Taking Back To School By Storm

Today I'm excited because we had seven amazing back-to-school days before Hurricane Harvey stalled school for a spell and gave us today off.

Our staff did some team-building before the students showed up; check out this coverage of our Spot It! circle game that our character cam caught. 
Super fun to watch them laugh, connect, and reflect.

On Monday, we viewed the eclipse in our NASA-approved solar shades.

We spent the week reconnecting and getting to know one another better. 
I put one of these treats in each staff member's box ... 

 and got this bulletin board up inside of our learning space.

I received a beautiful note pad from my friend Tanya in Montana,
 so I used it to write these lunch invitations to our new students.

It's optional so I told their teachers to let them choose, because I get it if they'd rather stay in the cafeteria and eat lunch with their new class family friends. It was supposed to be today, so we'll be rescheduling for one day next week.

One of my superheroes brought me this bouquet of flowers, to cheer me up as I adjust to our empty nest. Won't they look pretty on our new-students lunch table?

And in the back-to-school mail this week, two special deliveries of thoughtfulness, one from a Twitter connection, a card thanking me for my inspiration, the other from my friend Maria, a note with prayers for comfort and strength as we make the transition to our new season at home by ourselves, with no kids living there. 
Small acts of kindness that made a big difference to my heart.

Yesterday afternoon, I tried using Zoom to go live with on We Are Teachers and give a tour of our learning space. A colleague of John's at NASA helped me so much the day prior by doing a practice chat with me and help allay a few of my fears as I stepped out of my comfort zone and used my iPad to connect and grow. 

It was a blast; thank you, We Are Teachers, for that fun opportunity.

On Twitter, one of our friends piggybacked our YET-goals idea; 

isn't it going to look amazingly colorful when it's up?

Speaking of colorful, check out this gem that a Bales alumni created at the end of May in her sixth-grade Language Arts class at Friendswood Junior High.

Using our Bales school True Colors theme, 
Caley wrote about a town that had lost its color, 

only to find it again when once they restored their core values.

Isn't it breath-taking? Thank you, Caley, for living your true colors!

Finally, we got three of these Gaga Ball Pits on our recess grounds.

I'm wondering as I type if they're mini-swimming pools right now.

So tonight, we stay inside while Harvey blows through.
Hopefully, we're back to class on Monday.
Then, on Tuesday night, join us to discuss these questions
on the #teacherfriends Twitter chat.

Happy 2017-2018; how will you take the new year by storm?

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