And this week…

This past week was a busy one, even though it was “short,” with no students on Monday. I wasn’t really too busy with what I was doing with kiddos, but with all the other STUFF I had to do.

With the kiddos =

5th grade Media Technology spent their time with our TIS reviewing and preparing for TOPA. This is the first year our 2nd and 5th graders are taking this test. In the past only 8th graders and teachers took it. It will be interesting to see how they do. TOPA is a state-wide technology test.

I spent some time with a couple of classes of 5th graders recording Harlem Renaissance projects. You aren’t crazy, I did that last week too 🙂 My fab intern has been a great help with this.

All classes voted for their favorite South Carolina Book Award nominee this week. I still have a few classes that need to vote, so I can’t reveal any winners yet. K – 2nd grade students voted using our Smart Response System. Very easy. 3rd – 5th grade students voted using a Google Form that the TIS at another school made and shared with me. Also, very easy. I will let you know our winners next week!

All the other STUFF =

NPE’s Got Talent is our yearly faculty “talent” show and biggest Relay for Life fundraiser. Each year, we have a different theme (American Idol – our administrators were the “judges”; Gone Country – all country music themed songs and acts; We love the 80’s – skits and songs from the 80’s). This year, our theme was X-Factor / Top 40. I suppose I’m sort of “in charge” of this show each year. Basically, that means putting together music and organizing volunteers. Not difficult, especially since we’ve done it 4 years now, but it is time consuming and can be a bit stressful. In the end, the show is fun and our parents and students really seem to love it. We’ll know how much money we raised early next week. A HUGE THANK YOU to all of my NPES friends (and Marty!) who helped or performed! Everyone was AWESOME!

Read Across America / Dr. Seuss’ Birthday is THIS WEEK! I spent some time planning for that this week. We aren’t doing TOO much this year, but it still takes some time to plan. Luckily, I have a super assistant who is doing a lot of the creative stuff for this week. More information about our plans in next week’s recap 🙂

Author visit! Our author visit is April 3 and I spent some time getting things together for that, even though it is still more than a month away – had to make hotel reservations, create our book order form, etc. More about that soon!

SUB PLANS! I had to go in special on Saturday to make sure my sub plans were ready. I won’t be at school tomorrow because JUDY FREEMAN is here! I love going to her workshop every year. It is just one of those things that renews me and gives me great ideas. All librarians (or people who love books) should try to get to one of her workshops. She comes to Columbia once a year, usually around this time, so try to go!

Now for a couple of Toni Tidbits (tomorrow marks 1 month since she passed away. Hard to believe….) –

My dad has been visiting my mom’s tomb (that seems like a strange thing to call it. I don’t know what else to call it?) on a regular basis. Last week, he took their dog, Bella. For those who don’t know, Bella does not travel well. She gets very excited and can’t catch a breath when she is very excited. This has landed her in the doggie ER before. My dad really wanted to take her to see my mom though, so he put her in the car and started driving. She was very excited and hyped up on the drive over (it takes about 10 minutes to get to where my mom is from my dad’s house). Once they got there, he took Bella out of his car and to my mom. She calmed down once he was standing with her in front of my mom! I just love this. On the ride home, she was excited and hyped up again. She is getting better about being in the car though and I think my dad plans to take her to see my mom more often.

I started the above story telling you that my dad has been visiting my mom on a regular basis. I, on the other hand, have not. I just haven’t been able to go over there yet. Her plaque is not up (with it comes a flower pot) and when I go, I want to be able to bring flowers and see her name on something other than the label-maker label that’s there now. Anyway, I think my mom sent me some of her famous guilt via a dream on Friday night. I dreamt that I was visiting her tomb…I think this was a message from her telling me I better get over there…so, on Saturday, I went. I felt that I was going to get in trouble if I didn’t! I just knew my mom was still going to give me guilt trips! I’ll take ’em 🙂

Have a great week, friends!



About Valerie Byrd Fort

I live in South Carolina. I am passionate about libraries, books, and reading. I am also a mom. This is my blog about those things.
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