Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Last Day

Today is my last day of maternity leave before I head to school. I flip-flop between being slightly sad to not have the kids around to feeling WOOHOO about not having the kids around and doing my own thing and being nervous about a bunch of stuff...

- Will I be able to cope, especially with my fatigue? It's still a factor, and some days I get so tired it makes me cry. My other deficits come out more when I'm tired too. I'm scared that this will be a problem at school, and especially during practicum where I have to be in a high school by 7:30/8am and be there all day.

- I'm SO scared of the daycare (and kindergarten) sickness train(s). I'm scare of getting sick myself. I'm scared of having to take time away from classes/practicum to care for sick kids (or myself), and DH having to do this too. I'm scare that it's going to go on and on and make the next few months a living hell. I'm just hoping the professors and teachers will be understanding of this.

- I'm worried about how all the logistics will work out - between my schedule changing between when I'm at classes (3 days a week I won't get home until 7pm :( ) and when I'm doing practicum, and what that means for pick-up/drop-offs for the boys, which of course will be at different locations and different times. Having to make lunches, how our routines are going to change.

- Last, and probably the most important, how are the kids going to deal with all the changes? How will our family deal with all the changes?

I know once things get going and we get into our new routines, things will calm down and roll along nicely. I know that I'll enjoy school and think it will be a fun year in that sense, and I know it will be worth it in the end,  but my mind keeps going back to these worries and wondering how the next few weeks and months will go.

What are your own stories (good or bad) of going through a big transition for yourself or your family? How did you cope? Those with kids who have done daycare and then transitioned to school, was there another bout of sickness? Those with more than 1 kids, how was daycare sickness the 2nd (or more) time around? 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

All The Feelings

Sorry that it's been pretty quiet around here. We're getting geared up for all the BIG changes coming up in the next couple of weeks which is bringing up ALL the FEELINGS.

Yes, for the past several months I've been looking forward to starting school and shipping the kids off to daycare and kindergarten. I will FINALLY get time on my own to do my OWN thing! Let those poor early childhood educators deal with them now!

It's still exciting, on all three accounts...but --- quite predictably - I'm feeling sadness too...and I'm a bit scared!

My little big boy is going to BIG school. He doesn't really nap anymore, and does lots of things by himself that he never used too.

My little little boy is getting bigger and is ready for daycare. He's standing on his own two feet - very literally - these days (or at least learning too...but without help from me, really).

WAHHH!!! They don't need me anymore! I'm going to miss them but they won't miss me!! I want them to miss me, but not too much!!

Everything will all be good in a couple of weeks, and we'll all do great. BUT, I'm going to cry like a baby when I drop Evan off at his first day of kindergarten and when I drop Carter off at his first full day of daycare. At least I know I probably won't be the only one!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Adv. Glasses?

There is a professor where DH works who makes their female graduate students wear glasses during conference presentations.

It is unknown whether they make the male students do the same because all of them already wear glasses.

What is your gut reaction to this "policy"? Does your reaction change whether the professor is male or female?


Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Point Pelee

We took our first vacation as a family of four in mid-July! We rented a cottage near Point Pelee (southernmost tip of Canada) and had a blast!

The cottage had it's own private beach so we did a lot of rock hunting/throwing.

We showed the boys how to light a fire and how to make s'mores.

We saw the "supermoon" (I hope that term dies soon).

We played inside and watched movies if it was raining.

We went to Point Pelee park.

We tried our hand at geocaching (something we all really liked!)

We took a ferry over to Pelee Island and went for a family bike ride.

And otherwise just hung out and enjoyed our time together as a family of four!

Monday, August 11, 2014

Course Selection

Well, I have taken another couple steps closer to starting school in September! I paid tuition (OUCH!! Haven't done that in a while) and registered for courses.

Since some have been asking what I'll be doing/learning, I thought I'd share the summaries for the courses I'll be taking (these are not the full descriptions).

Core Courses (everyone takes)

Practicum: The practicum is integral to teacher education, offering teacher candidates opportunities to learn first-hand about schools, classrooms, curriculum, students, and teachers.

Educational Psychology and Special Education: Basic concepts, principles, and theories of learning and human development as they apply to teaching and learning; particular attention to the education of students with exceptionalities.

Social Foundations of Education: A multi-disciplinary course addressing the historical, political, philosophical, social, and legal dimensions of the organization of Ontario education.

Teaching Subjects

Curriculum & Pedagogy in Mathematics (2 courses): An introduction to exemplary practices in the teaching of mathematics

Curriculum & Pedagogy in General Science (2 courses): An introduction to the nature of science and technology education, how students learn science, and contemporary curricula for science and technology.

