The New World

Tonight was the last day of band camp for my daughter.  Parents were invited to see a preview of their new field show called The New World.  The theme of the field show is outer space.

My husband and I are new to the whole marching band thing.  All I can say is wow!  The band marched (without instruments), and they called the counts out loud.  The formations were very intricate.  Everyone looked together as a cohesive unit.  To my eyes they looked great.  My daughter told me later that there were some mistakes, but I couldn’t tell.

I was very impressed with all they had learned in a short amount of time.  I thought of my daughter who has never marched before in her life.  The first day she was totally overwhelmed with all the information that was being thrown at her.  One night she came to me and said she didn’t understand how to read the formations.  She didn’t understand the terminology.  I felt bad because I couldn’t help her.  I do not have marching band experience.  I can see why someone would want to quit.  She wanted to give up, but she didn’t.  When she came to me and said she finally got it, I was so happy for her.  It is amazing to see how far she has come.  She is improving everyday.

I am going to make sure I take this lesson with me into the classroom.  When my students are feeling frustrated, I need to encourage them to keep going and not give up.  Eventually things will begin to make sense.  I am also thinking that when times get tough, students need to feel supported.  I am sure this is what happened with my daughter.  The veteran band members help each other out.  They encourage the freshmen to ask questions if they don’t understand something.

I want that feeling of community and camaraderie to happen in my classroom.  I know it’s up to me to make that happen.  It’s going to be a whole new world for my students and me.  I know there may be some setbacks, but if we work together, we can accomplish anything.  I am hoping this will be an awesome year.


The Sound of Words

I was just looking back at my posts and I realized I had not posted anything for Monday, August 12. For the life of me, I do not know what happened on that day. I could have sworn I posted something. I was disappointed that I could not keep up with my 30 day challenge to post on this blog. I contacted my friend, Kim, who gave me the challenge in the first place. She told me not to beat myself up over it. She encouraged me to keep going and maybe post two times in one day to make up for the lost post. So, that is what I am doing now.

I have been paying attention to the sound of words. I have 2 favorite words right now. They are dinkles and dongles. I like these words because when I say them they make me chuckle. The sound of those words makes me laugh. And, when I say them out loud to other people, it makes them laugh, too. Then, they want to know what dinkles and dongles are.

I did not make these words up. If you were wondering. . . dinkles are shoes. They were named after Dr. Harry L. Dinkle, world’s greatest band director. That is according to the Dinkles website. My daughter, who is in the marching band, had to get measured for dinkles today. The shoes are made of leather, and she will have to wear them with her marching band uniform. They come in a few colors. Here is a picture of what they look like. Do you think they look comfortable?


A dongle is a cable that connects two devices with different connector types. A dongle is like a bridge that allows the two devices to communicate. If you connect your iPad and a projector system with a dongle, you will be able to project whatever is on your iPad to a screen for all to see. Here is a picture of one type of dongle. This one can be used with an iPad. There are different types of dongles. It depends on what devices you need to connect.


I have been going around saying these words as often as I can much to the dismay of my daughters. They just think I am silly. I think when you like the sound of a word, you should use it often. Pretty soon, the novelty will wear off.

All I know is-just don’t get your dinkles and your dongles mixed up. Now, that would really be silly! (I can’t believe I just used the words dinkles and dongles in a sentence. And, I just did it again!! )

Keeping In Touch

I love that saying, “Keep In Touch.”  Think of how many times you have said it.  Then, think of how many times you have followed through with that promise.  It is not easy to do.  We all get busy sometimes.  I have often heard people say that life got in the way.  What holds us back from keeping in touch with people that we have made a connection with?

This month I used the phrase, “Keep in touch” several times.  Yesterday, I had the opportunity to get together with friends who went through the San Diego Area Writing Project Summer Institute.  We wanted to meet and discuss what we learned during the institute.  And, we wanted to share how we would use our new learning in the classroom.  I had been looking forward to meeting with everyone, because I knew it would provide motivation for the start of the school year.  For  me, this is in less than two weeks!  I appreciated the energy that was generated at this meeting, and it reminded me of our work over the summer.  I feel blessed to know these people who are such knowledgeable educators.  The best part is knowing that it won’t be difficult to keep in touch with this group.  I am actually looking forward to meeting again once the school year has gotten underway.

Earlier in the month, I went to my 30 year high school reunion.  Yes, I said 30!!  I have to be honest and say that I have not kept in touch with many people from my high school years.  I have one good friend that I talk to and that is mainly because our daughters are best friends.  I ended up going to the reunion with this friend and her husband.  The reunion turned out to be fabulous.  It was fun seeing old friends that I hadn’t seen since the 20 year reunion.  It was harder recognizing some people this time around.  I spent a lot of time looking at name tags to help me remember who was who.  I am happy to say that time has been kind to many of us.  The interesting thing about the evening is that even though I hadn’t seen these people in 10 years, there was an ease in our conversations.  It was as if we were still back in high school chatting at lunch.  It really felt great to see everyone.

As we were leaving the reunion, everyone was hugging each other and promising to keep in touch.  Then they would ask, “Are you on Facebook?”  Unfortunately, I am not.  I do not know why I am resisting getting on this social network bandwagon.  I guess I’m not willing to invest any time into it.  But, if I am really serious about keeping in touch, I have a decision to make.  Should I or shouldn’t I get on Facebook?  In the past, I would strongly refuse.  However, now I am not completely closed off to the idea.  For now, I am happy being Facebook free.  If anyone wants to keep in touch they can find me on Twitter and Instagram.  Or, you can just pick up the phone and call me (if you have my number).  I think this is the best way to keep in touch.  Nothing beats real life interaction.