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Your child may have told you...our room is looking bare again! Okay. I cheated a little with this picture - it was taken at the beginning of the year before I decorated. But...you get the idea. 

I wanted to take time to tell you how much I have totally and completed LOVED teaching these kids this year. Really, they have been up with the top of my favorite classes. They are hard working, friendly, funny, and thoughtful students with excellent manners. I've been impressed with them the entire year. It makes leaving teaching a little hard to leave such a great group. 

Thank you, parents, for your support this year. Thank you for raising awesome kids and always being there to help for volunteer events and classroom needs. 

Feel free to keep in touch with me. I love to hear from my students even when I no longer have them in my classroom. 

Thank you for a great year. Next year you can find me at Victory Christian School in Carmichael.

Mrs. Jimison

I'm Still Here!

I'm sorry if you've felt like I've drifted off the planet. I assure you - I am still here! (smile) I've been on quite a journey these past 4 weeks with a torn retina - in two different places, retinal hemorrhage,  and vitreous detachment. The last time I thought I'd be back at work, he found another tear and I started from day 1 again. This is the first time in my 30+ years of teaching that I have been off work more than 5 days - let alone missing Open House (Core Knowledge Night). I'm generally an active person and I've been laying for 10 days on my side and sitting for 4 week now. No running. No cycling. Barely any walking. I did go to church this week - that was a treat!

The sad part - I don't know how my appointment will go Friday! I am hoping for good news but am skeptical as well since my eye is not as clear as it was  a couple of days ago which is a bit worrisome. And while I've not been active, I find that my eyes are very fatigued. You know how as a kid your mom would tell you not to cross your eyes...but you did anyway to try it...and it kind of hurt? That's how my eyes feel most of the time. I think all the straining of trying to focus gets them worn out!

So - time will tell!

In the mean time, I've been able to watch student reports on SeeSaw and I collected items to grade from Ms Dowd who drove all the way up to El Dorado Hills to deliver them to me!! She deserves a pat on the back - and maybe some chocolate and coffee for that!

One of my strengths in "StrengthsFinder" is learning. I love learning! So I've been taking tons of online courses in SkillShare. Yes - fun stuff. I've been working on watercoloring, lettering, and turning watercolor art into digital pictures. All the chalkboard pictures were done on my iPad with an iPad Pencil! I love it!!

We've been busy as teachers sharing documents to plan for an end-of-year party on the last day so don't worry - we're on it!

And...I have busy times ahead of me. I am sorry to let you know I will not be returning to Rocklin Academy next year. I've accepted a position as principal of Victory Christian Elementary School in Carmichael. I know a lot about Victory from my time working in private Christian schools and am really excited about the opportunity. I've valued my time at Rocklin and love love love my students here. Working back in the private school system is something I am looking forward to doing once again. Thank you for the opportunity to serve your wonderful, amazing 6th graders! They have blessed me immensely!

One Eyed

It was actually intriguing...

I was driving home Saturday from CostCo talking to my son who was visiting. I was telling him about a recent ophthalmologist visit when I started noticing black dots all over the sky. I was intrigued. I told him - "Wow!! Look at all those black dots! There must be hundreds of them!" By the time I got home, the hundreds had turned into thousands.

Then, sitting at the kitchen table, a "swoosh" took over my eye and the thousands of dots were covered like a veil of grey mixed with cobwebs. If I tried to look hard, I could see that the dots were now millions of pieces, floating, mixing, swooshing around. It was weird. As scary as it was, I did think it was intriguing.

By this time I had lost 90% of my vision in my right eye. It wasn't painful...just really weird.  I waited until Sunday to go to emergency. (PS don't wait) After a full day, I ended up at another ophthalmologist office and found out I had Posterior Vitreous Detachment with Vitreous Hemorrhage. Sounds icky, but I understand it can be common. People get this for many reasons - mine seems to be severe myopia which I inherited from my dad who also had PVD and retina detachment with multiple surgeries ... and Macular Degeneration.

This week I am home from work sitting up and taking it easy while the vitreous falls back into place. I have about 40-50% of my vision now which is good and I am thankful for my left eye which sees great! (Although I am told will probably have the same thing happen to it.)