Co-Curricular Courses (mandatory for teaching subject(s)

Teaching Environmental Science, Grades 9 to 12: An introduction to basic concepts in environmental science and to the integration of environmental science with subject areas in the secondary school curriculum.

Supporting Inquiry Science: The theory and practice of designing inquiry-based learning opportunities for students in grades 7-12 science.


Classroom Management and Assessment (This elective is "strongly recommended", so everyone is pre-registered - so isn't really an elective!): An overview of theories of student behaviour and classroom management, and of assessment and evaluation, with emphasis on classroom applications.

Special Topic: LGB2TQ Issues in Education (all students must choose 1 social justice elective): This course will foster a comprehensive and critical understanding of the political and cultural landscape of education for lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans*, two-spirit, queer/questioning (LGBT2Q) youth.

Computers in Education: An introduction to the computer technology used in Ontario classrooms. (My plan is to drop this course so I can do an independent study on unconscious gender bias in the classroom).

Special Topic: Education Philosophy: No course summary yet (but I thought the title sounded interesting enough).

All of these courses sound really interesting, and I'm super excited to get to it already!

Friday, August 8, 2014

10 Months

10 months have come and gone since Carter was born! What has he been up to for the past month?

- He has his two front lower teeth! He didn't do well with the teething, but we think he also had a cold at the same time (unless the coughing, sneezing, and tons of mucus had to do with teething). Hopefully the next teeth will go more smoothly.

- I got to witness him figuring out how to make a new sound. He was doing his regular babbling "gah, yah, dah..." then he stopped. He started working his lips. Putting them together and silently moving air. Then, after a few times he did this..."BAH". Then, "Bah, bah, BAH!!!!". New sound :D

- I put him down for nap by lying down with him in the guest bed. He bounces around, plays, and giggles, until at one point he just flops down (either on his face or back) and immediately falls asleep!

- He likes to play simon says. He especially loves it if I'm the one copying him!

- He loves to clap, and seems to do it when we should be giving him praise! LOL!

- He waved goodbye for the first time yesterday!

- He does this super cute thing where he plays "coy" - puts his ear to his shoulder and looks at me like "aren't I cute, mom?".

- He loves to play chase! If he starts crawling away from me, he'll stop and look back at me. Then I'll say "I'm going to get you!" and he starts crawling away as fast as possible while giggling. Then, I fake trying to catch him and he goes faster and faster, still giggling. He thinks it's so hilarious when I catch him.

- He loves to cause trouble. When we tell him "no", he just giggles and continues doing it.

On "Carter Island" - where he goes when causing trouble at the dinner table!

- He has no qualms crawling away from me into other rooms, even at places he's not familiar with (like the Children's Museum).

- We went on our first vacation as a family of four! We rented a cottage and had a blast!

They really do grow up so quickly!

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Leaps in Maturity

Evan has changed a lot in the past two months. I've  gone from being worried about him starting kindergarten in September to knowing he's ready.

- He's taking an interest in different things like books and reading, writing, and gardening.

- He gets excited when there are other kids at the park or playground to play with. Before, he would just say things like "I don't want that guy", " that's MY swing", or "I just want you to play with me, mom". It's nice to see that he wants to play with other kids that he doesn't even know.

- He's branching out with friends at daycare. He's had a best friend for a couple years now. Yes, they still play mostly together, but he's playing more and more with other kids, and doesn't rely on his BF to do things with him all the time.

- He is willing and able to learn table manners. He knows he has to try at least one bite of each thing on his plate. He knows he has to use a full sentence to ask for things ("may I have milk, please?" instead of "MILK! MILK!!!!!!!!!!"). He knows he has to ask to be excused from the table. He knows the TV has to be off during dinner (and in fact is the TV police lately! If it's on, he'll say it needs to be off). No, he doesn't do these things perfectly or all the time, but it's a start.

- He is taking much more interest in Carter and including him in his play and in "the family"...and he's actually happy about it (sometimes!). The other day, after bath time, they were both crawling/running around naked and they were having the time of their lives.

- He's not getting as scared during TV shows or movies. Last week, we went to see the Planes movies with his BF, and BF started to get scared. Evan just told him "it's okay, BF" and went back to watching the movie. That being said, he is showing more empathy for characters. Like last night, we watched Land Before Time, and he was so sad when the mommy died and even when the "bad" TRex died at the end (BTW: what's with animated movies and DEATH??!).

- He doesn't get nearly as worked up when things go wrong. For example, he and DH built a lego dinosaur the other day, and it fell over and broke. Instead of crying and having a TT, he looks at it and says "hmm..looks like we have to build him again."

Obviously these things aren't perfect all the time, but we're certainly seeing leaps in his maturity lately. He doesn't seem like a toddler in the least anymore - he's definitely in the little kid zone.