The Giver


As I said in my previous post, I have read The Giver by Lois Lowry before for pleasure, but have never taught the novel. I have also never seen 6th graders read the novel before. At least in public schools, it’s 8th grade that usually reads The Giver. I have just begun re-reading the giver and making notes and highlighting. If anyone has any great sites or information to steer me towards that would be incredibly helpful.

I am also looking for good biblical scripture to make connections with the novel. I don’t have to, but I think it would make for good discussion as we discuss a Utopian society that has no religion or beliefs in love.





I was very fortunate to meet up with the teacher whose position I am taking next year. I will be the only Language Arts teacher for the 6th grade at this Private Christian School, which is both exciting and nerve-racking. I was hoping to use the same novels that I have taught in the past at this school, but was informed I won’t be able to this school year. Parents have already been given the list of the novels they need to purchase for this upcoming school year. The novels I will be teaching are:

The Giver by Lois Lowry

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom

The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin


I have read the Giver before, for pleasure, but have never taught it. I have not read the other novels. I’m familiar with A Christmas Carol like most children through cartoons and Christmas specials, but haven’t read the actual book. I have never heard of The Hiding Place, and I do know many kids who enjoyed reading The Westing Game, but just haven’t done it myself yet.

I am extremely fortunate that the previous teacher is leaving all of her files for me to use next year. They’re organized and placed in the order they are used in the school year. This really is great. She did tell me that there is much more that she hoped to do, but that there really just isn’t time for it. I’m very big on doing projects, and she said they never really did those either. That makes me a little nervous, because those are the types of assessments I love. Of course I can change things up as I please with the kids. It’s too difficult to strictly follow what someone lays out for you. The school is still cleaning the classroom, so I am unable to really sit down and go through the filing cabinet and start planning out my year for myself. I am hoping to do this within the next couple weeks as my planning days begin in 3 1/2 weeks.

Please let me know if you have any suggestions or places to check out for the above novels.

Digital Goals

First off, I have to credit, Jacqui Murray and her post:

5 Digital Goals for Summer

It got me thinking about my own digital goals for this summer. Technically it’s not summer for me quite yet. I still have 7 school days left before I can truly think about it.

I am switching from a public school with almost no technology to a private school with tons. I do know how to use Smart and Activ Boards. Although, I do think there are many tricks I hadn’t learned with them. My students are 1:1 on laptops at the new school. This means that there is just so much that we can do in the class when it comes to writing, editing, and research. I am very excited! This wealth of technology also means that I need to really get myself acquainted with all of this technology. We are an Apple school. This also excites me as I am familiar and own Apple products. There is still much to learn though.

I have been registered to attend iSummit, which is a technology conference this summer. This should also help me in preparing before the upcoming school year.

I want to check out some other avenues of technology. There is so much out there, I only need to educate myself.

I also want to check out Teachers Pay Teachers. I think there is something to be learned through it.

I am taking a group of students on an EF (Education First) trip to Germany in a few weeks. This I am very excited about as well. Much to learn and do this summer.

Book Movie Trailers

One of the wonderful appeals of my upcoming job at a private school, is the use of technology. Each middle school student is assigned an Apple Airbook to work with fully loaded with software and fun programs such as iMovie.

As I was thinking of fun ways to integrate technology in the upcoming year, I decided to search through Pinterest. I then stumbled upon the above video, and fell a little in love.

This summer I will create a rubric for students to create their own book movie trailer. I might even do this towards the beginning of the school year with their summer reading. This way students can work on this in small groups. We have the equipment at the school, and I think it’d be a lot of fun to see what they come up with.

If you have done this or something similar please feel free to leave me advice and/or suggestions.

The end of another year….

We have reached yet another end of the year, and I have so much going on in my life.

First, I apologize that I have not updated in a year. As you will see in my About me page, I had a lot of changes this year. It was a very tough year, and I am excited to say that it is almost over, and I will be heading to a new school this next school year. I plan on blogging more often as I share ideas and my thoughts as I revamp my lesson plans for the upcoming year. I will be leaving public education for a Christian private school, but most things I talk about of course can be used at any school.

I hope you will enjoy reading about this next step in my career, and will continue to give me feedback and suggestions as I already begin to plan what I will do this next year.