I am enjoying my time at home writing in my new happiness journal my daughter gave me for my birthday  #52HappyLists. I'm listening to worship music and enjoying practicing my watercoloring.

Even one-eyed at the moment, I have so much to be grateful for and am beyond blessed. 

The New Homework System

Have you heard about the new homework system?

When I was young, I went home and quietly did my homework in our family room. I guess I was naive to think that students still did this. Perhaps some do. Yet, many don’t…at least those I have spoken with recently.
My students informed me this week that they often do their homework using Houseparty - a group video chat app. I can see the benefits and dangers of this. Students receive a notification as soon as a friend is on. They can have up to 8 on at a time as a private or group chat. "Where this opens up an entire new circle of communication and online safety is that if one person in the chat happens to be connected to a user and the others are not friends, those connections are still able to join the conversation because of the mutual connection. Which means that kids who do not know each other have the opportunity to be chatting with people they do not know. Also of concern, is the ability to take a screenshot of the people you are chatting with, without them knowing about it "(SociallySafe, 2016 quoted from this site).

The benefits may be collaboration. It's great that kids can help each other and collaborate easily on projects.

The problem may also be cheating. Last year, simply texting was a problem.  I found that students would take screenshots of their finished work and text it to friends so that they would all have the answers. Now, students can just video chat and share the work. There is no evidence of a photo left on the phone.

My concerns are many - so many I can't write it all down in a blog post. Parents may want to consider a parental control app. Check out this post to read about ways to track what kids are doing. Teachers need to be aware. The ease of cheating using a smartphone adds a whole new dimension to the problem. (Birdsong, 2017) This site may give you a few ideas to put in place.

Along with collaboration, students just finished their stick puppet shows! They chose a MesoAmerican Folklore story to illustrate with a puppet show. We mixed a little of old fashioned with a little of technology! Students chose a story, wrote a script, drew the backdrops and figures, then recorded the shows. I must say, they were darling. 

Help Me Survive This...

That's what I was telling myself just yesterday. You see, back in October I signed on with a running/training group to train for the South Folsom Trail Run - 21 miles and almost 2,000 feet of climbing. I trained hard and was getting in great running shape. Then - I went to India. Not only did I not run in India, I sat a LOT. When I came back, I was very ill for almost 2 weeks and also did not run. Just last week I ran a total of about 12 miles...6 being my longest with two 3 mile days. Help. 

Then - my daughter let me know she and her husband were driving from Santa Barbara to cheer me on. Yikes! I told her I wasn't ready and couldn't run it. She said, "That's okay - we already made plans and are coming anyway." Even the night before I said I wouldn't go because it was supposed to be 35 degrees and rain. I woke up Saturday and -although it was cold- it wasn't raining and I decided to attempt the 13.5 mile run instead. In the meantime, Seth decided he would run a race downtown since I said I wasn't going to run and they went off to Sacramento.

At the half marathon turn around, I decided - "How bad can 8 more miles be?" I was feeling good so I decided to go for the 21. What was I thinking? It was pain.fullllll. At mile 15 my legs were both cramping, my back hurt, and I was exhausted. I decided I would bail. Then...my daughter texted, "How are you doing?" Augh. I called her back and let her know I was going to drop. She proceeded to talk me out of quitting ... urging me on and telling me I COULD do it. (I continued to argue that I couldn't.) As most of you know, she is a marathoner and she runs into the "wall" often. She told me to focus on each mile at a time...or the next hill at a time...or next few steps at a time...but to keep going. She then called back every 15 minutes to keep encouraging me. Yep - I finished with my last 2 miles running in hail! This reminds me of how much encouragement helps! 

This quote is up on our board right now. Seems fitting, doesn't it?

Do you know about the AMAZING event that is happening soon? The World Championship Twirling in Norway and GUESS WHAT? Our very own Olivia will be representing the United States! Yes, we are thrilled for her. Here is a great promo video to watch.  We are excited for you, Olivia!

This week students will be working on their Persuasive Speech! 
We will spend this week looking at a review of giving a speech including tone and posture as well as how to write a speech.  Students will not need to have a formal speech written, but they will need note cards. It should be fun!!

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