Sunday, August 31, 2014

Currently September

 Well it's that time again...time to link up with Farley over at

So let's get to it...

Pandora...on shuffle.  I always seem to be listening to Pandora when I do this.  
(The wifey and I were watching "Head Over Heels", but we had to stop so she could write an article for work.)
When I started this, Warrior by Paradise Fears was playing.  Right before I hit "publish" The Way Down by White Tie Affair was playing.

It's Florida.  Which means that weather forecasts are just suggestions.  We have a very low chance of rain tomorrow, so if it's sunny when we wake up, we're going to the beach.  And I am feeling mighty pasty so I can't wait!

Tomorrow is the last day of my 3 day weekend.  And I have done NOTHING for school.  And I am so glad cause I needed it...but my next month is going to be crazy - we're Discovery Ed testing.  And as the ESE teacher I have to pull all of the ESE kids from 3rd-5th and test them in small groups.  Which totally messes up my schedule.  And I should be figuring all that mess out.  *sigh*

So, the wifey and I didn't get to go anywhere on vacation this summer...either she was working or I was working.  So we've booked a Disney vacation for the fall, and (you guessed it), we check in on September 20!  We're also going to Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party for the first time ever!  We're very excited.
I need to go grocery shopping.  The first few weeks of school always throw me for a loop.
Three Trips:
Ok, so the rule was three places I'd love to vacation that I've never vacationed before.  The first is Paris.  We lived in Germany when I was little, and my older brother took a field trip to Paris.  I've always wanted to go.
The second place is New York City.  I have always wanted to see Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in person, and go to a Broadway play.  Plus my bestie lives in NYC right now being all lawyery and stuff.
And the third place is Italy.  I really didn't think anything about it before my wifey and I started dating.  It's on her bucket list and it has slowly come over to mine as well.

Well, can't wait to learn more about all of y'all.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Meet the Teach

So, Stephanie over at 
has decided to host a Meet the Teacher linky party.  And I LOVE the idea!
So, let's get started...
My name is Ryan Graber and I blog from the crazy state that is Florida.
I was an ESE teacher assistant for 1 year, and an ESE k-5 teacher for 1 year.  Then I spent 2 years in a K-2 behavior unit.  The past 2 years have been in a 3rd grade inclusion class (as the gen ed teacher).  And this year I am going back to ESE and will be the 3-5 ESE teacher.

Disney World...of course!
My boo thang and I have been married for 6 years (we got married, and honeymooned, right in the middle of student teaching).  We got engaged at Disney, honeymooned at Disney, and visit as often as we can.  (If you have any Disney travel questions, I can probably answer them.)

Sandy Cheeks!
We do not have any human children, instead we just have this snuggle bug.  Sandy, and the rest of her litter, was abandoned, with their mom, by a friend's neighbor.  When she found them she put a request out on MySpace (do we even remember that?!) to see if anyone wanted a puppy.  The wifey and I quickly picked Sandy up.  Her crazy just adds to our crazy and it's wonderful.

Now, on to the questions...

These are a few of my favorite things...
starting sentences with the word SO
watching movies
the sound rain makes as it hits my chimney
eating dessert first
the beach

If you weren't a teacher, what would you be?
I have honestly always wanted to be a teacher.  But I guess if I wasn't, I would either work in a bookstore, or at Disney.  And if I was at Disney, I would either ask to guide tours or be in the parades or something where I could be ridiculous.
Three little words that describe you...

Finish the sentence: "________, said no teacher ever."
I HATE summer vacation, said no teacher ever.
It's your birthday, and you can invite anyone {dead or alive} to the party.  Who are you inviting?
You mean besides the obvious family and friends?
Well, Walt Disney (of course).
Ellen DeGeneres
the cast of Glee
Jane Austen
(random group, I know)

If someone wrote a book about your life, what would the title be?
What's funny is my wife and I have talked about this...and my book title would be:
Wait, What?

You get to pick one superpower, what is it?
I have always wanted the ability to become invisible.  Then I would really know what people thought of me!
What's your favorite quote or saying?
"Don't be afraid of death, be afraid of the unlived life." - Tuck Everlasting
If you had to sing one song on American Idol, what would it be?
 There's this 90's (or maybe 80's) country song.  I can't remember the band or the name of the song.  But it's about this guy who obviously needs some help with his mental facilities.  And he works in a restaurant with this girl that he falls in love with.
I used to LOVE that song.  It took me years to realize that it was not a happy ending...
And I don't know why...but that's the first song I thought of with this question.

Are you a morning person or a night owl?
I am most definitely a night owl.  My wife will tell you that it is awful trying to get me up in the morning.
What's your favorite resource that you've created in your TpT shop?
Honestly both resources in my TpT shop right now are free.  And they're free for a reason.  One is just Whole Brain rules.  And one is a set of Partner Cards.  Eventually I will add more things...just not right now.
Share something we might not know about you.
So, Sleeping Beauty's Castle at Disneyland is based off a real castle.  Cinderella's Castle at Disney World is partially based off the same castle.  It's called Neuschwanstein Castle and it is in Germany.  I've been there before.

Neuschwanstein Castle

Well, I hope you learned just a little bit more about me...thanks for sticking out this post.

Don't forget to head over to Falling Into First and join the fun!

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Saturday Snapshots on a Sunday evening

So I don't know if every school has one, but my school has a Hospitality committee...and I am the chairperson.  What that means, is I set up events for our faculty and staff to get to know each other and hang out as people.

