a recap of my semester in pictures

So, here I am at the end of my third semester here at the U of R… and it feels both amazing and strange. My lovely mother pointed out to me the other day that I only have 4 more semesters at the university (as one will be spent in a school for my internship in my 4th year)! It is crazy to think that after this next semester is over, I will have completed HALF of my DEGREE! I know I haven’t posted in a while, so I thought I would post some photos in order to show you my semester! Enjoy! 🙂

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This is my floor’s bulletin board in residence, which I made for my RA job at the University. In true teacher fashion, I had to make a cute little theme, and later added a speech bubble for the polar bear saying, “The COOLEST place to be!” Puns for the win.

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This is the masterpiece that I made during my “Jackson Pollock Painting” event in residence. This was SO fun to make, and below is what it looked like AFTER the splattering! What a fun (but messy) project to do with younger kids, too! Image

I also had the privilege of watching my alma mater (and my little sister) win volleyball provincials! It was even more exciting, as my hometown was hosting the event AND it was the women’s team’s first time to ever MEDAL – and they got gold! Definitely a proud moment for a veteran Wildcat. 🙂Image

My mentee and I made these crazy ‘foldovers’ and we both had a blast. He is very into zombies and robots, in case you didn’t notice – haha. I remember doing these in art class in school, so I was happy to try it out on my ‘guinea pig’ and it will definitely be a favourite activity for my future classroom. ImageImageImageImageImageImage

We also have played homemade Battleship on paper, which is a fun and easy game that can help with learning grids and cartesian plane coordinates in Math!Image

In between all of these super fun activities, I actually buckled down and got some serious work done – believe it or not! I wrote two term papers and had a binder full of practicum assignments from my KIN 120 class (pictured below).

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Speaking of my KIN practicum, the amazing little guy my partner and I had the privilege to work with gave us these on our very last day. Needless to say, our hearts were melted. Image

During my frequent Instagram scroll-throughs, I found this and fell in love with it. It’s so strange to see these things said in these contexts, but in relation to mental illness, we hear things like this all the time. It really made me step back and think…

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To get into the holiday spirit, my mentee and I made a gingerbread house for our last session together for 2013! It is so hard to believe that another year is almost over. ImageImageAnd finally, in order to celebrate the end of classes, my friend and I dressed up as presents! 🙂 So to anyone who stuck around long enough in order to get to the bitter end of this post: Happy Holidays, or Merry Christmas, or Happy Hanukkah, or Happy Kwanzaa or Happy Whatever-You-Choose-To-Celebrate-Or-Not-Celebrate! Have a lovely holiday season and cheers to a brand new year full of even more awesome memories to come! Image

Sincerely,

-KKF

blind obstacle courses and paperclip shuffleboard

Hi everyone! It has been a long time since my last post – I’m glad to be back. 🙂

First things first, I have started my In-School Mentoring through Big Brothers of Regina and I am absolutely loving it! My match is an enthusiastic and talkative Grade 5 student named James (I have changed his name for privacy purposes). The mentor training prepares you for a mentee that may be shy and closed off for the first few sessions, but James is very outgoing and 10 seconds after he met me, he decided “Okay, you’re my new mentor, so I am going to tell you everything I can about me in our 60 minutes together!” He completely charmed me with his willingness to share his life, and we had a lot of fun getting to know each other the first meeting. We played a game where one of us came up with a question (ex. What is your favourite season?) and then wrote our answer in our own colour (mine was blue) and also tried to guess the other person’s in their colour (James’ was black). We were both excited when we guessed each other’s favourite animals correctly (see below).

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During our second meeting, we played a few games, and the biggest hit was ‘paperclip shuffleboard’ (an idea I found on this site – check it out!) James was especially excited when he came back from behind and beat me in the last round. In fact, he enjoyed this game so much that he asked if we could play it at our next meeting! Here is a picture of the setup I used (it’s super easy, a ton of fun, and can be played with a variety of materials and on many different surfaces):

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Finally, at our third meeting, we played homemade Battleship and, again, I got whooped! We finished our session with a blind obstacle course, which I was delighted that James ALSO loved and requested that we play next week. This is a great game to build trust in the person directing you, and it also lets the speaker practice giving clear instructions.

Me, blindfolded and ready to be led around the obstacle course James set up!

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Secondly, I have had two practicum sessions for my KIN 120 class (Rec and Persons with Disabilities). My partner, who is also in Elementary Education, and I were ecstatic to find out that we were paired with an awesome little six-year-old boy. He definitely keeps us busy, but we are both loving it! Our first session was in the gym, and we played about 25 different games in 50 minutes – haha. Our second session was in the pool at the university and was also a blast. It is a lot easier to make sure that your student doesn’t outrun you when they are in water :p My partner and I have planned a lesson for our session in the gym tomorrow – if you’d like to check out the rough draft of our activity plan, here is the link.

Thirdly, I have been learning A LOT in my ELNG 200 class. The biggest realization that I have had as a result of this class is that I am very envious of anyone who is bi/tri/multilingual! After I am finished my degree and have settled in to teaching, I would love to work on learning another language! I will put that on my bucket list. I am now also very interested in DLBs (dual language books) and if you want to see one that I have found that can be read in Hindi, Telegu OR English, you can click right here!

Lastly, I have always been fascinated with how much children in school are expected to (and do) know these days. When I was volunteering in elementary classrooms in high school, I realized that students were learning geometry in Grade 1 and 2, whereas I am pretty sure these concepts were not introduced to me until Grade 4! My grandparents have also told me that the math I did in Grade 11 and 12 is equivalent to what was taught in university in their generation. Clearly, the education system is expecting a lot more out of students these days; or are students simply coming to school with more home-based knowledge nowadays? I just find it interesting to think that someday I will be teaching Grade 1 students to multiply – haha. What do you think? Are kids these days at a more academically advanced level than when you were the same age?

That’s all for now! Until next time, go forth and learn something new! 🙂

-KKF

back to school busy-ness

Hi everyone! I am officially back to school, and I have to say, though it took a while to sink in, I am very excited to see what my second year has in store!

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It looks like my prediction about being less busy may have been a bit of a flop… Aside from my 5 classes and being an RA (Resident Assistant) AND (possibly! – I haven’t heard back from the office in a while…) an In-School Mentor for Big Brothers of Regina, I also have three classes with integrated “practicums” or field experience:

ELNG 200 (Linguistic Diversity and Teaching English Language Arts): I will be going into an elementary or high school for an hour/week for 8 weeks and working with an ESL/EAL/ELL (there are SO many abbreviations for the same thing! haha) student.

ECE 200 (Teaching and Learning in Pre-K to 5): I will be observing a 3+ year old child for one hour per week, for 8 weeks. This experience will help to develop my knowledge about ECE students’ behaviour, learning and growth.

KIN 120 (Rec-Persons with Disabilities): I will have 6 one hour sessions to do physical activity and games with a Regina elementary/high school student who has a disability.

So, as you can see, I am going to be a very busy girl! And while this may be a lot to juggle, I am always up for the challenge! I am going to learn SO much this semester and I say, bring it on! 🙂

-KKF