Friday, February 7, 2014

A student staged a fake proposal--- and other musings from the classroom.

** I was grading book reports this morning and came across this gem of a summary of The Jungle Book:

"Mogile had to license for hours then the panther jumped out and waked all the banger-log, hold on brother and bolo came out and got all the banger-log away from Mogile came out of the opining and Kaa the seven foot python struck and the bander-long, the monkey are afraid of the snake."

I don't even know where to begin trying to figure out what he was trying to say.

** Nate sent me flowers last week and they were delivered during fourth period. It also happened to be my rowdiest class. The flowers got them all sorts of off track and led to many questions about who sent the flowers, if I had a boyfriend, etc. Well--- fast forward a week. I was waiting for a couple students to finish their assignment at the end of class and one boy, who is a royal pain in my behind and who doesn't give a dang about school, started a conversation with me:

Him: So, Miss Koster. Are you going to get married? Are you engaged?
Me: Nope, I'm not engaged.
Him: Well do you want to get married?
Me: Of course I do.
Him: Well do you want to get engaged?
Me: Yep!
Him: Do you want to get engaged to the boy who sent you flowers?
Me: (probably blushing a bit...) Haha. Um, we'll see!
Him: So that's a yes!
Me: Haha. Time will tell!

Then another student chimes in:
Student: Hey! Have you heard of Sheri Dew?
Me: I have!
Student: Did you know she has never been married?
Me: I did know that. 
First Student: Who's that?
Me: She's an LDS speaker.
Student: Yeah. My mom listens to her.
Me: Cool. 
First Student: I listen to Eminem.

I didn't even know how to connect the two people. Thankfully the bell rang and they were out the door.

** Also in that same class period, a student staged a fake proposal. To me. Here's how it all went down:

I was giving the class instructions for their assignment and ended by asking if anyone had any questions about what to do. One student raised his hand. I called on him only to see him get down on one knee with a little black box in his hand.

Him: Miss Koster. I have a question.
-- I was totally speechless. I had NO idea what he was up to.
Him: Will you please... (long pause as he flipped the box open) take this from me? I have no idea what it is!

At that point, I lost it. He was blushing, I was blushing, and the whole class was in an uproar. It was hilarious. I took the box from him and examined it and discovered it was cello rosin. I told him I wasn't sure what he was doing and if I was going to have to report anything to the boy who sent me flowers.

This then began a long line of questions about if I had ever had a student actually propose to me and what I would say if that ever did happen (BTW-- the answer is NO. Just so we're clear.). After about ten minutes of the class being sidetracked, I finally got them back on track and working. It was by far one of the funniest moments of my teaching career.

** It's times like these that make me so grateful for my students. They make me crazy some days, but more often than not, they make me laugh. And when they do, it helps me remember why I do what I do and how much I love my job and my kids. If I ever have to leave the teaching profession-- or even my school-- it's going to be one of the hardest things I will ever do. I'm glad I chose a career that I love and have a passion for. It makes going to work every morning at 7 am not quite so bad. :)

Friday, January 3, 2014

Peace Out, 2013

2013 was quite a year. It flew by faster than any other year so far. It seems like time is moving faster and faster. Hopefully 2014 slows down a bit. As is tradition, here is a quick recap of this past year and all the wonderful things that happened:

- Nearly froze to death in the frigid single digit temps we had all of January.
- Took a few days off of work to watch Emmett so Kelsey could fly to Chicago for Riley's boot camp graduation.
- Turned 29. 
- Finally got to see my cousin Wes when he got home from his mission.
- Spent Spring Break in St. George with my mom, dad, and Skyler. 
- Finally visited Zion National Park.
- Had a crazy sewing bug, so I made an entire quilt in one weekend.
- Ate my weight (and maybe more) in fresh peas from the garden. I seriously live for June every year.
- Studied my brains out for and took the Praxis II.
- Passed said test and officially upgraded my teaching license to a level 2 license. 
- Finally joined the iPhone world. I LOVE it.
- Spent two weeks in July teaching a program for gifted and talented elementary school kids. And I became very grateful that I chose secondary education as my field.
- Our family was finally all together again when Riley came home from Navy training.
- Spent the first week of August in Denver helping my friend Jill with her kids after she had hip surgery.
-Finally went camping for the first time in ten years. It was magical.
- Started my FIFTH year of teaching. Still can't believe I'm that far in already.
- Spent four days in California with my family. My cousin Eric got married, so a bunch of us headed down to celebrate. 
- Finally got to go inside the San Diego Temple. Oh. My. Gorgeous.
- Took another day or two off work to play with Emmett again so Kelsey and Riley could venture to Denver for a Sox game.
- Made it to 2 BYU football games.
- Discovered that all my time in the sun has started to cause damage. I had the first of what I'm sure will be many precancerous moles removed.
- Watched my incredibly talented students put on Seven Brides for Seven Brothers.
- Celebrated with my family the day Nicole and Chaz finally got to adopt a sweet baby girl.
- Ate waaaaayyy too much food on Thanksgiving.
- Took a chance on a dating app. Said chance paid off. :) I was lucky enough to meet Nate, and I'm learning what it takes to do a long distance relationship. Wish me luck, folks. :)
- Learned how to time the basketball games at school. Nearly messed things up quite royally.
- Spent Christmas Eve sick as could be--- complete with a fever, chills, and general feeling of death.
- Spent more time than I can count with my family and friends, realized just how richly I have been blessed, and have learned more about my capabilities and who I am than ever before. 

