June 15, 2015

Will the Blackhawks Bring Home the Cup?

It's a big night here in Chicago as the whole city gathers around televisions to watch their beloved Blackhawks strive to take home the Stanley Cup yet again.

And here I am blogging and watching the last episode of Orange is the New Black.

It's not that I don't want the Hawks to win. Of course I do. I'm #TeamChicago all the way. But my television access is limited to Netflix streaming through my brother's account, and I'm not into hockey enough to make the trek through this flash flooding to go watch the game elsewhere.

Also? An OITNB binge wins over pretty much everything.

I'm still hoping for a win, though. Because the way Chicago celebrates by decorating the whole city and throwing the best parades is awesome...

... and because Dunkin' Donuts gives us free coffee the day after a win. 

And I like free coffee. 

Go Hawks!

ETA: There are many fireworks going off in our neighborhood right now. Either people are REALLY excited for us for finishing Season 3 of OITNB or the Blackhawks are bringing home the Stanley Cup. Either way, I'm grateful for the free show!

June 12, 2015


Remember that one job I didn't get and how I asked for some interview advice where I had to teach a lesson at an interview elsewhere?


Ya'll! You're looking at the new 8th grade ELA teacher!

I am SOOOO relieved I can't even tell you. What a weight off my shoulders! I haven't had my own full-time classroom in this state since 2009-2010. I DESERVE THIS, damn it!

The only downside to this job is that it's SUPER far away, so we're talking about moving options now. We're not sure if it's best to break our lease early to avoid a 2 hour commute or suck it up until January. Either way, I'm sad to leave this house and location that I love and neighbors that I adore...

... BUT I HAVE A JOB!!!!!

Huge shout out to all those who gave me lesson advice. Specifically, thank you to Lisa who made me re-think my topic and Michelle for helping me pick the perfect poem to use for our guided practice!

Excuse me while I go do my happy dance again!

June 5, 2015

Interview Lesson Advice Needed

So... about that interview. My principal, whom I should remind you is one of my references, called me this morning to let me know they went with anther candidate.

No feedback given. In fact, the conversation lasted about 30 seconds because I was so caught off guard (did I mention that EVERYONE in my building assumed this job was mine?) that all I could say was, "Oh... okay!" And when I replay that "conversation" in my head, I'm almost certain I sounded far too nonchalant or even upbeat about it. The tone in my head certainly didn't reflect the brokenness in my heart or the tears that followed after I hung up the phone and jumped in the shower to sob. 

But I had to pull myself together because I had a phone screening at 12:30 today for a job teaching 8th grade ELA in the north suburbs, which is about an hour away. I know next to nothing about the school district, except that it serves underprivileged children (been there, done that). I honestly don't even recall applying to this particular school district, but they called, so I assume it happened. 

By 1:00, I had a new email in my inbox from the two people who interviewed me inviting me to a panel interview on Wednesday. So, now I'm telling myself that maybe this week's job didn't work out because I'm meant to be someplace else. Maybe there are kids who need me more in another school. Fine. Let's just hurry up and get me situated there!

So... as part of this interview, I have to teach a 10-15 minute lesson to a panel of teachers, and my mind is spinning eleventy billion miles per second. How to narrow it down? 

I was thinking of something focused on writing, since I know (because I asked in my screening) it's one of their big initiatives for next year. 

Mentor sentences?

Interactive Notebook lesson?

Yes, I've done this before. I even have a standard lesson I typically pull out for interviews, but I usually have more time. 10-15 minutes is so short (especially when we're starting from nothing).... 


I know some of you have done this before? What did you teach?

Those who have sat on these panel interviews, what kind of lesson really impressed you?

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