GOODBYE SUMMER HELLO BACK TO SCHOOL

I never like to say goodbye to summer and it’s not officially over yet, but tomorrow is the first day of school so it’s time to switch gears. I feel like I’ve made the most of the summer which makes it a little easier to make the transition. I kicked off the summer with an amazing family trip to Costa Rica. We traveled from the west coast to the east coast and spent several days at Tortuguero National Park, only assessable by boat or plane. We zip lined, saw incredible flora and foliage and experienced wild life up close and personal.  Here’s a little look at our trip.

After our trip, I transitioned back to reality and spent 5 weeks providing service for students requiring Extended School Year services. Making the most of the weekends, I spent time exploring the many great beaches Rhode Island has to offer. My favorite this summer had to be the The Charlestown Breachway. Armed with my book and small cooler this was definitely a place to unwind and relax. The crystal clear water with a moderate surf was so refreshing on those hot days. (By the way, you will NEVER hear me complain that’s it’s too hot. NEVER.)

 

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I also tried my hand at a little gardening this summer with a container garden. Usually I just plant a few herbs in pots but this summer I wanted to try some veggies. I probably could have planted the veggies in the yard but decided the bunnies would probably get to them (or maybe it just seemed like more work than containers). I planted tomatoes, squash, zucchini and a variety of peppers. The squash didn’t do that well but everything else has been flourishing. I’m thinking about learning how to pickle the peppers to have them for our annual antipasto on Thanksgiving. container garden2Last but not least, I have worked on some new therapy materials for the fall. I am armed and ready to go for the first several months with some fun new activities. I will be able to target food vocabulary, plurals, pronouns, following directions, expressive language and more while playing Cookie Match Plurals, using open target drill sheets, and packing a lunchbox with food and utensils, all part of my Speech and Language Activities, Lunchroom Edition. You can find it here at my TpT store. lunch time language picAs we move into fall we will be using my new “Scarecrow, Scarecrow” books. These interactive repetitive books are perfect for my students who are challenged with visual attention and need activities with a clear ending.  The related materials also target categorizing, following directions, basic fall vocabulary, spatial and sequential concepts. There is also a black and white companion book that can be sent home for reinforcement or it could be used during co-treat sessions with the OT. You can find this product here.

scarecrow picWe will also be using materials from another repetitive reader “Gray, Squirrel, Gray, Squirrel” which is still in the works. It is a reader that targets fall vocabulary, spatial concepts, following directions and more.  Here’s a sneak peak.

 

gray squirrelIt’s been a busy summer with a good mix of leisure and work. While I’m not really wanting to say goodbye to summer, I don’t really have a choice in the matter. It’s good to know that I’ve made the most of the summer and I’m prepared for a new year ahead. Wishing everyone a great 2015-2016 school year!

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Dare to Dream

Week two of the TpT seller’s challenge is Dare to Dream. We are to blog about our dreams and goals for TpT. Here are some of mine…
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My middle son is a very driven student and athlete. He has been very focused and determined to do well in school whether it be in the classroom, on the track, during class council, or doing community service. As a junior, he has started to look at colleges more seriously. Recently he shared this list of schools with me. IMG_0669When he showed me, all I saw was $$$$$$$$$$$$!!!!

The truth of the matter is, he has worked very hard to achieve what he has achieved. As a National Honor Society Student and as a year round runner, he deserves to go where he wants, to pursue his dreams. He wants to major in Writing and has dreams of writing a screenplay. My dream for him, is that he goes to the college of his choice, regardless of the price tag. Truth be told, that can keep me up at night.  My youngest son is finishing up his freshman year in high school. Although he hasn’t really started looking at schools, he shows a wide variety of interests (recent school internships include film production and forensics in the fall)  and he is only a few years behind his brother. This too keeps me up at night!  I would also like to be able to take my sons on some college visits. Living in Rhode Island, it’s easy to visit the New England schools. The preferred schools in California are a bit more of an expense. Can you really commit to a school in California if you’ve never been??

While my oldest son wasn’t really cut out for college, at least not now, he has decided to enlist in the Navy. I am hopeful that this is the best choice for him at this time.  He enlisted this spring and will leave for basic training early November. He is scheduled to graduate from boot camp on December 31, 2015 in Chicago. Having never been to Chicago I would love to make a trip of it. I need to start planning now as I have a pretty good suspicion that could be a costly trip. I am also thinking ahead of all the possible places where he could be stationed and would love to take the opportunity to travel to see him. Side note: he is very excited knowing that he will have an administrative position in aviation once he completes training.

I really am looking forward to working from home. In the past I have done some private practice in addition to my school based job. I have also worked for the Autism Project of Rhode Island, as a therapist, consultant and presenter while working full-time in the school. While I loved that work, I really love the creative aspect of the “job”.  That’s what really drove me to the field in the first place. I love the idea of being able to have a “second job” but not having to leave the house to do it. I have been creating materials for over 20 years. It seems like a good fit to share some of the materials I’ve created, and hope to create with others.

Now that I’ve shared my dreams, I will share my goal: to take the summer to create some of the materials that I have drafted in a notebook. I have so many ideas for materials that  I want to create but find it hard during the school year to carve out the time to do it.  I am also hoping to create a home office so that I have a dedicated space to work at home. I think that will help to keep me focused. True confession: I MAY get a little distracted working from home. Nothing a little home office can’t fix!

If you are so inclined to check out my modest, yet soon to grow,  TpT store you can do so here.

Renee