I can only imagine that 2014 is going to be even better than 2013 was. I'm excited for what is in store for me. It'll be a good year.... even if I am turning 30 in March. :)

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Bucket List

With my 30th birthday a short five months away, I've been thinking of things I'd like to accomplish in the next ten years of my life. My twenties were full of some good stuff, and I'm thinking my thirties ought to be equally as great! Turning 30 isn't something I'm really looking forward to, but I figure if I have a list of awesome things to do, it might make it a tad easier! :)

1- Get a passport.
2- Use said passport to travel internationally. Europe or New Zealand would suffice.
3- Go to Harry Potter world.
4- Do something BIG for my 30th birthday-- Disneyland or some other equally fabulous trip.
5- Pay off my student loans.
6- Learn to play the piano.
7- Visit Washington, DC.
9- Go on a Church history tour.
10- Visit every temple in Utah.
11- Ride a zip line.
12- Ride the Alpine Slide.
13- Go snowboarding or skiing.
14- Visit New York. Walk through Central Park.
15- See Wicked. or Les Mis. Or Newsies. Or all three. Really, any Broadway play would do.
16. Visit Hawaii.
17. Buy a home.
18. Visit Arches National Park.
19. Read the books on my never-ending list of books to read.
20. Visit the Oregon coast.


Friday, September 13, 2013

New School Year = A New Round of Funny Comments

I don't know if anyone even reads this ole' blog anymore, but it's a good place for me to record things!

A new school year started and has been going for almost four weeks now. My kids are pretty good this year. It took them a week or so to really settle in and get serious about school, but now we seem to have a good routine, and they know what to expect from me and they know how I run my classroom. And of course, they are always witty and say the most hilarious things. And so, here is round one of comments I have collected so far. (They have said MUCH more than I post, but I write down everything I can remember!)

* On a student information sheet that I have parents fill out: "She faints easily, but it's nothing to stress over." Mmmmkay. So you're telling me not to stress when your daughter passes out in my classroom? Right.

* We were talking about capitalizing the names of nationalities. One that I mentioned was European. Naturally, that induced a large amount of giggling from some of the boys. One boy turned back to another who seemed to find it funnier than most, and sarcastically said, "Laugh it up, Chuckles." That's when I lost it. And so we got sidetracked and had a little giggle fest for a minute. That class has become one of my favorites already.

* I have my students write me a letter to tell me about themselves. One boy was telling me about his family and said, "I really like the smell of my two sisters' hair. It always smells really good." --- Does this comment concern anyone else? What eighth grader normally smells their sisters' hair?

* In another letter, one girl was telling me her feelings about writing. She informed me that, "Most of the writing people do is horribly written or it is opera." Good to know. Perhaps we need to work on learning the definition of opera.

* I intercepted a note that was being passed between a boy and a girl. The last thing she wrote before I took it? "I sleep more heavlyer than you." Awesome.

* I often ask my classes on Friday if anyone has fun plans for the weekend. One student asked me what I was going to be doing. The conversation went as follows:
     Me: "I'm going camping for the first time in about ten years!"
     Him: "Seriously? Why haven't you gone sooner?"
     Me: "Well, I haven't been able to find anyone to go with, and I haven't wanted to go alone."
     Him: "Take all of your friends with you!"
     Me: "They are all married and it's hard to find a time to get together."
     Him: "Wow. You live a really sad life!"
     Me, in my mind: "Oh wow! Haha. I guess I kind of do!"
Seventh graders have no filters, and are usually brutally honest in their comments. Gotta love it.

* Today I was showing an example of a story I had written so they could see what they were going to do. The story was about the time I hiked to the top of Timp and got stuck in an insane storm. I ended the story by saying how it's kind of funny that that particular trip has become one of my very most favorite memories. One boy (different that the camping comment one) raised his hand and said, "Wow. You must live a super sad life if that storm is one of your best memories." I explained that it was a fun time with my dad and sister and that's why it was a good memory for me. He insisted that my life is still sad. Thanks, buddy! 