So, for our End of Summer Bash, we decided to meet at the beach for the afternoon, and then go to dinner on the beach.  We didn't have a big group, but we had a lot going on that week.  It was still fun.

So, I am linking up with Mrs. Nelson over at

Run Miss Nelsons got the Camera

for Saturday Snapshots.  So here they are...

 Don't I just live in the best place?

 I have the BEST music teacher in the world!!  She's become such a great friend.

 This was our view at dinner.  The restaurant was completely open air.  It was beautiful and the food was delicious!

It was a perfect end to the summer!

Monday, August 4, 2014

That back to school time...

Well, it's that's time again...time for back to school.

I went by my room today, but I only had 2 hours to work.  My carpet had been replaced, which means all of my furniture was just kinda of sitting in my room all haphazardly.  It also means my filing cabinets, which had been tucked into a tiny space, were sitting in the middle of my room.  So I really didn't get much done.

Here's what I walked into this morning...

The blue bulletin board is in the hallway.  We got an email from our principal over the summer saying nothing could be hung up in the hallway unless it was on a cork strip or bulletin board.  I immediately emailed our secretary and she put in a work order to get me a bulletin board.  I'm the only one in the hallway...I'm special like that.  :-)

I spent the rest of my time unloading that big brown box (supplies ordered with school money...yay!) and moving ALL of the ESE curriculum from the old ESE room into my room.  I should've taken a picture of that.

I also brought home all of the books in my classroom library.  I'm reading "Reading in the Wild" and it's making me rethink some things.  It also doesn't hurt that so many teachers I follow on blogger and Instagram were reorganizing their libraries.  I've always had my library set up by AR level.  I was very big on "read and test on your level!"  But I can see now how that limits our kids.  So I have one basket of non-fiction texts (I need to grow my non-fiction) and then the rest are separated by author/character.  I do have 2 fiction baskets that are my books that don't go with anything else.

My dog is very cute...but not very helpful.  And it probably didn't help that I was watching National Treasure at the same time.

I have a training the next 3 days...but as soon as I can, I'm going to get in and finish my room.  Can't wait to show it off!

Saturday, August 2, 2014

What I did this summer...

Or rather, why did my summer pass so quickly?!

So, I truly love my job.  But I LOVE summer, too!  I feel like teachers deserve it after working as hard as we do all year long.

My bank account, however, does not like me taking the summers off.  Luckily, I am very fortunate to know the woman who runs the summer camps at our local university.  Around October she emails me and asks what camps I want for the upcoming year.  I usually just tell her to put me wherever she needs an instructor...which meant 3 camps this summer.  All with rising first and second graders.

Each camp is only 1 week long.  And each camp is on a different subject.  So you can sign up for one camp, or multiple camps.  It's great.

Are you ready for some pics? goes.

Week 1: 
Robotics Camp

We used the Lego robotics kits...and they were amazing!  If you're thinking about getting them, do it.  I personally think they're worth it.  Now, we could only afford 4 kits, which means we had 5 kids per kit...and I had to share with the two older camps.  I'm hoping that next summer we can buy another kit or 2.  
We also made recycled robots
robot commercials
and studied all kinds of robots.
It was a great week.

Week 2:
Jr. Forensics Camp

We had to solve crimes
create crimes
get fingerprinted
study chromatography
look at, and study, handwriting

Again, great week
Probably my favorite of all 3 camps.

Week 3:
Jr. Archaeology

Now, I wasn't planning on teaching this camp.  I was supposed to teach a tech camp this week, and it was cancelled (due to low numbers).  And then the instructor for this camp bailed.  So I was asked to step in, and of course, I said yes.

This week was a good week, but a LONG one.  Granted, I only had 10 kids, but that meant no assistant.  :-(  And while I love history and archaeology, I had to do a lot of research to come up with curriculum for this week.  And trust me when I say there is not a lot out there for 1st and 2nd graders.

Anyway, we learned about
cave paintings
digs, and how you have to be gentle
you also have to make sure you document where you find things
we painted pots
then Mr. Ryan broke the pots (I might've thrown them off some steps...oops)
and then we had to glue them back together.

It was a good week...but like I said, long.

I LOVE doing summer camp.  It keeps my teacher bladder in check (haha), and lets me work on my Whole Brain strategies (I can use some I'm "afraid" to use during the year).  But three weeks of working in the summer means my summer goes fast.  :-/
One day I'll be rich and not need to work during the summer...right?

Thanks for sticking through such a long post!

Friday, August 1, 2014

August Currently

It's that time again...time to link up with Farley over at 

for August's Currently link up.

So here it is:

Listening: Currently we're watching Extreme Weight Loss.  The wifey and I love this show...we just need to put some of the practices into effect.

Loving: Essentially my summer is over.  I taught a summer camp this week, and then I have some pd next week, and then we go back for pre-planning.  So I am so excited it's Friday...I can't wait for tomorrow.

Thinking: I haven't really done anything for's hoping I can get everything done that I need to to be ready.

Wanting: I want an extra week to just go to the beach, sleep in late, and watch movies curled up on the couch...alas, not so much.

Needing: My needing is the same...but I need it so I can actually work on things...not that I would.  :-P

1st Day: I go back for preplanning on the 11th.  And the kids come back the 18th.  I've seen a lot of teachers posting about how they only have a few days before the kids come back...I am so lucky that I get a week before the kids come back.  I just hope I'm productive.

Can't wait to see what's going on with all of y'all.