as they help us to really understand the real meaning and not drag us into having them as the focus instead. Just like a photo frame, no matter how pretty it is, still, the photo itself is the focus. Having pretty photo frame is nice, but why bother having a nice one without any nice picture with nice memories in it? It’s still pretty, but it’s empty. Blue and silver have meanings as colors. Blue represents peacefulness, tranquility, and calmness. Our theme is “Peace to whom He is pleased.” then blue is just perfectly fit to depict the peace we’re embracing this Christmas.

Here are some of the pictures of the Christmas decorations for my classroom.

wreath2 wreath1simple blue-silver wreaths.

how to make the wreath 1no sophisticated materials needed for these simple yet beautiful wreaths. You just need some used papers, clear tape, and this thingy (what do you guys call this thing huh? haha) well, you can find this in many stores, especially in this season, there will be many of these available at stores. Oh for the bow, you only need origami paper. How to make it? Simple, just go to this link. Very easy.

envelope1 envelope handmade envelopes for Christmas cards for each person in our class. I use gift wrap papers for the envelopes. I’ll post on the how I am going to do with these envelopes soon! oh, plus the cards! They’re still in the making.

I hope to get all done by Friday!

Yeah yeah!

Happy welcoming Christmas everyone! 😀 😀 😀

Another day, another lesson learned. #4

This reflection is inspired by Lecrae’s quote.

“Believe the best about people. Pray for their shortcomings. You ARE NOT the standard. We all need grace.”

This is what I have come to know as a teacher: I have to believe in the best about my students. No bargaining. It’s a must.

It reminds me about an event one month ago, October 18, 2013. The first Parents-Teachers Conference in my life as a real teacher. Well, even though I was not directly involved as in writing the narrative report or meeting the parents to present the report, I learned something from what I saw.

A narrative report is a report written by a homeroom teacher which contains information of the student’s learning and behavior progress as well as his/her strengths and weaknesses during some period of time. A narrative report also includes a commitment taken by the parents and students about the improvements they are going to make in the future. A narrative report is usually reported four times in a year, or once in every quarter. The narrative report has to be written in a positive manner that the teachers should find each student’s strengths and weaknesses. According to most of my fellow teachers who are responsible to write narrative reports, it is very easy to write the reports for good, nice, bright students, because it’s obvious that they have strengths in many aspects. But there are also some other students that are very unique, in a way that it is also obvious that they have strengths, but in doing violations, in having very low achievements, or in showing no motivation in class. Remember, a narrative report has to be written in positive language. I learned that most of fellow teachers were having hard times writing some reports for some students. Every teacher had their own students that they struggled writing the report about.

This is what I learned. We, human, have that tendency to be so hard finding other people’s strengths especially if they have been already labeled as “bad” or “difficult” or “troubled”. And shame on me, I have been doing the same thing to my students too. There are times in class when I am about to have tests, I often have that picture in my head of students that I think are not going to make it. There are times that I call on some students’ names for tests, deep in my heart there is a whisper like “Oh, this student again. He is not gonna make it like the other tests he has failed.” And true as I have thought, he failed for the many times as he has been.

Oh. Such a slap in the face.

Instead of believing the best about my students, I put many kinds of labels on them.

If you love only those who love you, what reward is there for that? Even corrupt tax collectors do that much. If you are kind only to your friends, how are you different from anyone else? Even pagans do that. But you are to be perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect. – Matthew 5:46-48

To put those verses in teacher’s version, it will be like this:

If you love only those bright students, what reward is there for that? If you are only kind to only good, easy-to-handle students, how are you different from other teachers out there who don’t know Me? But you are to be perfect, even as your Teacher in heaven is perfect.

Taking a commitment to follow and obey Him is not a once-taken-commitment. We fall short almost every time. Well, I fall short every time. But that commitment is to be taken daily, as we start a new day, we are given a new opportunity to learn more, to be better, to be more like Him. It takes all the courage to admit that we all fall short and we all need grace. It takes all the awareness that we have limitations to surrender fully to His strength.

Another day, another lesson learned.

Weekend is here, baby!

happy weekend

yeah! weekend is here!

alright, I just wanna take a break from school stuff for a little while. Experiencing the first year of teaching is definitely overwhelming, but I really am enjoying the bitter sweet of it.

well, school is over for this week and I already have dozens of plans to do. wohooo.

Im gonna put on my almost-worn-out yet comfy pair of converse shoes, grab my camera, and call on a becak for a city tour. hahaha.

so, what about you?

hope you guys have a great weekend! yeaaaah!

 

*photo photographed and edited by SUPERRISKA*