* We have a classroom "Twitter board" that students get to post on every time they finish a book. I have them write the title of the book then create a hash tag explaining how they liked the book. One clever boy finished Hunger Games and hash tagged it with "oddsnotinfavor". Haha. It made me laugh.

I think I have one of the most entertaining jobs on the planet. My students are the best and I am loving this new group! Here's to another great year! :)

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Where, oh where has my summer gone? Oh, where, oh where did it go?

I can't believe summer is already coming to a close. I have to be back to work in four days, and the kids come back in eight! I haven't done a ton of big things this summer, but I've been plenty busy having fun with the things I did do!! Picasa is being difficult, so instead of a nice collage, you just get an overload of individual pictures! And now Blogger is being difficult, so they are all completely out of order!

At the end of July, I flew to Denver to help my friend Jill after she had surgery. I had a blast hanging out with her and playing with her cute girls for a week. Sadly, this is the only picture I have of the event.

This sweet girl makes me smile. Love her to pieces!

This little miss turned 4 in July! She is the cutest, sweetest lil' lady there is.

Skyler was a gem a helped me one morning at a class I was teaching. I seriously have the best brother!

On July 27, Riley came home from 8 months of Navy training! Our family is finally all together again!

4th of July festivities-- Clearly the kids found the sippy cup to be more interesting than taking a picture.

More 4th of July fun!

Seriously. Could she get any cuter? I think not.

Sunday night bike rides around the neighborhood with my parents and Skyler

Mr. E and I got haircuts on the same day!

A few shave ices may or may have not been consumed

Orem City Summerfest fireworks with my favorite ladies

A very much needed girl's night out with the ladies--- Brick Oven then enjoying the fresh air at the Riverwoods. Glad they can break away from their husbands every now and again for some fun!

It was a great summer, and if flew by SOOOO quickly. Here's to another great 9 months of teaching before I do it again!!

In a perfect world...

* Chocolate, ice cream, and other treats would be good for me.
* Summers would be longer... I'm a big fan of getting paid to play!
* The temperature would stay 82 degrees for most of the year. #heaven
* I could snap my fingers and my classroom would be ready to go for the new year.
* Diet Coke would also be good for me.
* Mr. Perfect would be easier to find. Heck, he'd be found already!
* People would just get along. None of this war stuff. No bullying. No fighting. Just happiness.
* There would be more time to just sit and read. 
* I wouldn't crave ice cream sandwiches all.the.time. (seriously, it's a problem!)
* I'd be brave enough to go do fun things by myself. #singlepeopleproblems
* More people would understand the difference between your and you're. 
* Shark week would be at least a biannual event. #nerdalert

We don't live in a perfect world. But I'd say my world is pretty close to perfect! I am lucky enough to have...
* A family who loves me and supports me-- and who all live within a two mile radius of me.
* A job that I love more than I ever imagined I would. (How am I already starting my 5th year of teaching?!?)
* Students who sometimes teach me more than I teach them.
* Some really good friends.
* Mountains ten minutes away.
* A house to live in, a car to drive, and food to eat.
* A love for reading... and a never ending list of books I want to read.
* The Church. And all that goes with it.
* My sweet nieces and nephew. I absolutely adore them. 

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

A Birthday Video

My little brother has an amazing talent for making movies. He can often be seen with his GoPro in hand, filming the world around him. When my birthday came a few months ago, he got the idea to make me a movie. It was probably the best birthday present ever! I may or may not have shed a few tears.

I think everyone needs a brother like Skyler. :)

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Teenagers are Funny.

It's time again for a "what's going on in the classroom" post. They've come up with some funnies lately, so I thought it only fair to share with you all.

** My kids were asked to design their own Utopia. I gave them several questions to think about and respond to. My favorite is below.

I reeeeeeally hope she meant horses.

** We were discussing the use of cell phones, and the subject of texting and driving came up. Oh boy did that open up a whole lot of opinions. One boy raised his hand to share a story. "One time I was driving with my friend and his mom, and she started to text while she was driving us. The problem is that she is Asian and she has squinty eyes. I was afraid that she wouldn't be able to see in the first place, but then she started texting, and I got scared for my life." (I should note that the boy telling the story is Asian as well...)

** We read a poem that talked about the moonlight and the way it makes everything look. I asked the question, "Why do you think people think the moonlight makes everything romantic?" (Now I realize that sort of question is a dangerous one with 8th graders, but I thought it'd be funny to hear their thoughts.) One boy's response? "Well, it won't matter if the person you're looking at is ugly because you can't see their face because it's dark." Hopefully he doesn't tell that to a girl.

 ** Overheard in the hallway: 
Student 1: "Man, what did you spray? I'm like dying over here!"
Student 2: "Axe!"
Student 1: "Well how many sprays did you do?"
Student 2: "Two! One for me, one for the ladies. That's how you do it, man!"

** And, when all else fails, and you haven't read the book you were supposed to read, just fill in every single answer with something about Chuck Norris. 

Nicely done, buddy. At least you got points for making me laugh.

Every day is an adventure in the junior high. Glad I get to watch it all unfold. Glad I don't have to live through it again. :)

Friday, January 25, 2013

Sometimes it's the little things.

I'm sitting here in a very thrilling teaching conference. And instead of listening to the award speeches, I thought I'd write a little post. (Because I can only take so much of the teacher jokes/humor...)

I was in the computer lab with my kiddos one day a few weeks ago, and I had this moment as I was gathering essays where I was like, "Oh my heck. How did I get here? How did I get to this point in my life where I am teaching 260 teenagers and actually loving it?!" And then I just smiled knowing that I'm where I should be. My kids are the best and I love what I do. And then it got me thinking about all the small things that make life wonderful. You know, things like:

* Fresh popcorn from the hot air popper.
* Time with Mia and Emmett.
* Skyler asking me to become a merit badge counselor so I could help him with the reading merit badge. Even though there are almost 18 years between us, a love for reading is something we have in common. I love it, and it makes me smile.
* Finally having a heater that works. Yay for a warm house!
* Girl's night out with my favorite ladies.
* Hugs.
* Making new friends.
* Reading. I have been flying through books lately.
* Valentine's Day decorations.
* Temperatures above 20 degrees. It practically feels like summer!
* Good converstaion.
* Making things. Being crafty.
* Diet coke.

It's been a goal of mine to notice the small moments that make life so much better. You know... kind of make the most of each day and live it to its fullest kind of stuff.

Monday, December 31, 2012

Another Year Down...

How are we to the end of another year already? Didn't 2012 just start?!? I guess it's time for my yearly review!

This year has been an adventure, and while nothing too big and life changing has happened, it's still a year worth reporting about! :) Here are some of the highlights:

* Starting the year off with a bang by jumping into full time teaching. And jumping between two classrooms for the first two weeks of that. What a wild ride!
* Moving into a new apartment in February. Finding one was an adventure. But... when the roomie gets married, and you choose not to live with the newlyweds, 'tis something that needs to be done. :)
* Turning 28 in March. (30 is just around the corner now! Eek!)
 * Finding a human molar on the floor of my classroom. No one ever claimed it as theirs. Siiiiiick.
* Going to Phoenix for Spring Break to visit the Hall family.
* Going to the Hill Air Force Base Air Show in May--- and getting completely wet and cold from the crazy rain storm. 
* Going to Nine Mile Canyon. Super hot. But... super worth it. So many cool things to look at!
* Jamming my foot into cement curbing in June. Being told it was probably a sprain. But then being told by another doctor that it was really a stress fracture and wasting spending the next SIX weeks of my summer in a walking boot, unable to do any of the fun things I had planned on doing.
* Finding out a couple of months later from two different doctors (and a gazillion x-rays and an MRI) that my foot was never actually broken, and that the first doctor misdiagnosed me. Aaaaaawesome.
* Turning something on the lathe for the first time. My rolling pin is pretty dang awesome, if I do say so myself!
* Spending a weekend in Park City with some of my favorite ladies.
* Buying a new car. Poor Nissy was about to bite the dust, so I bit the bullet and swallowed the idea of having a car payment again. So glad I did!
* Fun Halloween shenannigans with my family.
* Having Kelsey, Riley, and Emmett move in next door to me. 
* Spending LOTS of time loving and spoiling Mia and Emmett. Being an aunt is the best thing ever!
* Going to the coldest BYU football game ever. 
* Running a 5K to support the Huntsman Cancer Institute in honor of my Uncle Dean, who was recently diagnosed with brain cancer.
* Went sledding for the first time in six years. Why do I not do that every year? It was SO much fun!
* Feeling like an adult when I bought my own TV and washer and dryer. Being an adult is expensive!
* Letting Julie take me from blonde to brown--- and loving it! 
* Finally being able to quit my second job! I had a great 10 years at the doctor's office, but it was time to move on. Mostly I did it to maintain my sanity. And to have my nights to myself again. Happy New Year to me!!
* Ending the year surrounded by family and friends, and being reminded how much I cherish the relationships I have with the people close to me. Experiencing a death in the family brings a new perspective, and reminds me again just how blessed we are to have the promise of eternal families.
* And finally... LOVING all the snow we got the last couple of weeks of the year. Driving in the snow is not my thing, but I absolutely love, love, love, to watch it fall and look at the snow-covered world.

So here's to 2013... I can't wait to see what it brings! I am looking forward to finishing my Gifted & Talented Endorsement, finishing my teaching portfolio that will allow me to move to a level 2 license, spending lots of time with my family and friends, and just enjoying life and what it brings!